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AUTUMN 2018 In this issue






he first part of 2018 has been a busy time for the GMA Board as it continues to develop a proposed ‘one GMA model’ for consideration by the state GMA Associations and the members. The proposed model will aim to maximise the ability of GMA to service its members through improved strategic alignment, increased member benefits and greater efficiency in resourcing and administration. The model will also look to ensure our industry partners, and corporate partners, are provided with improved services and business outcomes. GMA EO, Jim Cail, has looked to engage with state executives and GMA members as part of this process, to ensure members are well consulted and to ensure the proposed model is capable of meeting the needs of the GMA membership and supports GMA members in their professional development, health and wellbeing. The GMA Board is currently refining the proposed governance and business model based upon consultation and will hopefully be in a position to present it to State executives for feedback throughout June and July. Along with the ‘one GMA model’, GMA has also been busy ensuring ‘business as usual’ requirements continue to be enhanced. This includes: - GMA will shortly announce that registrations for the first Australian managed Business Management Institute (BMI) program will open. The two proposed “Club Management - BMI” courses will be accredited by the Club Managers Association of America. GMA has engaged Dr Geoff Dickson to be the lead facilitator of the two courses scheduled in Melbourne from the 15th to 19th October and in Sydney from the 22nd to 26th October. Geoff comes to us with outstanding credentials, having also managed the GMA NZ BMI Program for a number of years. Further information on the courses will be promoted shortly.

GMA Executive

- The GMA Member Assistance Program, proudly supported by the Qantas Golf Club, has now been activated. GMA members, along with a members’ immediate family, will have access to a 24-hour counselling service of highly qualified, registered psychologists and counsellors across Australia. The service is highly confidential and there is no disclosure of any information to GMA relating to your sessions. The program will provide short term counselling assistance for a range of issues including depression, anxiety, mental illness, relationships, grief and loss, work related stress and other issues you may be facing in your personal or

work life. The GMA Member Assistance Program, proudly supported by the Qantas Golf Club, is a key component of the organisation’s ability to support the health and wellbeing of all our members. Contact details are available from the Members section of the GMA website. - Expressions of interests have now opened for the GMA-CGE 2018 FAM & Professional Development Tour to China’s Hainan Island. The trip takes GMA members to two great venues – Mission Hills Haikou, the world’s largest golf resort and Sheraton/ Dunes Shenzhou Peninsula, site of some spectacular golf. While there are plenty of opportunities for golf to be played, specific professional development components of the trip include a behind the scenes look at the resorts’ food and beverage and golf operations activities, introductions to senior hotel and golf management staff and the ability to create life-long networking opportunities with other GMA members on the trip. Having undertaken this trip in 2017, I would highly recommend giving this serious consideration - it certainly was a special experience. - The GMA Members Genesis Cup is on again in 2018. This competition sees GMA members automatically entered into the Genesis Golf Competition with a dedicated leaderboard tracking all GMA members as part of a separate competition. The two GMA members at the top of this leaderboard at the conclusion of series one and two of each competition, and who have increased their club’s participation in the Genesis Golf Link Cup by 50 players, will each be flown to Sydney to enjoy a weekend of golf at one of Australia’s best courses and a day at the Australian Open in the Genesis Marquee. - GMA, in partnership with Hostplus, was delighted to provide the opportunity for a small number of GMA members to participate in a Hostplus “Health Wealth Program” which is run in conjunction with the South Sydney Rabbitohs NRL Club. This opportunity will see selected members participate in a structured health, fitness and wellbeing program conducted over a 6 week period by high performance staff at the South Sydney Rabbitohs, utilising their elite training venue in Redfern. This concept is something we would like to expand further into other states. In closing, I wish all members the very best over the coming months and look forward to providing more exciting news in the next edition of the e-mag, including confirmation of the 2019 National Conference venue in Melbourne.

About GMA Golf Management Australia is the professional organisation serving the needs of managers within Australian Golf. This e-magazine is now a major communications channel and deliverance of up-to-date information for managers involved in all areas of golf administration throughout Australia. Membership to GMA is open to all Golf Club Managers and administrators throughout Australia. We hope that the e-magazine will broaden the resources available to managers – aiding the fulfillment of their occupational objectives.

Publisher GOLF INDUSTRY CENTRAL Morlo Pty Ltd ACN 123 872 784 ABN 1812 3872 784 PO BOX 4743, Robina Town Centre Robina, QLD, Australia 4230 Contents may not be reproduced without written permission. Views expressed in editorial contributions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of this publication and it’s management.

Andrew Gay Chair

Paul Paterson Deputy Chair

Cathy Neagle Director

Anthony Masters Director

Aaron Muirhead Director

Brad Dawson Director

Peter Busch Director

Jim Cail Executive Officer






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Golf Management Australia is pleased to announce the newly developed GMA Member Assistance Program, which is proudly supported by the Qantas Golf Club.

• Addiction and substance abuse • Work related stress • Financial coaching – helps with managing financial difficulties and budgeting

The Member Assistance Program (MAP) is provided to GMA members and their immediate family through our service provider, Acacia Connections, who are a national independent service provider, who specialise in supporting people in dealing with personal or work-related issues in a positive way.

• Legal referral – assists with short term legal referral to necessary legal services • Sleep disorders • Dietician support • Eating disorders

The MAP involves a 24hour counselling service of highly qualified, registered psychologists and counsellors across Australia, for GMA members and their immediate family to access. The service is highly confidential and there is no disclosure of any individual information to GMA relating to your sessions. The MAP includes short term counselling of up to 3 hours counselling per member per year, and can assistance for a range of issues including:

• Domestic violence • Mental Illness • And any other issues you may be faced with in your work or personal life The MAP is being supported by the Qantas Golf Club, who recognised the need for GMA members to have the opportunity to access immediate help should issues within a members personal or professional life become difficult.

• Depression and Anxiety • Relationship and marriage difficulties

Qantas Golf Club’s James Cooper said, “Qantas Golf Club is delighted to support such a fantastic initiative by the GMA in support of their members and having been involved in organisations before that provide these types of services,

• Family and parenting issues • Managing grief or loss • Illness adjustment and Management





we truly appreciate how important they can be.” GMA will look to work with state bodies over the coming months to provide some more information relating to the program at state members meetings, however the program can be accessed immediately by GMA members via the details below.

