PGAs of EuropeSustainability – PGAs of Europe http://www.pgae.com Home of the PGAE Thu, 23 Nov 2017 23:35:13 +0000 en-gb hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9 Noteworthy European Golf Club Trends in 2017 http://www.pgae.com/ask/noteworthy-european-golf-club-trends-in-2017/ Thu, 22 Jun 2017 13:50:28 +0000 Golf Business Monitor http://www.pgae.com/?p=19083 Golf Business Monitor & Rob Hill examine key trends and data from golf facilities throughout the EMEA territory...]]>

Golf Business Monitor & Global Golf Advisors’ Rob Hill examine key trends and data that could help you plan and make business decisions that will ultimately benefit your business…


Through our numerous assignments and research initiatives at Global Golf Advisors over the last twelve months, we have encountered both unique challenges and consistent trends at golf facilities throughout the EMEA territory. Here, I have identified five that are particularly noteworthy for their influence on current golf facility performance at European Clubs.

1. Capital Maintenance Trends

Capital maintenance, capital improvements and the funding of both are amongst the greatest challenge facing golf facilities now and are expected to continue to be so into the immediate future. 40% of clubs are reporting that they have more than three year’s worth of deferred capital maintenance and expenditure, largely a consequence of economic recession/stagnancy between 2009 and 2015.

Long-term capital planning is rare, with most clubs lacking a formal plan to fund capital requirements, using whatever cash is available each year to fund their reserves. Less than 50% have a capital reserve study in place informing long-term capital requirements. Of those that are investing in capital, almost 6 in 10 are using a combination of debt and membership levy to fund their programs.

Clubs spend on average 7.6% of gross annual revenue on capital maintenance but estimate they need to spend 9.6% to keep pace with capital maintenance.

2. Women make the ‘buy’ decision

Historically golf clubs have been institutions that served male viewpoints, wants and needs. New programs and services are changing membership structures, methods of club governance and the feasibility of many clubs.

In her book, “Marketing to women” Martha Barletta indicates that 91% of home purchase decisions are made by a woman. Typically, the club membership decision is a part of the home choice decision due to location, psychographic and demographic profile.

As such, clubs must reset membership programs to address the primary push/pull factors that influence the buy decision. Women prize their clubs as a platform for socialization. Clubs must demonstrate in clear and appealing ways that the lifestyle of the club is diverse, active and accessible for busy women and their families.

Sales and marketing tactics in forward- thinking clubs are seeking to address schedule flexibility, interesting and current programs and the opportunities for meeting and keeping friends.

3. Business Intelligence

There is increasing adoption amongst clubs of more sophisticated business intelligence for decision-making. This includes the tracking and analysis of financial and operational performance trends, market pricing trends and positioning, member satisfaction and net promoter score (NPS), comparable club benchmarking and targeted market segmentation.

Club Boards/Management have an increasing need for quantitative, interfaced data to afford informed decision-making about the club.

Club Managers continue to report feeling pressure due to performance comparisons to benchmarks and competitors in all areas, especially as they relate to dues, fees, compensation, benefits, pricing, and staff levels. Other leaders struggle to meet their Board’s demand for data which has led to an increase in staff hours to track, monitor, analyze, and produce data. Some GMs have found traditional sources of data to be insufficient in providing the data their Board/Owner wants.

Top performers are tracking specific internal and external market KPIs and act upon them to sustain the market position. Many clubs – which lack the comfort of capital or staff resources to execute their own intelligence program – rely on frequent, concise surveys that monitor customer satisfaction, such as the secret shopper program provided so effectively by 59Cub. Some have even tied staff bonus incentives to member/customer satisfaction ratings.

More recently many clubs have turned to subscription-based services such Global Golf Advisors’ Strategic Intelligence Platform to track operating performance, customer satisfaction, and competitive market data all in one central portal.

4. Sustainability

Last July, London’s new Mayor Sadiq Khan announced a ‘crackdown’ on pollutants. His goal is to “Make London one of the World’s most environmentally friendly cities”. His plan to achieve this goal includes amongst other things creating an ‘Ultra-Low Emission Zone in central London by 2019 and beyond central London by 2020.

The fact that Mr. Khan has placed this issue near the very top of his agenda, is a great indicator of just how much influence sustainability and environmentalism has on the public mindset – politicians don’t tend to tackle issues unless they are going to improve their popularity.

Many clubs are now rightly keen to present their sustainability credentials, but to have resonance, consumers want to know the details/specifics and the outcomes. For clubs, this means their efforts in this space should be measured and proactively reported, with the support of a trusted third party.

The Golf Environment Organization is doing extraordinary work in supporting clubs achieve exactly this. Their club tools are not just providing vital guidance on best practice for sustainable performance, but are now also providing measurement and reporting tools to aid in effective communication of the results of such performance.

5. Membership

Gone are the days when most clubs were operating with waitlists and a pipeline full of members lined up to join the club. The reality is that most clubs must now aggressively seek and find new members. Successful clubs are adopting a more data-driven approach to membership recruitment/retention and are adjusting membership and amenity offerings to be more competitive in their business space.

61% of clubs map the location of their members to identify trends and areas for new member growth. Global Golf Advisors recommends that clubs do this annually to maximize membership sales effectiveness.

Six in ten clubs have encountered challenges with an aging membership or growing senior member category. Two-thirds of this group has adopted a set of tactics to address these challenges, among which adjustments to age bands and entry fees are most common solutions.

More than one in four (28%) clubs have experienced a decline in their total number of members in the last 5 years. The annual attrition rate of clubs in the UK is 3.5% while in the rest of Europe that rate is 4.7%.

The top three factors for creating a sustainable membership strategy include

  1. improve overall amenity quality,
  2. embracing modern technologies to complement modern lifestyles, and
  3. further enhancing the club’s platform for connecting its membership.

Trends such as these, although not universally applicable, are highly valuable indicators of change. The capacity to be prepared for change and take advantage of the opportunities that come with it, is what marks a successful club. Best put by Darwin, “It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent. It is the one that is most adaptable to change”.

Rob Hill is a Partner at GGA with responsibility for their EMEA Office. A former recipient of Boardroom Magazine’s “Strategic Planning Firm of the Year” award, GGA brings an unmatched financial, marketing and operational focus to each of its strategic assignments. The firm serves over 2,700 clients around the world from offices in USA, Canada, Sydney (Asia-Pacific) and Dublin (EMEA). Rob can be reached at rhill@globalgolfadvisors.com.

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Noteworthy European Golf Club Trends in 2017
How to Make your Company Sustainable, In 2 Simple Steps http://www.pgae.com/ask/how-to-make-your-company-sustainable-in-2-simple-steps/ Tue, 11 Apr 2017 16:53:48 +0000 Inc.com http://www.pgae.com/?p=12106 Sustainability is a journey. On the road, you'll need to consistently deploy two important actions: measuring and engaging...]]>

Maureen Kline writes about corporate sustainability and social responsibility. She is in charge of public affairs and sustainability for Pirelli Tire North America. She lived in Italy for 23 years and is a former correspondent for The Wall Street Journal Europe, BusinessWeek, and BreakingViews. She can be reached at maureenkline@gmail.com.

@kline_maureen


Sustainability is based on continuous measurement and constant engagement

Sustainability is a journey. On the road, you’ll need to consistently deploy two important actions: measuring and engaging.

You’ll need to measure, because sustainability is a continuous SWOT analysis; you need to be aware of your company’s Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats so that you know where you’re coming from and where you’re going. Sustainability is about measuring where you are today, setting goals about how sustainable your company will be in the future, working backward to define how to get there, and then measuring progress along the way. The more specific and quantitative you are, the greater your chances of effectiveness.

Normally, goals will fall into three categories: environmental, social and governance. Environmental goals can include CO2 emissions reductions, energy efficiency targets, environmentally friendly product development, use of biodegradable packaging, involvement in a biodiversity project, reduced water usage, recycling, and many more. Social goals can range from goals regarding the welfare of your employees to community projects to helping alleviate hunger in developing countries. And governance goals might include setting up an ethics committee for your company, or having a diverse board of directors.

Once you know where you are and what you want to achieve in the future, you need to follow an action plan, and your success will depend on your ability to engage with stakeholders inside and outside the company. Engagement with them will be the key to acceptance and implementation of your sustainability plans, as well as outside recognition of your company as a sustainable one. Some of the stakeholders you may want to interact with are employees, customers, suppliers, investors, the local community, local government, environmental or human rights groups, and competitors.

Competitors? Indeed. There are now many stories of industry collaboration in order to effect change, particularly in raw materials purchasing and in recycling of end-of-life products. The cocoa industry has banded together to insist on certifiable sustainable practices among cocoa farmers, and the electronics industry is working on getting the minerals they need from mines certified as respectful of human rights (and not controlled by violent warlords).

Suppliers can be engaged through insisting on sustainable practices in purchasing agreements, and through training and audits. Customers can be engaged in all kinds of creative ways that marketing departments like to dream up. The local community can be engaged through charity donations and volunteering projects and partnerships.

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Employees are the most important piece of the puzzle. Without employee involvement in sustainability, big plans may go nowhere and promises remain shallow. Employees need to be engaged in a way that convinces them to understand and believe in what the company is trying to achieve, and participate. It is not just about getting employees to volunteer to plant trees or serve meals at the community soup kitchen. Employees need to understand the broad strategy, the company’s goals, and the specific action plan. They need to be asked for ideas and listened to. They need to see sustainability on the ground (recycling bins, a strategy on coffee cups, health and safety compliance) in order to believe you really mean it. They need to get excited about sustainable packaging and sustainable product development, and feel they are part of a team. Probably the easiest way to make all this happen is to involve people cross-functionally in committees.

