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Registration Now Open: Australian Club Industry Governance & Leadership Forum

POSTED ON May 4, 2024 @ 2:55 pm

This event will position your club at the forefront of best-practice governance processes amongst Australian golf clubs

The golf club industry has never had a better opportunity than the one that has presented post-COVID.  The extent to which long-term sustainability can be materially impacted will be singularly determined by the quality of governance and decision-making evident within golf club Boardrooms across the country.

As GBAS moves around the country, engaging with Club General Managers and Club Boards, it is evident that there is a varying quality of governance within our golf clubs.  Observing that good governance processes typically lead to better club outcomes, solid club operating models and long-term financial sustainability, despite the strong momentum delivered by Covid, the industry still remains vulnerable to the quality of its own governance processes.

Wanting to action our observations and to help ensure that the industry can indeed fully optimise its fortunes post-COVID, this event has been created to shine a focused light on club governance. Its goal is to bring governance to the forefront of industry discussion, generating direct conversations with current club leaders as both directors and club managers gather together for the first time to hear from a number of industry-wise topic experts.

A report on the findings from recently conducted industry research will be released detailing the current golf club governance state of play comparing it to wider corporate and not for profit benchmarks. With stability and alignment both being key pillars of good governance, the report also identifies recent club Board turnover levels and the contrasting views held by Club Managers and Club Directors on current governance performance. This report will set a baseline for the industry from which all clubs can become great clubs.

Concluding the Forum, an industry best practice reference document will be released. Drawing from national and international publications, this document will help Clubs understand the possible journey ahead as they seek to improve their governance performance and organisation outcomes.



Wednesday 12th June, Yarra Yarra Golf Club, 3.30 pm – 6.30 pm


Thursday 13th June, The Lakes Golf Club 3.30 pm – 6.30 pm


John Wylie AC – The Importance of Good Governance in Sport (30 mins)

John’s address will focus on the importance of good governance in sport, Illustrating how golf club board room thinking should indeed try to mirror the practices evident in corporate board rooms around Australia.

Ray Cronin – Governance at Great Clubs (30 mins)

Ray is the founder of Club Benchmarking and an authority on Club governance in the USA. Ray will share with us his learnings from over 1,000 board rooms in the USA, and the mistakes typically being made. Ray will share his top 5 most effective governance practices evident in some of the world’s great clubs.

Nick Barnett  – Golf Club Governance State of Play – Is it good or not so good? (30 mins)

Nick is the CEO of corporate research firm BoardSurveys. Nick will share with us the findings from the recently conducted governance research within Australian clubs, contextualised with wider Australian and Not For Profit Board Governance benchmarks. The presentation will also detail the level of alignment present between Boards and Management.

Margot Foster AM – Governance in the trenches (20 mins)

Margot’s presentation will focus on how to effectively get governance practices changed and how Club Board’s can navigate their way to better governance structures.

Gregg Patterson – The importance of good governance from a Club leader perspective (30 mins)

As a club manager of over 30 years, Gregg will share with us the importance of good governance from a Club management perspective. Sharing his key learnings over time, Gregg will detail his top 5 most critical governance practices that enable Club Managers to thrive.

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