CONTACT DETAILS Access confidential counselling by calling Acacia Connection 24 hours a day on 1300 364 273 or you can lodge an appointment request online at You can also receive counselling via SMS as part of the new Easy Talk service – simply text 0401 33 77 11 to receive support from a qualified psychologist. Additional resources, and connection with a psychologist, are available through the members’ section of the GMA website.


EO’S REPORT – CMAA CONFERENCE During the first week of March, I was lucky enough to travel to San Francisco for the ‘Club Managers Association of America’ National Conference. With GMA running its first BMI Program in October this year, touching base with our American counterparts to ensure alignment between our programs was an important outcome of the trip. Further to these discussions was the opportunity to experience firsthand the CMAA National Conference, as part of the planning process for the GMA National Conference to be held in Melbourne in October 2019. (I unfortunately hadn’t started in the role when the last GMA National Conference was held in Adelaide in 2017). The CMAA National Conference involves over 2,000 Club Managers from the USA, with the large majority of these coming from private golf clubs. In addition to this, there are regularly 200 international delegates involved, with this year seven golf club General Managers from Australia also in attendance. The conference itself is on a significant scale, as you could imagine, with plenary sessions and breakout sessions available on each of the five days, along with a large Golf Club Expo for corporate partners. If you are interested in seeing what the program was like, please click on the following link

CMAA National Conference highlights included: • Isaac Lidsky – a former TV star turned $150m business owner, who has overcome adversity including turning blind at the age of 15. His key message was ‘what you see is based on your perception’. If your perception of an issue is negative, this may create fear. He said ‘fear will fill the void of uncertainty, and fear will create inaction”. Creating a positive perception of issues will assist with creating action and opportunity. • Steven Freund – a former GM of ‘The Ritz-Carlton Lodge, Reynolds Plantation’ and now the General Manager of The Landings Club in Georgia. (This facility has six championship golf courses, 33 tennis courts, seven restaurants….you get the picture). Steven spoke about restructuring the culture of The Landings Club when he arrived. He achieved this by taking on the role of not only GM, but “Chief Cultural Officer”. His views included “the organisation will never be what the people are not” and “the gap between knowing and doing is significantly greater than the gap between ignorance and knowledge”. • Curt Cronin – a former Navy SEAL spoke about the strategy of leadership and maximising a teams’ effectiveness.

He spoke about ensuring your team you care about them as individuals with his key message around “people don’t care how much you know, until they know how much you care”. He also spoke about the energy within a group, and that “energy used in conflict is lost, but energy used in alignment is maintained”.

While the content of the conference no doubt provides many learnings, the ability to network with GMs from across the world and discuss challenges and opportunities is also a great highlight. For those interested, next year’s CMAA National Conference will be held in Nashville, TN, in the last week of February 2019. GMA will again look to incorporate the best of the CMAA conference into our next national conference, and will continue to support the outstanding work state GMA bodies undertake to support selected members attending the CMAA conference from time to time. WWW.GMA.ORG.AU




EOI NOW OPEN: FAM & PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT TOUR CGE Golf, through its partnership with GMA, is delighted to announce that ‘Expressions of Interests’ are now open for the GMA/CGE 2018 FAM & Professional Development Tour to China’s Hainan Island. With just 10 places available, GMA members keen to attend the FAM and PD Tour are asked to express their interest in attending by putting together a brief submission (no more than two pages) as to why you (and your Club) should be selected to attend the tour. Submissions should also include what you are looking to achieve by attending the tour, including the possible learning outcomes for you, and the benefits that could be applied to your club. Submissions need to be sent to GMA Executive Officer, Jim Cail, at, no later than Friday, 4th May 2018. (Should there be more ‘EOI’ than potential tour positions, a decision of successful applicants will be made by a committee made up of CGE and GMA board representatives).

if help is needed. (While accommodation, golf, transfer costs are all included in the experience, some further spending money around meals will be required). For further information in relation to the GMA/ CGE FAM & Professional Development Tour please contact Kevin or Steve at

2018 GMA/CGE – FAM & Professional Development Tour summary:

Participants will be required to arrange and pay for their own flights and organise their Visa for travel to China, with CGE Golf providing all necessary documentation and any application support ($109.50 for a singleentry trip). Participants will need to arrive in Haikou on the 2nd September and depart Haikou on the 8th September. CGE would be happy to advise flight options and introduce participants to CGE’s Flight Centre agent 8




• The 2018 FAM & PD Tour is scheduled from 2nd to 8th September 2018. • The trip takes GMA members to two great venues – Mission Hills Haikou, the world’s largest golf resort and Sheraton/ Dunes Shenzhou Peninsula, site of some spectacular golf. • While there are plenty of opportunities for golf to be played, specific professional development components of the trip include;

NEWS › Resort management › The review of food and beverage activities › A behind the scenes look at Golf operations › Understanding organisational aspects of such tours › Developing ideas for your own member tours, which clearly assist in member retention. › Experience firsthand the longterm camaraderie and networking opportunities that are developed as a result of group tours You will be introduced to senior hotel and golf managers, inspect facilities and meet management of other hospitality providers to give you a broad experience. If you would like to review the testimonials of those managers who enjoyed the 2017 PD tour, simply request a copy via email to

Previous attendee – Kevin, the China FAM trip organised by you and the team at CGE Golf was outstanding, the attention to detail in coordinating the trip and all the extra activities we undertook was fantastic. The welcome we received and the way we were looked after by the staff at both Mission Hills and the Sheraton Shenzhou was something special. I would definitely recommend a visit to both resorts and the way that CGE Golf coordinated everything for us meant that every little detail of our trip went smoothly. Once again thank you for your efforts. Mark Tan General Manager, Mt Osmond Golf Club Inc.