Now that you have engaged everyone, don’t forget to keep measuring your progress and results, and communicating these back to your stakeholders. Once they see the improvement, they will be more interested in getting on board. If the improvement really looks good, it will enhance your company’s reputation in a meaningful way. This will attract customers, and make your employees proud and productive. And the journey continues.

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How to Make your Company Sustainable, In 2 Simple Steps
Real Results – 8 Ways To Implement Sustainable Initiatives at Your Facility http://www.pgae.com/news/real-results-8-ways-to-implement-sustainable-initiatives-at-your-facility/ Tue, 14 Feb 2017 09:03:37 +0000 Golf Environment Organization http://www.pgae.com/?p=11616 Golf facilities around the world make use of the Golf Environment Organization’s (GEO) OnCourse online programme to manage their club's sustainability and save]]>

Golf facilities around the world make use of the Golf Environment Organization’s (GEO) OnCourse online programme to manage their club’s sustainability and save money at the same time.

Here we look at just a few examples of how anyone involved with a golf facility can make impactful and sustainable changes leading to economic, environmental and social benefits…

Electric Equipment Initiative

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Bear Trace at Harrison Bay, USA

GEO Certified® 04/2014

Conversion of 18 pieces of gasoline powered golf course maintenance equipment to fully electric powered units allowed The Bear Trace at Harrison Bay to eliminate the use of over 9,000 gallons of gasoline in a single year saving over $27,000, cutting point source CO2 emissions by over 182,000 pounds of CO2, and eliminating possible contamination from leaking or spilled oils or fluids.

More Biodiversity, Greater Savings, Less Maintenance

Carnoustie Golf Links, Scotland

GEO Certified® 12/2013

By minimizing the amount of amenity turfgrass and increasing the size of habitat corridors Carnoustie Golf Links has saved between £2–3,000 since becoming GEO Certified®.  Apart from the cost savings, the creation of habitat corridors acts as a buffer zone between sensitive landscapes and has ensured that habitat fragmentation is kept to a minimum.  With scrub management programmes, the club continues to identify further ways in which to increase these areas.

Reduced Mowing Results in Cost and Nature Benefits

Golfpark Nuolen, Wangen, Switzerland

GEO Re-Certified® 12/2012

By reducing the mowing of the out of play areas by 15%, Golfpark Nuolen has saved €2-3,000 annually.  Subsequently this has encouraged the re-naturalization of native areas and the creation of wild life corridors.

On top of this, any fertilizers that are required for the course have been purchased in bulk in conjunction with 3 other clubs.  This has resulted in savings of €8,000 to each club and bulk purchasing allows for attaining a better product at a 15-30% lower price.

Finding Cost-savings Through Efficient Energy

Coventry Golf Club, West Midlands, England

GEO Certified® 05/2012

Looking to lower electricity use – and costs – Coventry Golf Club completely re-lamped the club’s buildings with low energy, sensor lighting. Solar panels were also installed to help reduce costs, with the excess electricity produced being sold back to the energy company. In the first full year since the work was done, the club cut their electricity costs by 28.5%, amounting to £8,000, which will offset their investment quickly.

OnCourse to Cost and Water Saving at The Home of Golf

St Andrews Links, Fife, Scotland

GEO Re-Certified® 12/2014

After an audit of the irrigation system prompted by their participation in the OnCourse programme, some simple steps were taken to become more efficient. For example, the arcs of water nozzles were altered to avoid watering rough while some others were removed altogether. Overall they accomplished a 25% reduction in water use on a greens cycle and a 20% reduction for the fairways; Subsequently the energy use for the pumping system has also reduced.

Turning Waste into Savings

Broken Sound Club, Florida, USA

GEO Certified® 07/2014

As part of their overall commitment to sustainability Broken Sound Club invested in a Central Composting Facility, to turn all available biodegradable waste into sterilized organic mulch. This is spread on the fairways and used in the landscape beds. $12,000 was saved on fertilizer expenditure in year one and the money invested in the composting facility will be recouped within 4-5 years.

Cost-savings No Rough Task

Hill Side Golf & Country Club, Vihti, Finland

GEO Certified® 07/2012

Finland’s first private golf club considered the amount of rough being maintained and with a more efficient rough maintenance plan they achieved cost savings of €3,500 in 2012. 392 fewer hours were spent mowing rough while fuel and machinery use was reduced. Savings in fuel were part of overall net savings of over €10k from the overall improvements in club resource and management efficiencies.

Looking to Locals for Supplies Cuts Costs and Footprint

Highlands Country Club, Tennessee, USA

GEO Certified® 09/2014

Situated in a remote part of Tennessee, the new outlook Highlands Country Club took to make its supply chain more local has been very successful. For example, the uniforms and sanitary products are now purchased from local suppliers who opened the door to negotiate a better deal for the club; while boosting the local economy and thereby strengthening the outside view of the golf club; and a new point of pride in being part of lowering overall pollution from transport.

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For more ‘Real Results’ examples visit www.golfenvironment.org/get_involved/real_results.


OnCourse® Programme

The benefits of sustainability for golf businesses are beyond question, the hold-up has been simply where and how to start. In part, because of misconceptions that sustainability must first require study, policy writing and a vast amount of planning.  That doesn’t need to be the case. Today there are a few practical tools available that can take the guesswork and hassle out of sustainability.

A good place to dive in is OnCourse®, a free web-based programme that guides you step-by-step, asking the right questions about the key sustainability hotspots around your course, clubhouse, and maintenance facility. OnCourse® will help you tell the story of the good work you’re already doing and enable you to improve; saving time and money, enhancing the natural qualities of your course, and boosting your reputation. Rather than spending a lot of time in discussions, drafting a detailed policy or developing a sustainability plan, your focus can be on actions that bring immediate benefit.

OnCourse® serves as your policy and plan – a statement of your commitment, and the path to accessing all the benefits sustainability can bring. And, if you would like to, you can use your OnCourse® report to qualify you for GEO Certified®, golf’s international ecolabel and a great platform for communications and publicity.

The programme is free, widely endorsed and only takes a few minutes to sign up at www.golfenvironment.org/oncourse.

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Real Results – 8 Ways To Implement Sustainable Initiatives at Your Facility
Business Planning to Grow Your Facility http://www.pgae.com/ask/business-planning-to-grow-your-facility/ Thu, 08 Dec 2016 14:34:49 +0000 Mark Taylor http://www.pgae.com/?p=17487 England Golf's Mark Taylor explains how golf facilities can be more business-minded in their planning and why this is more important than ever...]]>

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:

  1. Where the business is now?
  2. Where is the business going?
  3. How will we get there?
    1. Who is responsible?
    2. How will you keep score?
      1. Developing a strategic planning framework
      2. 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

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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

Operational Analysis

Most facilities cover the following core areas of work, with each facet requiring structured analysis on:

  • Governance
  • Golf Course
  • Finance
  • Food & Beverage
  • Members

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Member Analysis

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

P.E.S.T Analysis

Political factors:

  • Government regulations regarding health, hygiene, food regulations, and food standards.
  • Equality legislation.
  • Government policies, these may include licenses, inspections by environmental health.

Economic factors:

  • 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.

Social factors:

  • 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.

Technological factors:

  • Effective technology may be a decisive factor for business marketing (social media, apps).
  • Tee time bookings.

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Competitor Analysis

  • 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’

Mission –

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

Vision –

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

Values

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.

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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…

  • Mission
  • Vision
  • Values
  • Core areas of work
  • Aims

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

Top Tips…

  • 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

Keeping Score

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

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Business Plan Structure

Keep it simple…

  1. Cover & Contents
  2. Executive Summary
  3. Background/Context
  4. Situational Analysis – including financial
  5. Strategic Summary – Mission, Vision, Values, Aims
  6. Operational Plan – for each aim:
    1. SMART Goals
    2. Initiatives
    3. Accountability
    4. Measurement

And Finally…

‘Schedule time to work on your golf business, rather than in your business’

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Business Planning to Grow Your Facility
Recruiting Women to Golf http://www.pgae.com/ask/recruiting-women-to-golf/ Fri, 09 Sep 2016 13:28:47 +0000 Mark Taylor http://www.pgae.com/?p=16607 Women are potentially one of the largest growth areas in golf..So, is your Golf Club looking at new ways to recruit and retain women golfers??]]>

Why offer a women’s Open Day?

Women are potentially one of the largest growth areas in golf..So, is your Golf Club looking at new ways to recruit and retain women golfers??

Firstly it is important to understand your golf club and completing a club profile may help to identify your club’s strengths and weaknesses, analysing and highlighting why your current women members re-join every year and why they may have left?

Open Days help raise the profile of golf within the local community, change perception of golf and;

  • Promote your club as a welcoming and safe environment
  • Increase revenue streams
  • Increase membership

The majority of women will want an offer that reflects;

  • Value for money
  • Something that will fit into their lifestyles
  • Range of opportunities
  • How golf can keep them fit and active and help them meet new people.

Listed below are ideas of where you could recruit women…

  • Member referral schemes (wives or partners)
  • Local businesses
  • Target other sports and activities (hockey, tennis, fitness classes, etc.)
  • School teachers and mums
  • Chamber of commerce
  • Local Women’s Groups (Women’s Institute, Mums in the Know).

Create a facility/club plan

Creating a plan will help you establish…

Key elements:

Club members; meet and greet buddies to show around facility, inform members of the activity and they will help find participants

Professional; in charge of activity keep the activities fun and ensure participants get to see or play the game (golf course/shortened holes/par 3)

Equipment; all equipment provided

Dress Code; Casual attire, trainers can be worn

On the day..

  • Clear signage for visitors
  • Have your volunteers and staff ready to welcome
  • Include a Club ‘Walk Around’ to familiarise participants
  • Collect contact information to use for future communications
  • Provide information of follow-on opportunities
  • Collect pictures and testimonials

After activity..

