Best Practices

Ideas to remember when you’re hiring

Challenges navigating the “talent pool”

Golf course managers take care of the employees and the employees take care of the customers. That’s a time-honored belief that shows how vital it is to find the right people and keep the very good ones from moving on prematurely.

At a rapid-fire pace, we’ll look at a few strategies worth considering when a spot or two or three needs filling.

  • “Hire for X, train for Y,” is a useful concept for any staffing-up scenario. Not every candidate’s experience will match exactly with your needs, but a good work ethic and an eagerness to learn through on-the-job training can go a long way.
  • Be creative. Consider if you could hire two, part-time employees instead of one full-time employee and split the coverage. If the job doesn’t require knowledge of the game, expand your candidate pool by looking at talent that has experience in customer service.
  • Ask open-ended questions that require more than a “yes” or “no” response to get the most out of an interview.
  • Entice candidates by sharing any growth and development opportunities. Is there a path to management or could they help with event planning or social marketing campaigns?
  • Be willing to listen to ideas from everyone in the workplace, especially your front-line workers. You never know the next source of a great idea. The renowned writings of Alan Robinson and Dean Schroeder (check out “The Idea-Driven Organization”) show hundreds of examples of how valuable these sets of fresh eyes can be.
  • And if you’re hiring a golf instructor to teach and promote the game, there’s new thinking on that. According to early research, golfers who get involved with lessons, clinics, club fitting and other game-improvement activity spend more money at the facility. Find a teacher who has tracked his or her spend-per-student (on golf, food, merchandise, etc.) and also kept count of beginner students they turned into golfers. Create incentives to encourage them to work that same magic at your place.