THE GENESIS GOLF LINK CUP - GMA MEMBERS LEADERBOARD IS ON AGAIN How we’ll help you qualify for the Genesis Golf Link Cup - GMA Members Leaderboard and the National Final A range of marketing initiatives supported by the Genesis Golf Link Cup offer GMA members a variety of ways to increase the number of their members registered for the event, ensuring their chance of making the National Final.

Club Leaderboards Each club has a leaderboard within the Genesis Golf Link Cup. A link to this leaderboard will be provided to all club GM’s for their internal promotional use. It can be sent to their club members or highlighted on their websites.

Posters, Countercards Each year the Genesis Golf Link Cup sends a series of posters and countercards to clubs to promote the event. These can be placed on noticeboards near comp registration or the locker-room and in the proshop. More are available on request.

Registration and Engagement Emails The Genesis Golf Link Cup will send personalised content to each club to allow them to resend this from their own email systems, congratulating well-performing players and with a link to register. These will be updated monthly.

Teams Event this year For the first time this year, the Genesis Golf Link Cup offers 4-ball teams an opportunity to play in the National Final, for an added route to this experience. Each series one





Australia’s biggest competition for club golfers rewards the game’s most important administrators with the Genesis Golf Link Cup - GMA Members Leaderboard. This is your chance to be part of a once in a lifetime weekend, vying for the title of Genesis Golf Link Cup - GMA Members champion at one of Australia’s best courses before enjoying a bucket list day at the Australian Open in the Genesis Marquee. Luxury car maker Genesis

and tournament organiser MPower Golf are always looking to grow the already hugely popular Genesis Golf Link Cup and they know one of the best ways to do that is through the club managers at the nation’s golf clubs. Not only are GMA members at the forefront of the industry, many are also avid golfers themselves and so the GMA Members Leaderboard was born. In 2017, the Genesis Golf Link Cup was delighted to host Andrew Davis (now Captain of The National Golf Club)

and Chris Anderson, General Manager of Mansfield Golf Club at the luxury VIP Genesis experience and at NSW Golf Club to play off for the GMA title. Chris Anderson won the day with a solid 34 pts at the always challenging venue. Chris said: “The organisation of the weekend was faultless, and the experiences were truly amazing. From the golf at NSW GC to the accommodation at the InterContinental Sydney

team will qualify with the two teams playing off at the Final. Entry fee per team is only $120 per series. Interestingly the team scores are aggregated again from the golf played across the Genesis Golf Link Cup program, meaning team members need not play at the same time or even location. See https://www.

over a quarter of each club’s membership is participating. The nature of the event is that the players that do best are the most improved and most consistent players over the period of a series; could clubs have a presentation to the winning players at the end of each series?

Personalised Social Media banners

Would you like to host a corporate day in conjunction with the Genesis Golf Link Cup? As an addition to the event this year MPower Golf is looking to provide premium golf experiences to Genesis Golf Link Cup players looking for an Open Day. We’ll provide the event structure, supporting materials and run registrations through, and your club gains a busy corporate day. (Note to avoid confusion, the Genesis Golf Link Cup runs across all golf played by members, not just those at organised events such as these Open Days). Contact Nick Thornton GM at MPower Golf if interested.

The Genesis Golf Link Cup produces personalised weekly winners’ images for use on social media, websites and within e-newsletters. These are emailed to GM’s.

Club winners - what could you do? Given this is a national event run over two 15-week series each year with no additional work required by the club, how could the club take advantage of an opportunity to connect with its members? At present on average

Genesis Golf Link Cup Open Days




Double Bay, all of the finalists (myself included) thoroughly enjoyed their time and appreciated the effort put in to make the weekend a success.” Andrew continued “A big thank you for taking care of me so well on the weekend, I can’t tell you how much fun I had.” And the Genesis Golf Link Cup greatly enjoyed hosting them along with the other finalists. The Genesis Golf Link Cup is played over two series each year with eight golfers from each series winning their way to the National Final. And you can add two GMA members to that list, one from each series. To qualify for the National Final GMA members need to do two things: sign up a minimum of 50 new registered players to the Genesis Golf Link Cup over the course of the series then amass the most Genesis Golf Link Cup points in the GMA Leaderboard. With MPower Golf a sponsor and supporter of the GMA all GMA Members are already automatically registered in the event, which means that, just

like the club members they represent, all their golf scores are automatically counted in the competition without requiring any input from the golfer. You simply play and the Genesis Golf Link Cup does the rest. The aim of the Genesis Golf Link Cup is to encourage more golfers to play more golf more often at the golf clubs that are the lifeblood of the industry. Convincing golfers to sign up for the Genesis Golf Link Cup couldn’t be easier. Once entered, the player doesn’t need to do anything but play their regular competition golf and the unique Genesis Golf Link Cup scoring algorithm does the rest. But even better, all registered players who play six rounds of golf in a series are also automatically in the draw to win a luxury Genesis vehicle in that series. Genesis Golf Link Cup scores are calculated using a unique algorithm which plots the golfer’s performance against the field that day.

To be eligible for the National Final simply play a minimum of six rounds with the best five and one worst counting towards your score. The highest score among the GMA Members who added at least 50 new registrations qualifies in each series. The National Final includes: expenses-paid trip to Sydney from nearest capital city; accommodation, in Sydney; golf at the National Final at a prestigious Sydney course; presentation dinner and Genesis VIP experience at the Australian Open. To see how many members at your club are already onboard head to: https://www. club-leaderboard and search for your club. And to see who’s leading the golf click here: https://www. leaderboard/?listid=725





EXCLUSIVE ISEEKGOLF OFFER TO GMA MEMBERS iSeekGolf (ISG) is Australia’s largest tee times website and the FIRST 10 CLUBS that come on board as new ISG venues will receive an attractive package of additional content FREE OF CHARGE. We would like to invite your club to consider the benefit of listing tee times for sale on which has close to 70,000 email subscribers and, for the month of March, average close to 12,500 page views per day. In addition to tee time and voucher sales, is also a respected source of golf news both internationally and locally. ISG’s digital content leader, Henry Peters, produces local video content and new ISG venues will have access to Henry’s video production services for a full day of filming.