  • Ask for feedback from participants
  • Allow time for social engagement include drinks and cake in your offer
  • Collect contact information to use for future communications
  • Set up a social group from your attending participants
  • Provide information of follow-on opportunities further coaching, social events, discounted driving range and bring a friend offers
  • Collect pictures and testimonials and celebrate your success with local press and media!
  • Send a thank you letter or email including details of follow-on opportunities.
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Recruiting Women to Golf
Promoting Sustainability http://www.pgae.com/ask/promoting-sustainability/ Thu, 04 Aug 2016 07:23:26 +0000 Aston Ward http://www.pgae.com/?p=12095 Sustainability has been a buzzword for a few years now but how can individuals and businesses use the benefits of sustainable efforts to their advantage...?]]>

Sustainability has been a buzzword of sorts for a few years now but how can individuals and businesses use the benefits of sustainable efforts to their advantage when it comes to communications and marketing?

Publicity and brand value, as well as potential avenues in sponsorship and funding are just a few reasons that show why effort should be invested in communicating sustainability initiatives as effectively as possible – here are some ways to promote and market your activities:

Address Perceptions

Sustainability means different things to different people. Most will often automatically default to thinking of the environment, but there are various other dimensions such as societal and economical elements.

Their views on sustainability efforts may also be focused on the initial cost implications or potential lack of impact for the effort that goes into the activities.

Focus comms on explaining what sustainability is, how it affects your stakeholders, and what benefits will come from the activities you are undertaking. You could do this through FAQ (Frequently Asked Question) pieces, external case study examples of similar activations that have been successful, question and answer sessions, or video walkthroughs of plans/ideas.

Engage All Stakeholders

Create clear, easy to consume communications channels to engage with the stakeholders that will be influenced by your initiatives such as local governments, your customers/members, academy pupils, local residents surrounding your facility, the local golf community, etc.

Your best approach here would be to initially identify all the different stakeholders involved and find out what they want, what their concerns are, and how you can communicate with them effectively. Then you can build a plan about what messages go to which stakeholders and when.

You could then take that a step further and involve stakeholders at key points (e.g. inviting local government officials to milestone events, or running open evenings with members).

Be Transparent

2015 is seemingly a turning point for transparency in business – keeping people in the loop on what is happening and why will help them feel involved in the process ensuring understanding of actions and their impact.

Publishing reports or findings, regular updates by email, in-depth explanations of actions authored by key decision makers, and clear policies/standards will help your stakeholders stay informed.

Be Prepared

Prepare in advance for questions, queries, challenges and more from various stakeholders. Use the information gathered during stakeholder research to create a library of answers for people to use and tap in to.

The other key here is to make sure your entire team/staff are on-board and understand what is happening, how to explain it, and how to answer consistently so everyone is on-message.

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Shout About Your Good Work

Lastly, make sure you shout about the outcomes of the work as much as possible through articles, features, interviews and more. Contact local authorities or media outlets to show off how your business is promoting sustainability – you never know what sort of assistance, funding or business could be attracted when you get good PR and marketing behind your activities.

If you have any other ways of promoting sustainability initiatives then email them to aw@pgae.com

This article originally featured in International Golf Pro News. Visit the IGPN Page to find out more and subscribe for free.

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Promoting Sustainability
“Committed to the Advancement of Golf…” Tony Bennett – A.S.K. Workshops http://www.pgae.com/news/committed-to-the-advancement-of-golf-tony-bennett-a-s-k-workshops/ Sun, 03 Jul 2016 15:29:31 +0000 Tony Bennett http://www.pgae.com/?p=15713 A.S.K. Workshops Speaker, Tony Bennett, explains more about his presentation subject matter for the 2016 #ASKWorkshops event...]]>

PGAs of Europe Director of Education & Membership, Tony Bennett, will speak at the 2016 A.S.K. Workshops in Hungary on 26th July – here Tony explains some of the background to his presentation…


There is nothing much wrong with Golf. The game that we play, which by my definition is a sport where we take a stick, hit an object to a target that is either in, on or above the ground, is old. In fact, Golf is very old. 600 years or more we are informed. Well if it’s old it must be good, otherwise, it would have died, or at least be on its death bed.

Solo Synchronised Swimming (Los Angeles Olympics 1984), yes I could not believe it either, is one such sport that is no longer practised, while Croquet, Tug-of-War and Rackets are little more than niche sports.

The demise of Golf is exaggerated, it is not dying as some people would have you believe. Perhaps, as is the case with an old car or house for that matter, Golf could have done with a little renovation and restoration towards the end of the last century, but when things were going well, why would it change?

Initiatives such as Sprint6Golf and Golf Educatif will at least, in my opinion, make a difference. Each keeps the fundamental principles of golf at their core and address the key issues of time, cost and difficulty. The PGA Junior Golf League is growing the number of kids engaged in the sport in the USA and soon in Europe, while Golf Europe’s GoGolf Europe project is now being trialled in five countries with the objective of keeping adolescents in the game for longer.

Golf development is about making sure that people have a chance to take part in the sport, ensuring that all sections of the community are aware of available activities, and letting them know where they can get involved. I have long been an advocate of the golf professional having the capability to transform into a Golf Developer, a bit like Clark Kent who works as a newspaper journalist for the Daily Planet, only to change into Superman at a moments notice. Golf Developers ooze a passion for the sport, organise golf related activities, distribute information, arrange taster sessions, coaching and put like-minded people together. The golf developer is a facilitator who makes things happen.

If you want some things to change, then you have to change some things. Often it starts with ourselves. Perhaps you can consider the five questions that always get me thinking about the realisation of the things that I want to achieve.

To achieve my objective:

  1. What type of person do I need to become?
  2. What attitude do I need to have?
  3. What do I need to learn?
  4. Who can help me to develop the attitudes, skills and knowledge that I need?
  5. What barriers do I need to overcome?

See you in Budapest.

For more information and to register visit http://eur.pe/ASKWorkshops-Hungary

For more information about the 2016 A.S.K. Workshops visit http://eur.pe/ASKWorkshops-Hungary, follow @PGAsofEurope on Twitter and search #ASKWorkshops, or like the PGAs of Europe Facebook Page.

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“Committed to the Advancement of Golf…” Tony Bennett – A.S.K. Workshops
Retaining Members – The Strategic Approach: Mark Taylor – A.S.K. Workshops http://www.pgae.com/news/retaining-members-the-strategic-approach-mark-taylor-a-s-k-workshops/ Mon, 27 Jun 2016 14:41:11 +0000 Mark Taylor http://www.pgae.com/?p=15769 PGA Professional, Mark Taylor, explains what Golf Professionals need to know about their members...]]>

England Golf’s Mark Taylor will speak at the 2016 A.S.K. Workshops in Hungary on 26th July – Here Mark explains how he supports and advises facilities on how to best implement club centric strategies to drive participation, recruit, and retain current membership trends.

What you need to know about your members

Maintaining current membership levels has never been harder for most golf clubs.

Increased competition, declining loyalty, the perception that a golf club membership does not offer value for money, all create an increasingly cluttered landscape in which clubs have to compete.

But the good news is that contrary to popular industry perception, the growth of the game has never been so strong. Participation levels are rising – more than 5% among adults in 2006, whilst interest in the game among juniors and women is also growing. That means no shortage of potential customers!

However, what is changing is the way that people are choosing to participate. Joining a club is no longer high on the agenda for golfers; hence the decline in waiting lists for many golf clubs and an increasing emphasis on protecting their existing member base.

In order to do so and to attract new members, it is vital that clubs understand what members want. They are the most valuable asset and a healthy membership base that actively uses your club and its facilities should be at the core of any successful golf club.

What clubs need to know about members;

20% of your customers are responsible for 80% of your business is equally true within golf clubs. Every club has core membership, who regularly play in competitions, support club fixtures, buy tickets to social occasions, use the bar and restaurant and support the pro.

The fact is that golf clubs know little if anything about their membership and much of their decision- making is based on anecdotal evidence rather than hard facts.

By finding out more about existing membership clubs can not only generate more income through them but can also find and target potential new members with a similar profile to the existing best customers.

3 MUST knows about members:

Who they are

This includes their name, address, contact details and also their age, marital status, family, occupation. This is not intrusive but designed to help you help them get the most from their membership

Their playing habits

Maintain records of when they play, who they play with, how often they play, do they enter competitions, do they put handicap cards in, have they ever had a handicap?

How much they spend

This may seem mercenary but do they use the bar, or catering facilities, do they support the professional, if not then why not? If they do, then this is just as important to know why – what motivates them?

Other things to know

As well as the obvious areas about what they do and how they use their membership, current membership intelligence can also be used to help improve what is offered to existing and prospective members. What members think about their golf club and what they expect from their membership can be real eye openers – sometimes uncomfortable ones but often easy to act upon.

For more information and to register visit http://eur.pe/ASKWorkshops-Hungary

For more information about the 2016 A.S.K. Workshops visit http://eur.pe/ASKWorkshops-Hungary, follow @PGAsofEurope on Twitter and search #ASKWorkshops, or like the PGAs of Europe Facebook Page.

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Retaining Members – The Strategic Approach: Mark Taylor – A.S.K. Workshops
Data Collection – Performance Monitoring To Ensure Efficient and Effective Course Management http://www.pgae.com/ask/data-collection-performance-monitoring-to-ensure-efficient-and-effective-course-management/ Thu, 19 May 2016 19:10:33 +0000 The R&A http://www.pgae.com/?p=12117 Keeping a record of how the golf course is performing, in financial, playing and environmental terms is essential if the facility is to be well run...]]>

Keeping a record of how the golf course is performing, in financial, playing and environmental terms is essential if the facility is to be well run, offer good value to its customers and be able to justify its operation to the wider community.  Course management that provides quality playing surfaces and which cares for the environment is dependent on good decision making based on facts and figures. 

