With the ever changing and evolving golf market, members needs and day to day running of golf facilities, thinking like a business becomes ever more essential. Golf Facilities need to be in a position to plan not react, this is more significant than ever before-particularly when managing change:
- Replaces fiction with facts.
- Maps the future and supports growth.
- Provides transparency to stakeholders and potential investors.
- Alignment of staff and volunteers to a clear plan of action.
- Enables the management team to effectively monitor progress.
All good business planning enables the business to evaluate:
- Where the business is now?
- Where is the business going?
- How will we get there?
- Who is responsible?
- How will you keep score?
- Developing a strategic planning framework
- Help create an outline of an effective business plan
Keep it Simple…
Where you are now + Where you are going
= Your Strategy
How you are going to get there
Who is responsible and How you will keep score
= Your Business Plan
5 key tools for a Situational Analysis
‘Situational analysis is critical to be able to make informed decisions based on data and evidence not emotion’.
Your internal landscape – What’s happening within the club?
- Compile a SWOT analysis – Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities & Threats
- Collate an Operational Analysis – Financial, Food & Beverage etc.
- Conduct a regular Member Analysis – Internal Environment
Your external landscape – What’s happening around your club?
- PEST – Political, Economic, Social & Technological
- Competitor Analysis – External Environment
Most facilities cover the following core areas of work, with each facet requiring structured analysis on:
- Golf Course
- Food & Beverage
Know your club data!!
Understand your members…deliver:
- Member Forums – prepared sessions use SWOT
- Member Surveys
- Key questions – short & concise
- Research your Market – tools & insight reports
- Continually review the profile of your existing members
- Government regulations regarding health, hygiene, food regulations, and food standards.
- Equality legislation.
- Government policies, these may include licenses, inspections by environmental health.
- Interest rates.
- Rate of inflation determines the rate of remuneration for employees and directly affects the price of products.
- Economic trends act as an indicator of the sustainability and profitability of your business in the chosen region.
- Eating habits of the people in your chosen business environment may, and certainly will, affect your marketing decisions.
- Ratio of people preferring to eat out regularly, changing attitude to volunteering and pressures on family timetable.
- Effective technology may be a decisive factor for business marketing (social media, apps).
- Tee time bookings.
- Who are your direct competitors?
- What are their products and prices?
- How do their facilities compare?
- What is their unique selling point?
- Research your Market – tools & reports
- Map the local competition – Understand the local potential
Mission and Vision
Once the club have identified insight and data..it’s now time to think about the ‘WHY’…
A one sentence statement that describes why you exist – your purpose
- The best mission statements are clear and concise
- Ideally no more than 15 words
A one sentence statement describing what your club would like to achieve or accomplish
- The best vision statements are inspirational and memorable
- Ideally no more than 20 words
Develop beliefs that are shared by the stakeholders of the golf club.
Values drive the golf clubs culture and priorities and provide a framework in which decisions are made.
Formulate your Aims
- Look at your list of core areas of work
- Identify what you want to achieve in each of those core areas:
- Core Area = Membership
- Strategic Aim = Increase the number of members
YOU NOW HAVE A STRATEGIC FRAMEWORK…
- Core areas of work
Plan for Business!!
- More than financial spreadsheets
- A clear link between a shared vision for the club and actions
- Written for real people using everyday language
- Customer focussed
- Sincere and meaningful
- Clear roles and responsibilities to ensure involvement and ownership
- SMART objectives that are regularly reviewed
Thriving clubs recognise they are better served with a professional team, which is held accountable to run the operation and have the authority to do so.
Accountability needs to be driven down to all levels-including the volunteer committee members/directors of the board
- Set a clear time frame to get it done
- Work as a team – empower your professionals
- Focus on creating the future – separates the thrivers from the survivors
- State out how long your plans are for
Make your goals SMART…
- Aim: More Members
- Smart Goal: Recruit 20 new members
- Initiatives to achieve that goal:
- Create a recruitment plan
- Arrange a member sales training day with our staff
- Promote a member get member campaign
- Host a family fun day and invite the local community
- Run a 9 hole promotion throughout the winter on a Sunday afternoon
- Start a Learn Golf 6 wk programme
Brainstorm different initiatives but then make sure you:
- Consider the cost of pursuing them within annual operating budgets.
- Consider HR implications, staffing levels and the return on investment.
- Be selective – don’t try to do everything at once
It is Vital to keep score – Your business plan is your future!
Set key performance indicators (KPI’s) for each aim
Benchmark against your chosen KPI’s
- A lot of this data will be in your ‘where are we now’ situational analysis
Agree when you going to monitor progress
- Ideally this should be every committee/board meeting
- The business plan should be the main content of your meetings
Decide timeframes for reviewing strategy & plans
Business Plan Structure
Keep it simple…
- Cover & Contents
- Executive Summary
- Situational Analysis – including financial
- Strategic Summary – Mission, Vision, Values, Aims
- Operational Plan – for each aim:
- SMART Goals