New ISG venues will receive:


1-minute Signature Holes video on a hole of the club’s choosing

(Example: https://iseekgolf. com/news/signature-holes18th-at-lakelands-qld) - Published in auto video player on ISG homepage

for 4 days and on ISG Facebook page (45,000+ likes), Twitter (1,480 followers) and Instagram (3400+ followers) - Within 14 days of publication, Signature Holes videos (on ISG homepage alone) average close to 18,500 video impressions & 7,500 video views



90-second Club feature video

(Example: https://iseekgolf. com/news/iseekgolffeature-club-magentashores-nsw) - Published in an auto video player on ISG homepage for 4 days and ISG social media


iSeekGolf-produced instruction video articles average close to 1,500 page views as articles

6-8 one-minute instructional video tips with your local pro

(Example: https://iseekgolf. com/news/stevenslappendel-chippingdistance-control)

5 6

A collection of 1-2 dozen course photos (if desired) to be published on the club’s ISG club profile page & iSeekGolf’s Facebook (45,000+ likes), Instagram (3400+ followers) and Twitter (1,480 followers) accounts Your club’s Twitter feed embedded within its iSeekGolf club profile page An analysis of your club’s tee times sales & yield

Once published on iSeekGolf, all content will be made available to your club as original files for its own use.

- Published on ISG as video articles and ISG social media - Within 14 days of publication, WWW.GMA.ORG.AU





A brilliant score of 41 points in challenging hot, humid conditions on the East Course at Grange Golf Club secured The Vines’ General Manager, Matt Chesterman’s, a hat trick in the GMA SA NSW Salver.

The Metro West region has won the Opening Weekend Event for 2018 played at the Elanora Country Club.

Glenelg Golf Club’s Ben Kavenagh secured second place with 35 points with Mt Osmond’s Mark Tan winning a 3-way countback on 33 points to take out third place. We have a feeling the match committee will be reviewing the conditions of entry as, obviously, home course advantage is greatly assisting in Matt’s continual success in this much coveted event…….. A great day of golf, camaraderie and networking was enjoyed by all and we greatly appreciate the support of Grange Golf Club for allowing us to play the event on their East Course.

The three Metro zones were separated by only one point with the best three scores from Metro West returned by Massey Park’s Tony Rosillo (30), Cumberland’s Andrew Laplain (30) and Muirfield’s Cameron Harvey (33) for a total of 93 points. They won on a count back from Metro South made up of The Coast’s Kieran Semple (30) and Nora Nagy (31) and Cronulla’s Derryn Weigand (32). Metro North’s side of Ben Russell (Long Reef – 32), Andy Hugill (Mona Vale – 31) and Anthony Dignan (Long Reef – 29) were one point back. The best member single score for the day was Ben Russell (32) with runner-up Andy Hugill (31) while Best Guest score was Ross Fleming (Mona Vale – 36) followed by Bronson Garlick (Garlos Pies – 34). Nearest the pins were won by Cameron Adam (MPower Golf) and Noel Robertson (Roseville GC).

VICTORIA: COMMITTEE DAY 2018 – SPRING VALLEY GOLF CLUB Spring Valley Golf Club hosted the 2018 GMV Committee Golf Day and all attending were wonderfully looked after by all the staff and 14




STATE NEWS treated to an excellent golf course which was presented beautifully. Thank you to Fiza Errington (General Manager) and all the staff, and the committee for hosting this event.

The winners: 1st - David Stein, John Burggraff, Alex Lawson, Paul Findlay – Cheltenham Golf Club – 98 points 2nd - Tim Hanton, Stephen Nichols, Sonny Trinder, Neil Aubert – Settlers Run – 97 points

the rain was not going to get in their way. So, without any further delay, they all headed out onto The Pines knowing full well that the afternoon was going to be a wet one. That said the golf course was presented beautifully as the teams battled it out for the EC Coker Shield. The final results saw the Ballina team of Mark Whiting (CEO), Jennifer Ellenbroek, Geoff Barnes and Paul Wilson take out the day’s major event with 76 points. The winning team from Ballina receive the EC Coker Shield from Ted Coker.

3rd - Lindsay Bell, Chris Kelly, John Reggars, Des Heberman – Heidelberg Golf Club – 95 points

QUEENSLAND: GMAQ EXECUTIVE DAY SURVIVES THE RAIN AT SANCTUARY COVE The 2018 GMAQ Executive Day was held at the fantastic facility of Sanctuary Cove – The Pines on Tuesday 6 March and although the weather made life a little uncomfortable for all concerned on the day, it didn’t dampen the spirits of the 76 players that turned up to play. Facing rain in the morning, after many days of rain preceding the event, the course was understandably wet underfoot but the forecast of rain for the rest of the day had the event in doubt for many. Rather than make an executive decision on how to proceed, the GMAQ Captain elected to let democracy take its course and asked the golfers present what they would like to do. The majority had come to play golf and

Taking out the daily Four-Ball event was new member Brett Lawton and sponsor Jamie Gianneas with 46 points. The GMAQ would like to thank the Sanctuary Cove Team led by Executive General Manager – Paul Sanders and Superintendent Paul McLean and their teams for the wonderful event and the chance to play on one of Australia’s finest facilities.





NEW GUIDE HIGHLIGHTS CLUBS’ DUTY TO BE INCLUSIVE Golf Victoria and Golf Australia welcome the release of Equal Opportunity in Golf, a practical guide to preventing unlawful discrimination and harassment in Australia’s golf clubs. The guide, which was developed with the Victorian Equal Opportunity Commission, reminds clubs they have a positive duty not to discriminate against women and minority groups. Equal opportunity in golf is a key part of the sport’s efforts to address the underrepresentation of women in golf. Women make up 21% of all golf club members nationally and 23% in Victoria, which is significantly out of step with other sports and with contemporary Australian society. The guide, which also comes in a handy ‘quick guide’ version, can help clubs understand their obligations under the Equal Opportunity Act 2010. It details their ‘positive duty’ to provide an environment free from discrimination, sexual harassment and victimisation, and to take ‘reasonable