Economic Performance

The course is your prime asset and you need to know what you are spending on its upkeep and where your money is going. The annual audit is usual practice for business. Keeping a record of income and expenditure is essential if the performance of the business is to be measured and analysed so that management can adjust practices to assure future prosperity.

The golf course can make up 70% or more of a golf facilities total expenditure and it is important that costs and revenue from course-related activity are tracked and reported on.  Club and course managers need to find a means of:

  • Providing clear information to committees and boards
  • Assessing where more money can be made and less spent
  • Demonstrating the success of management practices
  • Developing an even more efficient and effective programme

There are software programmes available to enable data recording and reporting, with the most basic being a simple spreadsheet.

On average, 60% of direct costs related to the course will be for staff. The greenstaff’s time is, therefore, precious and should not be wasted. Do you know where, on the course, the staff spend their time?

Surveys have shown that on some courses, up to 27% of staff time can be spent looking after bunkers! Are you able to prioritise time so that the areas golfers consider most important – the putting surfaces and green complexes – receive the most attention? See the real value from your staff by focusing their efforts on the areas of the course that will improve your business prospects.

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Playing Performance

The performance of the golf business is directly related to the performance of the golf course.  The course is the primary asset for the business. So, why not audit the performance of the course in a similar way to that of the business?

If you can demonstrate that your management provides consistently good or improving performance of putting surfaces, then the club knows that it is investing wisely in the course and in you and your staff.  The following assessments should be undertaken on a regular basis:

  • Holing Out Test. Records the final outcome of putting surface preparation – the reliability of the surface in terms of getting the ball in the hole.
  • Smoothness and trueness. Available through the Sports Turf Research Institute (STRI) Programme.
  • Firmness – a key measure when it comes to the receptiveness of surfaces, ball reaction on landing on the green and the year-round playability related to drainage.
  • Trueness/smoothness – important to consider ways of reducing surface imperfections that interfere with the roll of the ball.
  • Speed – useful to assess the consistency of putting surfaces, both through the year and between greens.

In addition to these playing performance criteria, there are critical agronomic measurements that, if assessed regularly, will inform turf management and ensure healthier turf and better playing performance – these are soil moisture and organic matter.

Target ranges can be set for all of the above, but these must be realistic and achievable within the confines of the site and available resources.

Environmental and Social Performance

The Course Management team need to keep a record of the inputs required to present the course to a good year-round standard, related to cost and playing performance targets.

Holding good information and reporting on water, pesticide, fertiliser and energy use and waste production are key elements for the golf course operation and also for justifying the course management programme in environmental and social impact terms. Golf facilities should be transparent in this regard to demonstrate that the game is a responsible user of land that does not pollute.

Beyond this, use of top dressing and other materials has an impact on budgets and the environment, be it directly related to the golf course or in terms of the supply chain and where these materials are sourced.

The Golf Environment Organization (GEO) OnCourse® Programme provides an excellent means of recording and reporting on these aspects of sustainability performance.

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Making Data Work For You

The R&A has produced a list of Evidence Fields, which is available from its website, randa.org. This is a list of financial, playing performance and greenkeeping practice data that needs to be collected and analysed if the performance of the golf course is to be monitored and improved.

Much of this data can be used to achieve environmental certification. The financial information can also be used to assess the benefits to the business of going through such a certification process.

Recording data is only of value if it is used for the benefit of the course and the business. Interpretation of results may require expert assistance, particularly with regard to the agronomic elements. The club management team must work together to get the best out of the golf facility and this has to reflect well on their contribution to the business.

This article appears courtesy of The R&A. For more information visit golfcoursemanagement.randa.org.

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Data Collection – Performance Monitoring To Ensure Efficient and Effective Course Management
Ten Facts About Golf in Celebration of Earth Day 2016 http://www.pgae.com/news/ten-facts-about-golf-in-celebration-of-earth-day-2016/ Sun, 17 Apr 2016 13:46:42 +0000 PGAs of Europe http://www.pgae.com/?p=15155 As part of the celebration of “Earth Day” on April 22, here are 10 facts about golf that help promote the sport and the environment]]>

Golf is a sport for a lifetime that delivers more than 2 million jobs and $69 billion in annual economic impact while contributing $3.9 billion per year for philanthropic causes — more than all other sports combined.

A professionally managed golf course also can demonstrate environmental stewardship and provide a place to meet exercise and fitness goals. Just walking 18 holes, for example, can burn more than 2,000 calories.

As part of the celebration of “Earth Day” on April 22, here are 10 facts about golf that help promote the sport and the environment:

  1. Golf courses are professionally managed landscapes where environmental stewardship is important – from using water and nutrients more efficiently to implementing improved methods of erosion control.
  2. In general, the golf industry is striving to deliver firm playing surfaces that are better for everyone and improve the bottom line. More than two-thirds of golf courses report that they are keeping turfgrass drier than in the past.
  3. The golf industry is continually investing in research to identify drought-tolerant grasses and improve water conservation through best management practices.
  4. Golf courses continue to adopt water conservation practices, reduce irrigated acreage and use innovative technologies, such as targeted irrigation systems and ground moisture measurement tools, along with weather monitoring systems, providing the science to water only when and where it is needed.
  5. Irrigated areas on golf courses have decreased by more than 14,000 acres between 2006 and 2014.

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  1. Use of recycled water has increased by 32.7 percent from 2006 to 2014. Recycled water now counts for 25 percent of all water used on golf courses.
  2. Golf courses routinely have recycling programs to reduce and reuse.
  3. More than 90 percent of a typical golf course is comprised of turfgrass, a water body or other natural areas that prevent erosion, filter runoff, and provide for cooler temperatures when compared to urban settings.
  4. More than 70 percent of acreage on an 18-hole golf course is considered green space that provides benefits to the ecosystem, reduces maintenance and supports wildlife habitat, including protected species.
  5. Through governmental affairs involvement, professional education and public information, the golf industry continues to promote environmental responsibility as a widespread industry practice.

Find out more about Earth Day at www.earthday.org and tweet using #EarthDay2016. For more information form the World Golf Foundation visit www.worldgolffoundation.org.

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Ten Facts About Golf in Celebration of Earth Day 2016
The Language of Sustainability http://www.pgae.com/ask/the-language-of-sustainability/ Sat, 02 Apr 2016 16:33:10 +0000 Golf Environment Organization http://www.pgae.com/?p=12100 The ability to articulate the true social and environmental impact of your development has never been more important...]]>

What people understand as ‘sustainable’ is evolving all the time. Our collective knowledge is ever broader and deeper. Individuals and governments are better equipped to identify the real from the perceived. The overall bar of expectation is rising and the ability to articulate the true social and environmental impact of your development has never been more important.

Governments, environmental and community-based organisations around the world are using new tools and concepts to try to determine how much and what forms of economic and leisure development can be deemed ‘sustainable’ in locations. It’s recognised as important for society to try to understand at what point development moves from being beneficial to damaging.

Of course, none of this is an exact science, nor is it rigorously and consistently applied around the world, and much depends on the type of development being considered.

However, the following methodologies are being applied to help stakeholders gain a better understanding of when development will start to exceed the aesthetic, biological, energy, water, social and cultural capacity of our surroundings.

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Cumulative Impacts

Cumulative impacts result when the effects of one action are added to or interact with other effects.

For example, several golf developments in close proximity may give rise to significant landscape, ecological or resource effects in combination, when none would have by itself. Analysis of cumulative impacts is important in identifying the carrying capacity of a bio-diverse area under threat by humans, known as a hotspot, to accommodate multiple golf developments. Such analysis can also help reveal appropriate thresholds for sustainable development.

On the other hand, clusters of golf facilities that have been well planned, designed and constructed can help to preserve the landscape and ecosystem fabric of larger units of land, and bring them under conservation-based management for decades and centuries to follow. Golf can be associated positively with increasing the ecosystem and resource-carrying capacity of a region.

Carrying Capacity

Broadly, carrying capacity refers to the amount of an activity or resource use that a system can support sustainably, without showing economic, social and environmental deterioration and decline in the longer term.

This fundamental concept underpins modern-day approaches to sustainable development. Strategic planning now seeks to define the capacity of areas to accommodate various levels of development of different types, and when accumulated.

Carrying capacity studies can be beneficial to developers in anticipating and addressing competition for limited resources and customers. Such studies can also help in phasing development. Energy and water capacities might increase through the use of new technologies, increasing the amount of permitted development.

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Thresholds

By better understanding the carrying capacity for golf development for a defined area or region, taking into account its other land and resource use needs, it is possible to
begin to identify thresholds for sustainable development.

Although not usually precise, given the complexity and subjectivity involved, this concept is increasingly tied to strategic land-use planning decisions.

For example, when governments release parcels of land for macro-scale tourism development, they often set a pre-determined ratio for the number of golf courses and density of residential units for that area. Doing so creates a planning framework that protects sensitive and vulnerable ecological and cultural zones. This approach also ensures that soft landscapes will be present amongst harder elements of development.

Threshold-guided plans for development are often of great interest to the local community, which may wish to see economic development and the creation of employment and wealth, but which also wants to protect other valued assets, such as access to green space, protection of historical sites and biodiversity hotspots.

A Common Language for Discourse

In many places where concern about the sustainability of golf development exists, the concepts of cumulative impact, carrying capacity, and threshold level can be used to help understand whether the concerns are legitimate or unfounded. Often people simply want to know that thoughtful consideration of environmental issues has guided the types and overall levels of economic and tourism development.

Within reason, the application of these concepts can help everyone generate an understanding of issues that need to be considered when seeking to evaluate sustainable levels of golf development.

