Let’s face it; the new target demographic that many clubs are after now is the “middle something’s” that have young kids i.e. Family market. Yet the product the club typically has on offer is for the “old “something’s” that don’t want to change!
This is seen in an old clubhouse, no kid’s area, and an unwelcoming membership to any newcomers even though the newcomers are the potential saviour for the club.
I see it time and time again – a club that says they want and need the juniors, younger people and new members, yet they don’t make the necessary big changes to attract them. They talk the talk but don’t walk the walk!
Walk into many clubs nowadays and you still see some old codgers (and new codgers) sitting at the end of the bar, in the same actual seats they have been sitting in for the past 20 years, as they would never allow them to be changed, as that is the way it’s always been!
They sit there drinking a few drops talking about how great it was in the old days. How they used to have full comps and a bank account to match.
Fast forward a few decades and now the same, but older codgers with even older chairs and clubhouse are saying “Oh my god did you hear that the beer prices are going up .10cents!”
“How dare they, don’t they know we built this club and owe us!” They are also asking- where is everyone, they must not be doing their job! Do you remember when…? Oh the good ole’ days!
I SAY, ‘GET OVER IT’!!!
Times have changed and times are getting tougher. Many of the club’s bad decisions were made from previous Boards and stubborn members, with a current Board now trying to deal with the aftermath and hopefully not making the same mistakes! We live in a different world and the bigger strategies and more importantly the club culture needs to change.
The old codgers are hitting the twilight age and don’t usually worry too much about what the club will need to do in the next generation of trying to exist. They actually don’t want change as it will ultimately have the most impact on “their” membership and “their” access to course. They don’t want annual dues to go up each year, even though the club is barely making ends meet, and the clubs main asset – the golf course are slowing deteriorating. Stop being so selfish and stand up and do what is right for the next generation of the club!
We read the numerous reports and stories that “we as an industry” must change to promote getting more women, juniors and families. As well as that the national bodies “must do more”, to get people in the game and what they are doing “isn’t working” etc.
So many bloody opinions but in the end these members don’t” have any of their own skin in the game. “They” as Board Members can sometimes make knee jerk and politicised decision on behalf of the club, stuff the place up, and then can walk away at any time. Why aren’t these Board members (ie Directors held more accountable?) There are some government legislative changed underway in NSW to improve in this and hopefully will then happen in the rest of the country.
I say get off your butts’ people; it’s up to you to make the change an hold your club accountable, the future depends on it!
Originally published Inside Golf