measures’ to eliminate these practices in their clubs and in membership policies. Golf Victoria CEO Simon Brookhouse says the guide will help clubs to encourage people from all walks of life to participate in golf. “Victorian golf clubs are known for their friendly environments and are often seen as the backbone of communities, especially in regional Victoria,” says Brookhouse. “Although golfers like to think that their sport is fair and open to all, there have been examples of individuals or groups that have been excluded or prevented from participating equally.” Brookhouse says discrimination can have adverse effects on health, confidence and performance and may result in people leaving the sport. “Clubs that allow such behaviour risk losing members and volunteers, often resulting in a reduced income,” he says. “They also face the prospect I


of legal liability and financial costs.” “I encourage clubs to work with Golf Victoria to help grow the game and to ensure it continues to be welcoming and inclusive to all members of our diverse community.” Victorian Equal Opportunity and Human Rights Commissioner Kristen Hilton congratulated Golf Victoria and Golf Australia for their work on the guide. “Golf clubs provide a great place for the community to meet and socialise,” Ms Hilton said. “They also have a legal obligation under the Equal Opportunity Act 2010 to provide equal opportunity for people to participate, regardless of their gender. “Clubs play a key role in setting standards of behaviour.

INDUSTRY NEWS They must act as role models by ensuring that that club memberships are provided without discrimination,” she said. Golf Australia CEO Stephen Pitt thanked the Commission and Golf Victoria for their work in producing such an important publication. “We encourage all clubs to carefully review the guide and consider if their current practices are compliant,” Pitt said. “The feedback we have had already from clubs is that it

will add significantly to the golf industry’s understanding of its legal obligations regarding equal opportunity.” Chief Executive of the R&A Martin Slumbers commended Golf Victoria and Golf Australia for taking the initiative to provide such useful guidance on discrimination and equal opportunities legislation to their member clubs. “Golf – like all sports – has a duty to ensure that those joining clubs are treated equally and do not suffer discrimination on grounds including gender, race, religion

or nationality,” he said. “It is important for clubs to understand their responsibilities under equal opportunities legislation and ensure their policies and procedures are fully compliant.” Golf clubs and members can download the report here, and are invited to visit the Commission’s website or call 1300 292 153 for free information and tools to prevent unlawful discrimination.

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FINAL RULES CHANGES FOR 2019 CONFIRMED The R&A and the USGA have unveiled the new Rules of Golf, to be implemented on 1 January 2019.

process for golfers to establish his/ her relief area. (Key change: the proposed Rules released in 2017 suggested a 20-inch or 80-inch standard measurement).

The R&A and the USGA finalised golf’s new Rules last month after an extensive review that included a request for feedback from the global golf community on the proposed changes. Golfers can now access the official 2019 Rules of Golf by visiting or

• Removing the penalty for a double hit: The penalty stroke for accidentally striking the ball more than once in the course of a stroke has been removed. Golfers will simply count the one stroke they made to strike the ball. (Key change: the proposed Rules released in 2017 included the existing one-stroke penalty).

The process to modernise the Rules began in 2012 and was initiated to ensure that the Rules are easier to understand and apply for all golfers and to make the game more attractive and accessible for newcomers.

• Balls Lost or Out of Bounds: Alternative to Stroke and Distance: A new Local Rule will now be available in January 2019, permitting committees to allow golfers the option to drop the ball in the vicinity of where the ball is lost or out of bounds (including the nearest fairway area), under a two-stroke penalty. It addresses concerns raised at the club level about the negative impact on pace of play when a player is required to go back under stroke and distance. The Local Rule is not intended for higher

While the majority of proposed Rules remain intact in the final version, several important changes to the initial proposals and further clarification of many Rules were incorporated. The most significant adjustments made following review of the feedback received from golfers around the world include: • Dropping procedure: When taking relief (from an abnormal course condition or penalty area, for example), golfers will now drop from knee height. This will ensure consistency and simplicity in the dropping process while also preserving the randomness of the drop. (Key change: the proposed Rules released in 2017 suggested dropping from any height).


David Rickman, Executive Director – Governance at The R&A, said, “We are pleased to be introducing the new Rules of Golf after a collaborative and wide-ranging review process which has embraced the views of golfers, rules experts and administrators worldwide. We believe that the new Rules are more in tune with what golfers would like and are easier to understand and apply for everyone who enjoys playing this great game.” “We’re thankful for the golfers, administrators and everyone in the game who took the time to provide us with great insight and thoughtful feedback,” said USGA Senior Director of Rules & Amateur Status, Thomas Pagel. “We couldn’t be more excited to introduce the new Rules ahead of their education and implementation.” Major proposals introduced in 2017 that have been incorporated into the modernised Rules include: • Elimination or reduction of “ball moved” penalties: There will be no penalty for accidentally moving a ball on the putting green or in searching for a ball; and a player is not responsible for causing a ball to move unless it is “virtually certain” that he or she did so.

• Measuring in taking relief: The golfer’s relief area will be measured by using the longest club in his/ her bag (other than a putter) to measure one club-length or two club-lengths, depending on the situation, providing a consistent


levels of play, such as professional or elite level competitions. (Key change: this is a new addition to support pace of play)

• Relaxed putting green rules: There will be no penalty if a ball I


INDUSTRY NEWS illustrations. It is intended to be a more thorough version of the revised Rules.