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OnCourse® Programme

The benefits of sustainability for golf businesses are beyond question, the hold-up has been simply where and how to start. In part, because of misconceptions that sustainability must first require study, policy writing and a vast amount of planning.  That doesn’t need to be the case. Today there are a few practical tools available that can take the guesswork and hassle out of sustainability.

A good place to dive in is OnCourse®, a free web-based programme that guides you step-by-step, asking the right questions about the key sustainability hotspots around your course, clubhouse, and maintenance facility. OnCourse® will help you tell the story of the good work you’re already doing and enable you to improve; saving time and money, enhancing the natural qualities of your course, and boosting your reputation. Rather than spending a lot of time in discussions, drafting a detailed policy or developing a sustainability plan, your focus can be on actions that bring immediate benefit.

OnCourse® serves as your policy and plan – a statement of your commitment, and the path to accessing all the benefits sustainability can bring. And, if you would like to, you can use your OnCourse® report to qualify you for GEO Certified®, golf’s international ecolabel and a great platform for communications and publicity.

The programme is free, widely endorsed and only takes a few minutes to sign up at www.golfenvironment.org/oncourse.

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The Language of Sustainability
Futurist For a Day – Preparing for Change By Thinking Ahead http://www.pgae.com/ask/futurist-for-a-day-preparing-for-change-by-thinking-ahead/ Tue, 19 Jan 2016 10:08:21 +0000 Ian Randell http://www.pgae.com/?p=13988 The first IGPN of the year is always a good opportunity to reflect on our Annual Congress, Gala Award winners, and International Team Championship, but also a c]]>

The first IGPN of the year is always a good opportunity to reflect on our Annual Congress, Gala Award winners, and International Team Championship, but also a chance to look ahead at the coming year.

During the Congress in December we took time to look back on the first 25 years of the PGAs of Europe as part of the anniversary celebrations, but we also took a prospective look forward.

So much has changed about the golfing landscape in the past 25 years – the Association has increased its membership from 13 countries to 37, in that time showing how golf has continued to spread across the continent – and so much has changed in the wider world as well. Think about the introduction of the Internet, email, social media, the ever-changing political situations across the planet, technological advancements around the world and more.

Futurists spend their time using what we know and where we have come from to work out where we might go next. So using some of the growth predictions and trends futurists have come up with, we put together our thoughts based on facts such as:

  • By 2028 62% of the global population will live in cities
  • Wearable technology will be controlled by thought and many jobs will be replaced by artificial intelligence
  • In 2028 1 in 3 people will live beyond 100 years of age

Using just this tiny handful of statements we considered what effect they might have on the PGAs of Europe, its member PGAs and golf in general – after some thought and discussion even these few things would be game-changing.

And like any good futurist would do we posed some questions:

  • How would golf cope with such a high percentage of its players living in heavily populated areas? What facilities would need to exist? What would the effect be on existing facilities? (We also speculated that these could perhaps be solved in part by projects such as France’s 2018 short courses or through new forms of urban golf facilities)?
  • How can golf be prepared for advancements in technology and communications, and how can it be ready to embrace new technologies as and when they come along?
  • Golf is a sport for life and as such is an aging population a great opportunity for golf to grow? And how can the PGA Professional and golf in general take advantage of this?

Of course foretelling the future is not always that accurate but speculating with educated guesses is never a bad thing. Take the upcoming golf season and 2016’s Majors – how will golf’s new big-three of Rory, Jordan and Jason follow up on their successes of last season.

Much like the European Ryder Cup Team too then… A glance at each week’s leaderboard on the European Tour reveals so many candidates for Darren Clarke’s team it could drive you mad trying to pinpoint a team any time soon – especially with the likes of some exciting young Europeans like Danny Willett, Matthew Fitzpatrick, Bernd Wiesberger, Andy Sullivan, Thomas Pieters to name but a few – which could result in the team looking very different to how it did at Gleneagles. The PGAs of Europe office has selected our picks for the team so we’ll reveal how close any of us were later in the year.

From all of us at the PGAs of Europe, best wishes for a happy and successful 2016!

This article originally featured in International Golf Pro News. Visit the IGPN Page to find out more and subscribe for free.

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Futurist For a Day – Preparing for Change By Thinking Ahead
Communications & Golf Development http://www.pgae.com/news/igpn-news/communications-golf-development/ Fri, 15 Jan 2016 16:16:36 +0000 Aston Ward http://www.pgae.com/?p=10735 Golf Development is the lifeblood of the PGAs of Europe and will continue to grow more and more important as time goes on.]]>

Golf Development is the lifeblood of the PGAs of Europe and will continue to grow more and more important as time goes on. 

We have many people working on various elements of developing golf across the continent and further afield including coaching, development of programmes, monitoring of standards etc.  But something I can assist with in my capacity as Communications Manager is two-fold:

1 – Communicating Best Practice Examples and Initiatives

Golf development activities are taking place all the time all over the world but it is safe to say that very few of them will be exactly the same.  Of course general concepts and ideas are followed but locally they will be heavily tailored to the market.

Where communications can help is in developing a library of good practice examples that can then be applied to other places – the best bits of one programme and the best of another could mix and be adapted to create a very effective activity somewhere else.

These resources can be collected and shared effectively with organisations that are interested in creating an initiative or programme with, for example, the assistance of the PGAs of Europe’s Golf Development Professionals and Education Committee.

2 – Raising Awareness of Development Activity

Communications then plays a part in sharing information and updates about development activities.  Using case studies and sharing success stories helps to bolster the resources mentioned earlier but it also gives coverage to specific initiatives that can help them.

A project or programme may also want to gain coverage to promote their work and its outcomes, promote the host facilities, the key supporters, etc.  Often programmes will be supported by commercial entities so promotion will give them coverage and hopefully spur on continued investment and support.

There are some excellent examples of golf development activities out there and plenty put a strong emphasis on promoting what they do.

A good example of strong promotion and coverage from an initiative is this week’s Drive, Chip & Putt Championship – The PGA of America, USGA and Masters Tournament’s nationwide youth golf development program final.

Of course three major organisations in the game have a lot of resources behind them but their methods of communication can still be learnt from and replicated.

Daily articles from the finals, blog posts, interviews with competitors, videos of the event, and fantastic imagery all make for a well formulated comms plan – take a look at www.drivechipandputt.com for examples of how to build content and communicate it around an initiative.

This article originally featured in International Golf Pro News. Visit the IGPN Page to find out more and subscribe for free.

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Communications & Golf Development
Will A Computer Be Taking Your Future Job? http://www.pgae.com/ask/will-a-computer-be-taking-your-future-job/ Sun, 10 Jan 2016 17:27:14 +0000 Coaching4Careers http://www.pgae.com/?p=13841 But have you really considered the threat of technology? Are your strengths going to future-proof your career? Will you need to work on your weaknesses to find]]>

At the start of each brand new year it’s always a good idea to do a bit of personal SWOT analysis. But have you really considered the threat of technology? Are your strengths going to future-proof your career? Will you need to work on your weaknesses to find a role within a world of automation?

It’s more than 30 years since Time magazine famously named the computer as its ‘Man of the Year’. Our square-faced companions have been encroaching further into our working lives ever since.

Technological unemployment, as it’s known, has long been key issue in the word’s industrialised nations. Between 1900 and 2000 the percentage of Americans employed in agriculture decreased from 41% to just 2%, while the number of US manufacturing workers has fallen by two thirds since World War II.

American employees are by no means alone in their predicament: according to a joint study by Oxford University and Deloitte, about 35% of UK jobs are at high risk of being taken over by computers during the next 20 years. The study ranked around 400 professions against a series of key skills, including social perceptiveness, negotiation and persuasion, to see which were most under threat.

The roles of financial officer, bookkeeper and legal secretary came top, with a 97-99% risk of being automated over the next two decades. Meanwhile, social workers, teachers and therapists can rest easy, with the chance of these roles being ceded to a machine calculated at around 1% or less.

Most roles fall between these two extremes, but the good news here is that there are plenty of ways you can future-proof your career against the inexorable march of the machines.

To start with, you can position yourself in an industry where there is expansion and therefore less need for cost-cutting and automation. Areas such as health and nutrition, sustainability and clean energy are likely to be important sources of job creation going forward.

You should also think about the kind of soft skills you need to be developing alongside your core professional competencies. Think problem-solving, adaptability, and communication, in particular, listening and negotiation skills.

Then of course there is the ‘can’t beat ’em, join ’em’ argument: as long as there’s technology, there will be a need for people who can harness and interpret that technology. It’s never too late to start picking up basic skills in areas such as coding and website design. Codeacademy.com is just one of a number of free, online platforms that can help get you started.

As history has shown us, professions and entire industries will come and go over time. However, by embracing this technological shift and maintaining a broad skill set, you can stay one step ahead of the curve.


This content appears courtesy of Abintegro, experts in career management, transition technology & e-learning for today’s modern, mobile and technology-savvy workforce – Find out more at www.abintegro.com

Credit: Bcdwire; NPR; BBC; HuffingtonPost

Brain vector designed by Freepik
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Will A Computer Be Taking Your Future Job?
GoGolf! Fit For the Future – KLM Open Sees Launch of Project Which Unites the Golf Industry to Increase Youth Participation http://www.pgae.com/news/gogolf-fit-for-the-future-klm-open-sees-launch-of-project-which-unites-the-golf-industry-to-increase-youth-participation/ Wed, 09 Sep 2015 18:54:24 +0000 Golf Europe http://www.pgae.com/?p=12743 The 2015 KLM Open is the venue for the launch of an ambitious project to unite the golf industry in its quest to increase participation in golf across the EU an]]>

Release On Behalf of Golf Europe:

The 2015 KLM Open is the venue for the launch of an ambitious project to unite the golf industry in its quest to increase participation in golf across the EU and promote golf to the next generation of young players.

