Golf Course Management

JUN 2013

Golf Course Management magazine is dedicated to advancing the golf course superintendent profession and helping GCSAA members achieve career success.

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Page 141 of 157

2012 Annual Report Messages from GCSAA leadership Our priorities drive our investment Patrick R. Finlen, CGCS President You've heard it said, "if everything is important, then nothing is important." In an era of intense competition for golfers, owners/operators are trying to squeeze out every cent of proft. It certainly seems like everything is important. But the reality is in these times of limited resources, decisions must be made in balancing the interests of today with those of the future. What is important to GCSAA was the sole discussion point of a strategic planning session held by the board of directors and the executive staff this past March. While everything we do is important, the planning session did provide some clarity as to what are our priorities. It is reassuring to note that thanks to the good work of previous boards, the association has been utilizing your dues and industry support in a manner that will keep the association relevant and valuable for years to come. From the meeting, the following priorities were established: 1. Continue to invest in technology that will allow for access to solutions in the feld, enhance communications and access member information even more effciently than what is being done today. 2. Fill the two remaining feld staff positions in 2013 and build upon the best management practices of growing member engagement and enhancing chapter effectiveness where appropriate. 3. Enhance our advocacy efforts for our members and for all of golf in terms of government relations; and to the key audiences of employers and infuential golfers. Our relationship with lawmakers must be one where they understand the value of golf and the need to not put golf at a disadvantage compared to other small businesses. Our message to employers and golfers remains one of value and driver of satisfaction. Our advocacy programming is just another example where a GCSAA membership is not only a value to the member, but the facility as well. Our work in this area is directly tied to enhancing the operations of golf facilities. 4. As the foundation of GCSAA, we must be diligent in maintaining that our continuing education programming is the best the industry offers. We are utilizing the feedback of the Membership Standards Advisory Group and others in the evaluation. 5. Revenue growth is key to implementing change. We continue to look at our key revenue-generating assets and explore new means to attract support to strengthen the industry and the profession. Other areas will continue to be funded and receive attention, but it is these where greater support will be provided to help you be successful in your careers. And when you get down to it, that is truly the biggest priority of all. Sustainability is our focus too J. Rhett Evans Chief Executive Offcer G-2 On the surface, associations and golf courses do not appear to have much in common. But what we do at GCSAA is very much aligned with what you do in managing your golf facility. Our focus is to utilize our resources in a manner that will serve the needs of membership today, but not at the expense of serving those for generations to come. Does that sound familiar? It is the basis of sustainability, a concept that has grown to become a part of the golf industry vernacular during the past 10 years. In terms of GCSAA members and their facilities, sustainability is utilizing available resources to serve the needs of the golfer today, but not at the expense of golfers in the long-term. While the defnition is simple and easy to understand, taking a sustainable approach — for both associations and golf courses — is not as easy as it sounds. Data must be collected and analyzed. Priorities must be established. Plans must be created. Consensus must be built. Execution must be focused. You are well aware that a challenging golf economy has had a direct impact on GCSAA operations. It would have been easy to sit back and spend our fnancial reserves in hopes that better times would naturally cycle back. But that would not have served your needs today, nor would it have allowed GCSAA to prosper in the future. That is why we had to make some diffcult decisions in recent years to create the capacity to implement programs and services that better serve you now, without bankrupting the association in the future. I am pleased that these steps have yielded new resources to better serve, while at the same time are providing for a strong future. I am excited about what lies ahead for GCSAA and its members. The association remains the single best and most comprehensive resource for its members and their facilities to enhance course management operations. GCSAA members meanwhile, are positioned as critical players in an industry that is evolving. Several key indicators support our direction and positive outlook. Financially, we have strong fnancial reserves and own our headquarters outright. Our credit rating is excellent. An independent survey of private clubs indicates GCSAA serves facilities better than any other association. From a member perspective, we continue to see members recognized by non-GCSAA surveys as being the highest rated golf facility employee that drives economic success and golfer satisfaction. That is not to say we will not continue to face challenges, but I am optimistic that with continued member input and support we will be successful.

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