played from the putting green hits an unattended flagstick in the hole; players may putt without having the flagstick attended or removed. Players may repair spike marks and other damage made by shoes, animal damage and other damage on the putting green and there is no penalty for merely touching the line of putt. • Relaxed rules for “penalty areas” (currently called “water hazards”): Red and yellow-marked penalty areas may cover areas of desert, jungle, lava rock, etc., in addition to areas of water; expanded use of red penalty areas where lateral relief is allowed; and there will be no penalty for moving loose impediments or touching the ground or water in a penalty area. • Relaxed bunker rules: There will be no penalty for moving loose impediments in a bunker or for generally touching the sand with a hand or club. A limited set of restrictions (such as not grounding the club right next to the ball) is kept to preserve the challenge of playing from the sand; however, an extra relief option is added for an unplayable ball in a bunker, allowing the ball to be played from outside the bunker with a twostroke penalty. • Relying on player integrity: A player’s “reasonable judgment” when estimating or measuring a spot, point, line, area or distance will be upheld, even if video evidence later shows it to be wrong; and elimination of announcement procedures when

lifting a ball to identify it or to see if it is damaged. • Pace-of-play support: Reduced time for searching for a lost ball (from five minutes to three); affirmative encouragement of “ready golf” in stroke play; recommending that players take no more than 40 seconds to play a stroke and other changes intended to help with pace of play. Presented in digital, text-based form today, the new Rules will also now be translated into more than 30 languages and readied for final delivery via print and digital formats, including searchable Rules of Golf official apps developed by The R&A and the USGA. Three important publications, to be distributed in September, will help players as well as officials and provide interpretation and guidance in how the Rules are applied: • The Player’s Edition of the Rules of Golf: An abridged, user-friendly set of the Rules with shorter sentences, commonly used phrases, and diagrams. Written in the “second person,” The Player’s Edition is intended to be the primary publication for golfers.

• The Official Guide to the Rules of Golf: This “guidebook” replaces the Decisions book and will contain information to best support committees and officials. It includes interpretations on the Rules, committee procedures (available local rules and information on establishing the terms of the competition), and the Modified Rules of Golf for Players with Disabilities. It is a comprehensive resource document intended as a supplementary publication. More than 30 “how-to apply” videos and a summary of the principal changes are now available at usga. org/rules. Additional education tools will be released in September. Players are reminded that the current edition of the Rules of Golf (2016) must be applied when playing, posting scores or competing for the remainder of 2018. The Rules of Amateur Status and the Rules of Equipment Standards were not part of this review process. As an extension of their support of the Rules of Golf worldwide, Rolex has made a commitment to support The R&A and the USGA’s efforts to modernise golf’s Rules. The Swiss watchmaker’s contribution to excellence in golf is based on a rich heritage stretching back more than 50 years, forged through pivotal partnerships at every level of the game, from the sport’s leading professional and amateur competitions and organisations, to players at the pinnacle of their sport worldwide.

• The Rules of Golf: The full edition of the Rules will be written in the third person and include WWW.GMA.ORG.AU




GMA PARTNER, GOLF INDUSTRY CENTRAL, WINS QLD GOLF SUPPLIER OF THE YEAR AWARD The annual QLD Golf Industry Awards night was held on Tuesday, 20 March at the Star Casino on the Gold Coast, with a record of 460 guests in attendance. The gala night, which surpassed last year’s record of 453 attendees, was held in order to recognise the outstanding achievements of individuals, golf clubs and companies from across the industry over the past year.

Another prestigious award, the GMAQ Golf Club of the Year Award, was given to the City Golf Club, who has played host to the QLD PGA Championship for the last decade. It was the third time the club took home the award.

A total of 30 awards were presented during the night’s three-course dinner, with Golf Industry Central (GIC) taking home the accolade of Golf Supplier of The Year. Golf Industry Central Managing Director and PGA Member Mike Orloff said “What an honour to be bestowed this award especially when we were up against some big brands. Congrats to the other nominees and thank you to the award review panel,” “A special thanks to Paul Orloff, Andrew Howes and now Mathilda Andersson for the support given to help grow our little company over the past 10 years.”



“2017 has been another great year for us at the City Golf Club,” said Golf Club President Ed Britnell. “Award’s like this don’t come easily and I would like to thank my fellow board members as well as the management and staff, for all the tireless work and effort they put in to make our club so great.” Other recipients of the GMAQ Awards include, Links Hope Island’s Ashlee Kachel who took I


out the Staff Member of the Year Award, McLeod Country Clubs Carolyn McIlvenny who won the Board Member of the Year Award while Parkwood Village’s Luke Altschwager claimed the title of GMAQ Manager of the Year. Of the PGA Awards presented, Sanctuary Cove General Manager, Paul Sanders winning the PGA Management Professional of the Year, Emerald Golf Club Head Professional Matthew Victorsen taking out the PGA Game Development Professional of the Year, Adam Norlander from Headland Golf Club was presented with the coveted PGA Club Professional of the Year Award and Grant Field claimed the PGA Coach of the Year Award. Queensland’s superintendents were recognised by the GCSAQ, with Parkwood Village’s Col Thorsborne taking out the Superintendent’s Achievement Award for completing work on the club’s irrigation system of all 18 holes, while successfully restructure four holes. The evening also celebrated the graduation of 15 PGA Trainees graduates to Full Vocational PGA Members.


CHAMPIONING CHANGE International Women’s Day (IWD) 2018 calls for us all to #PressforProgress towards gender parity and arrives at a unique moment in time.

whilst the MCC Sport group boasts 7,000+ employees, more than 9 million participants and a million members across its constituent organisations.

There is huge momentum behind women’s sport, which is beginning to change the landscape significantly and, hopefully, irrevocably for the better.

The group’s effectiveness is demonstrated by its recent achievements, which include:

Sport connects with Australians in a way no other industry can. For me this brings with it an extra responsibility – to lead, influence and demonstrate the way forward. The Male Champions of Change (MCC) Sport group recognises this opportunity and is making a significant impact. Golf Australia has a seat at this table as one of 18 members representing the key sports in terms of economic contribution, participation and influence in the Australian sporting landscape. Each CEO has a deep personal commitment to gender equality,

• A practical guide to workforce flexibility tailored for sporting organisations • More gender-balanced, diverse and inclusive ‘public faces’ for sports organisations • The MCC women in sport sponsorship program, through which high potential women leaders are matched with and sponsored by senior executives • A panel pledge to only participate on panels if senior women from the sector are included. Our 2018 priorities include developing more respectful and inclusive sporting cultures, advancing more women into

leadership positions and developing pathways to pay equity for elite women athletes. I’m proud to be part of this group and personally committed to changing our sport for the better, as I hope you’ve seen through the recent Vision 2025 announcement. However, as Mark Hayes has so beautifully highlighted in his opinion piece this week, we can only win together. So, I’d like to ask you to be a champion of change in your organisation, golf club or facility. As the R&A recently highlighted, the health of our sport depends on it. Stephen Pitt CEO – Golf Australia