The GoGolf Europe project will support five European countries – the Netherlands, the Czech Republic, Estonia, France and Portugal – in a three year initiative designed to test innovative new access pathways to golf for European youth while also documenting the unique health benefits which the sport can provide to all.

The new GoGolf Europe project has successfully secured co-funding from the European Commission under Erasmus+, the EU programme for Education, Training, Youth and Sport for 2014-2020.

Led by the European Golf Association (EGA), the project will unite the National Golf Governing Bodies of the five participating countries alongside the PGAs of Europe, the European Observatoire of Sport and Employment and the University of St Andrews as the official research partner. Alongside the funding support from the European Union, co-financing will also be provided by the European Tour and the EGA.

The GoGolf Europe launch event at the Kennemer Golf and Country Club on Wednesday 9th September will use the prestigious setting of the KLM Open to showcase the project. As the project aims to increase youth participation in golf, the launch will actively involve local children who will get a behind–the-scenes view of the European Tour championship venue and the chance to play golf and receive coaching with local professionals.

ZANDVOORT, NETHERLANDS - SEPTEMBER 09: Alvaro Velasco of Spain gives golf tips to local children as part of the GoGolf Europe project during the KLM Open ProAm held at Kennemer G & CC on September 9, 2015 in Zandvoort, Netherlands. (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images)

Richard Heath, General Secretary of the European Golf Association (EGA), the organisation leading the project, commented: “Europe has excellent capacity for golf with over 6,700 courses and some 7.9 million citizens already playing the sport. Nonetheless, we are facing significant challenges in effectively engaging young people to take up the sport and we are actively seeking innovative new solutions for growing youth participation”.

Florence Brugmans, youth coordinator of the Netherlands Golf Federation, stated: “We are delighted to host the launch of the GoGolf Europe project – increasing youth participation in golf is high on our agenda in the Netherlands. We think the GoGolf project can make a difference in enthusing youth for the sport. We are pleased to be part of a project that unites the entire golf sector in pursuit of this goal.”

Fredrik Lindgren, Head of Corporate Responsibility & Sustainability at the European Tour said: “The European Tour players were all inspired to start playing in their youth, and the European Ryder Cup team’s successes have led to innovative legacy programmes in the countries hosting The Ryder Cup, so we are proud to stand alongside our Golf Europe partners and further support the structured development of the sport in Europe with GoGolf.”

For more information, please contact the Golf Europe office: info@gogolfeurope.eu.

IMAGE CREDITS – Getty: Youngsters at the launch of GoGolf Europe at the KLM Open on Wednesday
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GoGolf! Fit For the Future – KLM Open Sees Launch of Project Which Unites the Golf Industry to Increase Youth Participation
PGAs of Europe Supports The European Week of Sport http://www.pgae.com/news/pgas-of-europe-supports-the-european-week-of-sport/ Mon, 07 Sep 2015 08:47:47 +0000 Golf Europe http://www.pgae.com/?p=12701 As part of the Golf Europe group, the PGAs of Europe is proud to support the European Week of Sport taking place from 7th - 13th September across the continent.]]>

As part of the Golf Europe group, the PGAs of Europe is proud to support the European Week of Sport taking place from 7th – 13th September across the continent.

The European Week of Sport (EWoS) aims to promote sport and physical activity across Europe. The Week is for everyone, regardless of age, background or fitness level. With a focus on grassroots initiatives, it will inspire Europeans to #BeActive on a regular basis and create opportunities in peoples’ everyday lives to exercise more.

Golf Europe is coordinating a variety of activities related to EWoS and the #BeActive campaign, including free lessons from PGA of Belgium Professionals in nets and on synthetic greens at The Square in Brussels as part of the European Commission’s multi-sport exhibition.

Along with this activity each of the days has a theme relating to the overall message of the week:

  • Monday 7th – The week will be officially opened by the Commissioner for Sport, Tibor Navrascs, and EWoS ambassadors.
  • Tuesday 8th – FOCUS DAY: Education.
  • Wednesday 9th – FOCUS DAY: Social inclusion, and Flagship event.
  • Thursday 10th – FOCUS DAY: Workplaces– inviting businesses to take part in a team putting competition.
  • Friday 11th – FOCUS DAY: Outdoors.
  • Saturday 12th – Club & fitness centre focus and the opportunity to communicate the benefits of joining a club such as members becoming more active, creating a social network, healthy living, and promoting an active and outdoor lifestyle.

There are a wide range of activities for various sports and activities taking place across Europe not just for the week but until the end of September 2015. EWoS will also return during September each year ensuring the message of promoting participation in sport and physical activity and the benefits of both continues in years to come.

For more information on the European Week of Sport and to find an event near you visit http://eur.pe/EuropeanWeekofSport

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PGAs of Europe Supports The European Week of Sport
PGAs of Europe Supports ‘European Week of Sport: 7-13 Sept’ http://www.pgae.com/ask/pgas-of-europe-supports-european-week-of-sport-7-13-sept/ Mon, 10 Aug 2015 15:50:32 +0000 PGAs of Europe http://www.pgae.com/?p=12339 The PGAs of Europe as part of 'Golf Europe' is proud to support the European Week of Sport from 7th - 13th September 2015.]]>

The PGAs of Europe as part of ‘Golf Europe’ is proud to support the European Week of Sport from 7th – 13th September 2015. Find out more about the week here: ec.europa.eu/sport/week.

WHAT IS IT ABOUT?

The European Week of Sport is a new initiative of the European Commission to promote sport and physical activity across Europe. The Week will generate new activities and also build on already existing successful initiatives in the European, national, regional or local context. This European-wide campaign will inspire Euro- peans to #BeActive during the Week and encourage them to stay active all year long.

WHY ?

Sport and physical activity contribute substantially to the well- being of European citizens. However, the level of physical activity is currently stagnating and even declining in some countries. The European Week of Sport is a response to this challenge. The lack of physical activity not only has a negative impact on society and people’s health, but also results in economic costs. In addi- tion, sport has the potential to strengthen messages of tolerance and reinforce citizenship throughout Europe. Promoting the role of sport as a means of social inclusion will help address ongoing challenges in European society.

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OBJECTIVE ?

The European Week of Sport aims at promoting participation in sport and physical activity and raising awareness about the numerous benefits of both. The Week is for everyone – regard- less of age, background or fitness level. It should bring together individuals, public authorities, the sport movement, civil society organisations and the private sector. Through the
focus on grassroots initiatives, the Week will in- spire Europeans to #BeActive on a regular basis and create opportunities in people’s everyday lives to exercise more.

WHEN?

The first European Week of Sport will take place from 7th to 13th of September 2015. For the first year, the participating coun- tries will have the opportunity to carry out activities and events at national level until the end of the month. The European Week of Sport is not designed as a one-off event. It will take place annually in September as from 2015.

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HOW?

The European Week of Sport will be structured around 4 Focus Days, i.e. Education environment, Workplaces, Outdoors, Clubs & Fitness centres. A wide range of initiatives and activities will be organised around these settings at different levels (EU, national, local and regional level) and with the involvement of many actors. In Brussels, the European Commission will organise the open- ing of the Week with strong media involvement and a Flagship Event. The overarching campaign theme for the Week “#BeActive” should also become the reference framework for existing campaigns, events and activities throughout the year.

WHO?

The European Week of Sport is a European Commission-led ini- tiative. The implementation of the Week across Europe is largely decentralised and takes place in close cooperation with the national coordinators and with the many different partners who are firmly committed to support the Week. An Ambassador Team will also help implement the different promotional activities.

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PGAs of Europe Supports ‘European Week of Sport: 7-13 Sept’
Golf Holds Key to Solving ‘Crisis of Inactivity’ http://www.pgae.com/news/research-partnership-aims-to-drive-golf-participation/ Sun, 19 Jul 2015 16:59:48 +0000 PGAs of Europe http://www.pgae.com/?p=12232 Golf could hold the key to tackling Europe’s current epidemics of physical inactivity, obesity and low youth participation in sport.]]>

Golf could hold the key to tackling Europe’s current epidemics of physical inactivity, obesity and low youth participation in sport.

As the world’s best golfers compete in the 144th Open Championship in St Andrews this week, major organisations from the European golf sector have gathered with researchers at the University of St Andrews in an effort to better describe the health benefits of golf, and to explore ways to increase participation across the EU.

The new GoGolf Europe project has successfully secured co-funding from the European Commission under Erasmus+, the EU programme for Education, Training, Youth and Sport for 2014-2020. The project will unite five European countries – the Czech Republic, Estonia, France, the Netherlands and Portugal – in a three year initiative designed to test innovative new access pathways to golf for European youth while also documenting the unique health benefits which the sport can provide to all people.

Richard Heath, General Secretary of the European Golf Association (EGA), the organisation leading the project, commented: “Europe has excellent capacity for golf with over 6,700 courses and some 7.9 million citizens already playing the sport. Nonetheless, we are facing significant challenges in effectively engaging young people to take up the sport and we are actively seeking innovative new solutions for growing youth participation.”

In conjunction with the EGA, the project will unite the National Golf Governing Bodies of the five participating countries alongside the PGAs of Europe, the European Observatoire of Sport and Employment and the University of St Andrews as the official research partner. Alongside the funding support from the European Union, co-financing will also be provided by the PGA European Tour and the EGA.

Dr Rehema M White, of the University of St Andrews’ Sustainable Development Department, said: “Europe is currently experiencing a crisis in physical inactivity and we are going to focus on showcasing and documenting the particular contributions which golf can make to overcoming these worrying trends. The GoGolf project unites an excellent group of partner organisations with real potential to deliver positive and impacting change for the industry and we are very much looking forward to collaborating and providing support from the research perspective over the next three years.”

Current rates of physical inactivity are worryingly high, as evidenced by the recently published 2014 Eurobarometer report on Sport and Physical Activity which found that:

  • 59% of EU citizens never or seldom exercise or play sport at least once a week
  • Almost three-quarters of EU citizens (74%) say that they are not members of any club, a 7% increase since 2009.

Alongside the GoGolf Europe project mobilisation meetings taking place during The Open in St Andrews this week, representatives from the University of St Andrews will also take part in further meetings concerning the growing global research agenda around the health and wellbeing benefits of golf participation. One such area of synergistic collaboration will be with scientists at the University of Edinburgh.

“Amongst all sports, golf offers a unique suite of health opportunities.- Dr White

Dr White continued: “Amongst all sports, golf offers a unique suite of health opportunities. The aim of our research is to help us understand how to encourage young people to take up sport in general, and golf in particular, to improve their health and wellbeing.

“In Scotland we are lucky enough to have an existing network of golf clubs and courses, providing a mix of facilities. Anyone can pick up a club and chase their ball across the windblown and sheep grazed Askernish Golf Course on the Isle of South Uist, or around the green fairways of well-established Banchory or on one of the many urban courses scattered across Glasgow and Edinburgh. Visitors are offered a diverse choice of facilities around the country. Perhaps best of all, golf has one of the broadest age brackets – from 8 to 80 years old.”

More information on the GoGolf Europe project can be obtained by contacting the EGA office at info@ega-golf.ch


The Europe 2020 strategy, which outlines the European Union’s vision for the 21st century, included sustainability as a key driver for economic growth and resource efficiency.  In this context, the GoGolf Europe project’s ambition to grow the sport of golf in a sustainable way is in line with, and contributes to realising, Europe’s 2020 vision.

The GoGolf research project is funded by the European Commission under Erasmus+, the EU programme for Education, Training, Youth and Sport for 2014-2020.  It will be implemented over three years.

The GoGolf project aligns with Golf Europe’s strategy to promote golf as a growing sport, valued as a force for good in European society.  Golf Europe is a group of Europe’s major golf stakeholders collaborating to develop the sport and enhance golf’s contribution to European society.

The European Golf Association (EGA) represents the sport of golf throughout Europe and works on behalf of 46 member countries and their respective National Golf Associations. Approximately 7.9 million European citizens play golf in an industry that contributes over €15.1 billion to the European economy.

In conjunction with the EGA, the project will unite the National Golf Governing Bodies of the five participating countries: the Czech Republic, France, Estonia, the Netherlands and Portugal, alongside the PGAs of Europe, the European Observatoire of Sport and Employment and the University of St Andrews as the official research partner. In addition to the funding support from the European Union, co-financing will also be provided by the European Tour and the EGA.

Click here to download the ‘2014 Eurobarometer Report on Sport and Physical Activity’

For more information, please contact the Golf Europe office: info@ega-golf.ch

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Golf Holds Key to Solving ‘Crisis of Inactivity’
Le Golf National Born to Sustainability Management http://www.pgae.com/news/le-golf-national-born-to-sustainability-management/ Tue, 30 Jun 2015 17:00:56 +0000 Golf Environment Organization http://www.pgae.com/?p=12110 Le Golf National, near Paris, host of the 2018 Ryder Cup, has been recognised for its role in advancing sustainable business practices within the golf industry ]]>

Le Golf National, near Paris, host of the 2018 Ryder Cup, has been recognised for its role in advancing sustainable business practices within the golf industry by earning the GEO Certified® mark. The international symbol signifies Le Golf National’s excellent value to nature and communities and efficient use of natural resources.

Le Golf National’s highlights of contributions for nature and people:

  • 40 hectares – 30% of the site – are dedicated to grassland habitat and the area of unmaintained rough has increased to improve habitat connection.
  • Significant reduction in maintained turfgrass areas to enhance shrubs, wetlands, and other natural areas critical to wildlife protection
  • More than 50 beehives surrounded by planted wildflower areas
  • Biological pest control and compost teas used on fairways
  • Investment in water efficiency with new storage reservoir, irrigation system and sustainable drainage installation over the next two years
  • Strong, mutually beneficial community links including long-term local business relationships
  • A free practice facility for school students available during parts of the day
  • Winners of the first Generali Trophees du Sport Responsable in the golf category of 2012
  • Inclusive golf atmosphere that promotes golf for a wide range of players through a diverse offering of golf courses

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Click here to view Le Golf National’s full GEO Certified® Report

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Le Golf National Born to Sustainability Management
Sustainable Sport, Sustainable Business http://www.pgae.com/news/sustainable-sport-sustainable-business/ Sun, 28 Jun 2015 16:17:12 +0000 Ian Randell http://www.pgae.com/?p=12092 June's Issue of IGPN looks in depth at the future health of our sport and how the promotion of its benefits can be greatly assisted by taking a sustainable appr]]>

June’s Issue of IGPN looks in depth at the future health of our sport and how the promotion of its benefits can be greatly assisted by taking a sustainable approach to its development.

Growing the sport of golf in an environmentally, socially and economically sustainable way, aligns with, and contributes to, realising Europe’s 2020 Vision that enables us to influence government and EU policies and create more positive perceptions of our sport.

More people playing more golf more often has a positive impact on its economic contribution, a healthier population, and as long as this is done in an environmentally-friendly manner, then it is easy to promote golf’s benefit to society.

Here are just a few figures from various sources that highlight these positives:

  • Golf’s economic contribution to Europe is €15.1 billion
  • The sport employs approximately 400,000 people across Europe
  • There are proven health benefits such as golfers burning up to 800 calories per round, a reportedly 40% lower mortality rate and up to a five-year increase in life expectancy
  • Up to 70% of a well managed golf course can be used as habitat creation for wildlife
  • Golf courses, new or old, can enhance the local biodiversity of an area by providing a greater variety of habitats than intensively managed agricultural areas

There are a number of recent initiatives, such as Golf Europe’s ‘GoGolf!’ and the European Week of Sport, which are both about increasing participation in sport, and promoting the benefits of getting involved.

Further examples of the proactive steps being taken by golf can be seen through the work of GEO and the recent report on Ryder Cup’s Green Drive and how it has become one of the world’s leading sustainable events through a variety of activities that will really set the standards for events of any scale in the future.

The BMW PGA Championship is always a highlight on the European golf calendar and their environmental off-course work was hugely strong with their re-use initiative and the donation of materials to various projects and charities.

The PGA Championship week at Wentworth was also special for the PGAs of Europe as we began the celebrations of our 25th Anniversary year with a Business Club where we brought our Corporate Partners together under one roof. We take great pride in the longevity of many of our Partnerships and the loyalty that exists on both sides – a slightly different take on the word sustainable!

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Maintaining social, economic and environmental sustainability in golf and in golf’s businesses is something that should be high on everyone’s priority list and it is important that we promote its understanding and impact as much as we can! We would be delighted to hear of any examples of sustainability – feel free to email them to aw@pgae.com.

This article originally featured in International Golf Pro News. Visit the IGPN Page to find out more and subscribe for free.

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Sustainable Sport, Sustainable Business
GOLF EUROPE – Growing Golf Sustainably http://www.pgae.com/news/golf-europe-growing-golf-sustainably/ Sun, 28 Jun 2015 16:05:05 +0000 Golf Europe http://www.pgae.com/?p=12085 Golf Europe, a group of European golf’s major stakeholders, will aim to progress golf’s contribution to European society and the focus it receives within the co]]>

Approximately 7.9 million European citizens play golf in an industry that contributes over €15.1 billion to the European economy.

Golf Europe, a group of European golf’s major stakeholders, will aim to progress golf’s contribution to European society and the focus it receives within the community. The Europe 2020 strategy, which outlines the European Union’s vision for the 21st century, included sustainability as a key driver for economic growth and resource efficiency.

In this context, Golf Europe’s activities of growing the sport of golf in an environmentally, socially and economically sustainable way are in line and contribute to realising Europe’s 2020 vision.

Golf Commits to European Week of Sport – September 7-13

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The stakeholders of Golf Europe united at the Annual European Union Sports Forum to sign a letter of intent with the European Commission committing their support for the 2015 European Week of Sport.

Golf Europe will promote the #BeActive campaign and participate by collectively mobilising the golf community network (governing bodies, national federations, clubs, coaches, sponsors, professional players and media) to raise awareness of the societal benefits of golf participation through a range of activities including:

  • Implementing golf development initiatives across several Member States with structured coaching being delivered by PGA Professionals;
  • Showcasing golf’s European youth engagement strategy while simultaneously promoting sport’s value for health and wellbeing;
  • Utilising the inspirational role of professional golfers – notably the team captains of both the Solheim Cup and the Ryder Cup – to communicate to young people and to support the delivery of the European Week of Sport objectives; and
  • Developing and implementing legacy and outreach programmes, aligned with social and environmental policy agendas, enabled by the success of major golf events in Europe.

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GoGolf!

A Collaborative Project on Sport, Health & Participation Achieves European Commission Erasmus+ Award.

Under Erasmus+, the EU programme for Education, Training, Youth and Sport for 2014-2020, the European Commission has awarded funding to the GoGolf! project, which be focused on sport, health and participation with transnational collaboration and two high-level aims:

  • Increasing the evidence base for the health benefits of golf for the European citizen
  • Driving increased participation in the sport at a pan- European level

In the context of EU policy, the project aims to target the recently published Eurobarometer report on Sport and Physical Activity, which found that:

  • 59% of EU citizens never or seldom exercise or play sport at least once a week
  • Almost three-quarters of EU citizens (74%) say that they are not members of any sports club, a 67% increase since 2009.

With golf functioning as a major participation sport across Europe, the GoGolf! project will seek to identify how the European golf community can come together to address some of these impending health challenges for the European Community.