THE MALE CHAMPIONS OF CHANGE SPORT • Mark Anderson – CEO, Collingwood Football Club • Raelene Castle (Special Advisor) – CEO, Rugby Australia • Brian Cook – CEO, Geelong Football Club • Matt Finnis – CEO, St Kilda Football Club • Marne Fechner (Special Advisor) – CEO, Netball Australia • Brendon Gale – CEO, Richmond Football Club • David Gallop – CEO, Football Federation Australia

• Todd Greenberg – CEO, National Rugby League • Cain Liddle – CEO, Carlton Football Club • Anthony Moore – CEO, Basketball Australia • Kate Palmer (Special Advisor) – CEO, Australian Sports Commission • Stephen Pitt – CEO, Golf Australia • Ian Robson – CEO, Rowing Australia • James Sutherland – CEO, Cricket Australia • Giles Thompson – CEO, Racing Victoria • Craig Tiley – CEO, Tennis Australia • TBC – CEO, Swimming Australia WWW.GMA.ORG.AU




A FOCUS ON POLICY TO STOP THE MICROMANAGING What does policy have to do with micromanaging? The answer lies in the way that board policy supports the principles of good governance and the board’s delegation to the GM. We’ve all heard stories of a micromanaging board member and the impact this can have on staff and operations. Micromanaging can become an even bigger problem when its coming from the chairman. A GM revealed recently that he receives 10-15 emails from the club’s chairman every day. The GM is asked for reports and updates, review of work, copies of all correspondence and even explanations as to how he’s spending his time. Upon returning from the GMA National Conference in Adelaide he was immediately questioned as to how he could justify the cost and the time away from the club.

authority exists through the board and that individual board members do not have that authority. The board speaks with one voice and it speaks through policy. The board makes the rules and policies with a focus on strategy and the future whilst not overly concerning itself with the day to day management of the club. The chairman’s role is in effect that of chief governance officer, seeing to it that the board acts according to its own policies. Micromanaging is a direct result of failing to set clear policy and abide by it. Whilst most clubs have policies, often many are not in the practice of living the policies nor developing new polices. Governance Fundamentals describes five types of policies: 1) Ends policies, 2) By-laws,

To find out more about these policies and how they help to improve club performance with greater clarity over roles, responsibilities and accountabilities, register for the Governance Fundamentals e-learning course. It’s ideal for GM’s, senior managers, board members and prospective board members and it will shine a spotlight on micromanaging. To register go to: and click the long “E-learning modules” bar.

The Governance Fundamentals e-learning course assists with counteracting this behaviour.

3) GM boundary policies,

It’s only $49.50 per registrant.

4) Governance process policies, and

The course highlights that all

5) Board-GM linkage policies.

Paul Vardy Club’s & Facilities Support Manager

Lots of learnings on LinkedIn. If you’re a club GM, or senior member of the club staff thirsty for knowledge, reading GMA’s E-Magazine for ideas on what’s happening in club management is a must. LinkedIn is yet another way to add to your learnings. There is a worldwide community of club managers and industry suppliers sharing information on LinkedIn.






GOLF MONTH 2018 IS YOUR CHANCE TO SHINE! Golf Month is back this October, so make sure you are one of hundreds of clubs and facilities around the country who will offer fun, social, welcoming experiences to attract new people to the game and generate interest in club membership.

have forgotten your login or password, we’ll be sending a reminder email shortly.

New to Golf Month?

Golf Month is Australia’s national campaign to drive golf participation and encourage take-up of golf club memberships, and it’s simple and easy to be a part of.

If you haven’t participated in Golf Month before the first step to being involved is registering as a Golf Month venue. Once you’ve registered you’ll be issued with a login and password which will allow you to access the Golf Month clubs and facilities portal and upload your activities.

Already involved with Golf Month?

Why be a part of Golf Month 2018?

If you’ve participated in Golf Month in the past, you’ll be automatically registered for Golf Month 2018 using your existing login and password. All you need to do now is plan your Golf Month activity and upload it to the website using the clubs and facilities portal. Don’t worry if you

Golf Month is a nationwide celebration of golf and a great opportunity for us all to work together to grow the game. As a registered Golf Month facility, you’ll get access to marketing assets as they become available – such as digital content and

advertisements, customisable posters, and a media release template – to complement your own local promotions. We're busy at work developing the Golf Month 2018 marketing campaign which will again encourage club members and passionate golfers to share their love of the game with friends, family and colleagues. We’re looking forward to sharing this with you, and are looking to do so much earlier this year! If you’re after more information about how Golf Month will be promoted or what kind of activities to run, take a look at the Golf Month fact sheet. And if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us at





MYGOLF REACHES 10,000 FUTURE STARS “We’re delighted with the growth of the MyGolf program nationwide,” said Gavin Kirkman, CEO of the PGA of Australia.

MyGolf, Australia’s national introductory junior golf program, reached a significant milestone in February as it ticked over 10,000 participants in a year for the first time. The number of kids around Australia taking part in MyGolf programs has nearly doubled since this time last year, demonstrating that the joint venture between the PGA of Australia and Golf Australia is providing an enormous boost for golf participation around the country. Queensland and Victoria are leading the way, with more than 5500 juniors taking the first steps to playing golf, while other states have also exceeded their projected participation goals for the financial year, with more than three months remaining to add to the record. 24


“I am particularly pleased to see the number of facilities and PGA professionals actively promoting the initiative.” Golf Australia CEO Stephen Pitt echoed these sentiments. “This is a great milestone for junior golf in Australia, but we recognise the job is not over,” said Pitt. “We have a really good base to work from and I’m confident we can keep growing the MyGolf program so that it has a lasting impact on our game. Obviously having a unified approach with buy-in from all sectors of the industry is absolutely critical.” MyGolfers have taken centre stage in Australia’s biggest tournaments over the recent summer of golf, hitting the first tee shots of the 2017 I