A key aim of GoGolf! is to compose a multi-national, multi- stakeholder planning and delivery team which can bring a diverse set of skills, perspectives and resources to the work being undertaken.

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GoGolf! Project Hosts First Expert Advisory Board Meeting in Paris

The first Expert Advisory Board (EAB) meeting of the GoGolf Europe project was hosted by the French Golf Federation on 13th of May 2015 at Le Golf National in Paris, venue of the 2018 Ryder Cup.

The meeting gathered a broad group of representatives from the golf sector, with the project lead, the European Golf Association (EGA), being joined by The R&A, the French Golf Federation, the European Tour and the European Disabled Golf Association (EDGA). Expert contributors from outside the golf sector were also present, including the Gender Hub, Think Young, The Association For International Sport for All (TAFISA) and the European Observatoire of Sport and Employment (EOSE).

Following a welcoming message given by the EAB Chairman, Antti Peltoniemi, Past President of the EGA, clarifying the objectives of the meeting and the role of the EAB, an introduction was given to all of the participating organisations and their specific areas of contribution to the project.

A detailed presentation of the GoGolf Europe initiative, along with its objectives and planned outcomes, was subsequently delivered.  The discussions emphasised the importance of working towards making golf an enjoyable, accessible, inclusive and beneficial sport for youth across Europe.

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GOLF EUROPE – Growing Golf Sustainably
Ryder Cup Sets New Standards For Sustainable Sporting Events http://www.pgae.com/news/ryder-cup-sets-new-standards-for-sustainable-sporting-events/ Wed, 27 May 2015 15:29:47 +0000 PGAs of Europe http://www.pgae.com/?p=11511 The 2014 Ryder Cup yet again stepped forward as one of the world’s leading sustainable events, generating significant benefits to the community and environment,]]>

Ryder Cup Sets New Standards for Sustainable Sporting Events

The 2014 Ryder Cup yet again stepped forward as one of the world’s leading sustainable events, generating significant benefits to the community and environment, a new report released this week has concluded.

The Green Drive, led by key partners and engaging dozens of suppliers and contractors, ensured reductions in the event’s resource footprint, while maximising opportunities to deliver positive social and environmental legacies.

To download a copy of the report visit: www.golfenvironment.org/ryder_cup_2014_greendrive

Key findings in the report, ‘A Review of The 2014 Ryder Cup Green Drive’, include:

  • High standards of environmental management and community outreach carried out by Gleneagles Resort, and Junior Ryder Cup venue, Blairgowrie Golf Club, including ecologically led site protection and restoration plans;
  • Promotion of the Scottish Food and Drink Sustainability Charter ensured that local, seasonal and healthy food which met high welfare standards was sourced.  As an example, Fabulous Feasts sourced 68 percent of all produce from Scottish suppliers;
  • Careful site planning and protection with monitoring by the Green Drive team ensured zero environmental incidents resulted from the staging of the event;
  • Morrisons Construction substantially cut the footprint of one of the few aspects of permanent infrastructure – recycling on-site materials to avoid more than 600 lorry loads and 28,000 road milesduring the construction of the park and ride bus terminals, a key project in reducing car mileage and congestion around the venue;
  • The lower carbon transport plan resulted in more than 7,500 additional spectators per day travelling by rail, straight into the newly refurbished Gleneagles rail station, and 181,744 spectators travelling on collective bus transportation from the three remote park and ride hubs;
  • As part of the successful Zero Waste to Landfill policy, supported by lead contractors William Tracey and Spectrum, an extensive reuse and recycling scheme ensured that PVC, glass, timber and more than 70 percent of the vinyl, carpet and Astroturf from the main hospitality suites was redistributed to community groups;
  • An effective energy management strategy, including a daily ‘power down’ and the use of bio-fuel in generators resulted in Aggreko delivering a 10 percent reduction in anticipated temporary power carbon emissions;
  • In partnership with the Scottish Government, Perth and Kinross Council and the Scottish Golf Union, four Green Drive Legacy projects continue to deliver valuable community / environmental activities across Perthshire.

Edward Kitson, Ryder Cup Match Director, said “We are delighted to see how many practical results the Green Drive delivered across such a wide range of aspects of the event – from the venue management to staging to legacies and also in communicating and promoting sustainability. This information is now being shared with the organisers of The 2018 Ryder Cup in Paris, and at the same time the bidding nations for The 2022 Ryder Cup are currently outlining their sustainability plans in their submissions.  With the European Tour Green Drive also moving forward apace, it’s clear to see just how much importance we place on bringing value to the environment and communities alongside world-class sport”.

Richard Lochhead, Scotland’s Cabinet Secretary for Rural Affairs, Food and the Environment, said:  “The global spotlight was firmly fixed on Scotland in 2014, and The Ryder Cup was the perfect platform to showcase our nation’s breathtaking natural environment and world-class food and drink.  The Ryder Cup Green Drive included many innovative measures to make the event as sustainable as possible, including promoting the fantastic natural larder we have on our doorstep. I now look forward to seeing how this valuable experience can help raise knowledge and standards for the golf sector, as well as other major events in Scotland during our Year of Food and Drink and beyond.”

The Green Drive was coordinated by the Golf Environment Organisation (GEO), a non-profit group which has worked closely as the sustainability partner to Ryder Cup Europe since 2006.   GEO worked collaboratively with a wide-range of partners and stakeholders including the likes of Gleneagles Resort, Event Scotland and Scottish Natural Heritage.

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Jonathan Smith, Chief Executive of GEO said:  “Ryder Cup Europe continues to demonstrate an outstanding commitment to sustainability, and The 2014 Ryder Cup Green Drive has shown again how important it is to take a team approach at major sporting events. We look forward to continuing to work with Ryder Cup, other golf tournaments and golf organisations around the world, to build upon successes and lessons from Gleneagles to further golf’s position as a sustainability leader in sport.”

Dr Susie Tomson, Project Manager for the initiative added: “Having worked with the London Olympics it is fantastic to see events such as The Ryder Cup taking yet further steps to deliver across all aspects of sustainability. Ryder Cup has really set the benchmark for other golf tournament organisers.”

Linked to research carried out by Sheffield Hallam University, the report also identified the success of efforts to promote the initiative and raise spectator awareness – leading organisers to conclude that this was a clear area of opportunity for the future:

  • 25 percent of spectators were aware of the Green Drive initiative
  • 65 percent were aware of the Zero Waste Policy and promotion of recycling
  • 24 percent noticed the FairTrade information at food outlets
  • 45 percent were willing to consider a financial contribution to the initiative if they knew it was going towards worthy social and environmental causes around the event

To download a copy of the report visit: www.golfenvironment.org/ryder_cup_2014_greendrive

Zero Waste Scotland, a member of the 2014 Ryder Cup Green Drive steering group, has published a new guide to help event organisers to plan and deliver environmentally sustainable events.  The guide, which builds on learnings from high-profile events hosted by Scotland during 2014, including the Ryder Cup 2014 along with the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games. The guide can be can be downloaded at http://www.resourceefficientscotland.com/resource/how-plan-and-deliver-environmentally-sustainable-events.

For more information on the Ryder Cup visit www.rydercup.com.

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Ryder Cup Sets New Standards For Sustainable Sporting Events
Green to the Fore at BMW PGA Championship http://www.pgae.com/news/green-to-the-fore-at-bmw-pga-championship/ Sat, 23 May 2015 17:35:49 +0000 PGAs of Europe http://www.pgae.com/?p=11493 A new sustainability initiative is running at this year’s BMW PGA Championship, which will see the provision of over 8,000m2 of carpet, lino and Astroturf donat]]>

Arena Group re-use initiative making key contribution to European Tour Green Drive

A new sustainability initiative is running at this year’s BMW PGA Championship, which will see the provision of over 8,000m2 of carpet, lino and Astroturf donated to local charities and community projects after the event has finished.

Initially introduced at the 2014 Ryder Cup, where 5,000m2 of materials from its temporary structures were re-used, Arena Group and Green Element – Arena’s retained environmental management consultancy – worked alongside The European Tour and Golf Environment Organization (GEO), to bring this week’s project to fruition.

The European Tour has now enlisted Arena Group and Green Element to extend the scheme to other events including the Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open, Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, The Senior Open Championship presented by Rolex and the Ricoh Women’s British Open.

Dave Withey, Arena UK & Europe sales and marketing director, explains: “Many of our products have long life-cycles which means that what we can’t re-use directly at other golf tournaments and events, can be a valuable resource to locally organisations. Some of the high quality materials we offer can make a real difference to groups such as schools and charities and we are really looking forward to continuing this work with The European Tour.”

Arena Group and Green Element are calling for any local charities or organisations that would like to get involved to register for a collection by completing the short form at this link: https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/ArenaWentworthPGA. Local scrap stores and charities have already expressed interest and signed up to the programme.

William Richardson, MD at Green Element, concludes: “This is a really important project and it’s vital if we want to ensure the long term sustainability of major sporting events. We’re also working with Arena Group on other projects including Wimbledon and the AEGON Championships; it’s great to see so many sporting organisations investing in sustainability and understanding the difference it can make.”

The re-use initiative is part of European Tour’s broader sustainability programme, The European Tour Green Drive, which reaches out across tournaments and the venues they are played at. The programme aims to enhance nature, conserve resources and support communities at events across the Tour’s annual schedule.

Fredrik Lindgren, Head of Corporate Responsibility at The European Tour, said: “The European Tour recognises the importance of hosting ever-more sustainable events. One aspects of this is minimising the consumption of resources, and working towards zero waste to landfill.

“The re-use initiative is one way in which we are reducing our impact here at the BMW PGA Championship this year and we are delighted to be working with Arena, Green Element and Golf Environment Organisation on this initiative, to provide local community groups with these useful new materials.”

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Green to the Fore at BMW PGA Championship