Emirates Australian Open, the 2018 ISPS HANDA World Super 6 Perth and the 2018 ISPS HANDA Women’s Australian Open. They’ve also been able to rub shoulders and learn from some of the best golfers in the world over the summer at clinics with MyGolf ambassadors Jason Day and Minjee Lee, as well as Cameron Smith, Lee Westwood, Andrew ‘Beef’ Johnston, Aditi Ashok and Jonas Blixt. The MyGolf Caddie Kids initiative continues to create fans for life, too, with MyGolfers meeting their heroes – Adam Scott, Marc Leishman and Sergio Garcia to name just a few – during proams at the country’s marquee tournaments. MyGolf is a 10-week introductory program designed for 5 to 12-yearolds and is the major driver of junior golf participation in Australia. Find a program near you at


GA APPOINTS KURDAS TO KEY FEMALE ROLE Golf Australia has completed a coup with the appointment of Chyloe Kurdas to the position of national female participation manager. Kurdas, who began the new role on Monday 9 April, has had a highprofile role in helping develop the thriving AFLW competition. Bringing with her more than 20 years’ experience in leading significant cultural change and building gender equality, Kurdas is excited by her new challenge. “It’s a fascinating time for women and girls in sport and there’s a real appetite for change and development, so I think it’s really important for golf not to get left behind and get on the front foot,” Kurdas said. “I feel like I have unique `IP’ in my head about growing opportunities for girls and women in sport and that it would be a waste not to use it. “The role with Golf Australia I’m sure will make me feel challenged and that’s what I look forward to.” Kurdas’ appointment is a key component of GA’s Vision 2025: The future of women and girls in golf, launched during the recent ISPS Handa Women’s Australian Open. At 42 and with a keen interest in golf but not a club membership, Kurdas said the Vision 2025 documents “spoke to her”. “I love to play, but I can also see some of the aspects of the sport

that are holding it back in many women’s minds,” Kurdas said. “I can empathise with their thoughts and all golf facilities need to actively ask themselves how they make women feel included and engaged, because without that we’re up against it. “It’s a really important time with so many different sports and other aspects of life competing for women and girls now – golf has to be part of that movement. “We are uniquely placed in that there’s not just a high-performance aspect to golf, there’s also a strong leisure and recreation component and it’s a lifetime sport. “We just haven’t maximised golf’s potential yet – the ability to use the power and appeal the sport has to so many people.” Kurdas lectures at Melbourne Business School and Melbourne University and is known to many as an expert commentator and analyst on AFLW across several mediums. Her most recent sport-specific role was as AFL Victoria female football development manager where she was responsible for leading the growth of female participation that culminated in the establishment of the groundbreaking AFLW competition. She was also one of 17 women globally chosen to participate in a five-week mentorship with

the LPGA in Florida, provided professional development for LPGA game development staff and was involved with strategy development around the Navistar Classic LPGA tournament. GA golf development director Cameron Wade said Kurdas’ appointment capped an exhaustive three-month process. “It was extremely important to us to find the best possible person for such a vital role for the sport – and in Chyloe we are confident we’ve done that from among a list of very strong candidates,” Wade said. “Chyloe has the skills and experience to lead the implementation of the Vision 2025 whole of sport blueprint with a focus on cultural change. “Our collective goal is to transform the game of golf in Australia into one that is highly engaging and fully inclusive for women and girls across all levels and we are very appreciative of the R&A’s leadership through assisting with the development of Vision 2025 and also partly funding the role for a three year period." WWW.GMA.ORG.AU





Susie Mathews working at Kooyonga.

To celebrate International Women’s Day 2018, we sat down with Susie Mathews, Andrea McGann and Zahara Lemon to discuss how we attract more women to golf, ensure they have great experiences and keep them loving the game.

Andrea, also a fitness instructor with 20 clients who see her weekly, has had more than 200 women through her Swing Fit programs. She has just returned from the Hunter Valley, where she took 21 of her Swing Fit ‘graduates’ for three days of fun, including plenty of golf.

Susie is a PGA professional and all-abilities coach based at Kooyonga Golf Club in South Australia, Andrea is a community instructor and Swing Fit deliverer at multiple venues in Sydney’s eastern suburbs, while Tasmanian representative player Zahara, still in her teens, is a community instructor who delivers MyGolf and Swing Fit programs at Kingston Beach Golf Club.

For Andrea, these trips are a natural extension of the on-course days she regularly hosts the women who come through her program and highlight what golf has to offer.

What strikes you first about these three women is their passion for the game. More than that though, the enjoyment they get from sharing their love of golf is palpable. There’s also an understated, quiet pride in what they are achieving, so it’s nice to be able to sing their praises on such an important day.

From Day 1, they are part of what I call #TeamSwingFit. I hold their hands and give them encouragement. From there, the friendships flourish and they’re hooked. I think that’s the main reason word-of-mouth is the most common way people find my programs!”




“The golf journey can feel daunting to some, so the women in my programs are nurtured and encouraged from the moment they arrive,” explains McGann.

Andrea seeks to strike a balance between fun


GOLF AUSTRALIA NEWS and learning; she makes a point of helping her participants to feel comfortable on the golf course. Any cynicism that may have existed about the program from her host clubs has been blown away by the reality of Swing Fit participants buying clubs, clothes and equipment and becoming club members! With a full-time role at Kooyonga, Susie’s situation is a bit different to Andrea’s, but her focus is just the same – showing women and girls how much fun they can have learning and playing golf.

learn and have fun on the course!”

“I believe newcomers to the game must be made to feel comfortable in their surroundings,” says Mathews.

“Fun formats are fun for everyone, not just beginners. Let’s play more foursomes and ambrose,” says Lemon.

“My aim is always to have people laughing with friends and hitting some memorable shots.”

She finds perceptions of golf the most challenging though – something that’s been called out as a priority in ‘Vision 2025 – The future of women and girls in golf’.

Susie is clearly doing that. Her Wednesday afternoon MyGolf girls program and her ability to get mums into the game have had a great impact on female participation at Kooyonga and rank among her proudest achievements. She’s seen the game at the top level, having competed on the Japanese LPGA Tour and won as a professional, but still finds golf “a great way to relax and have fun” herself. Susie is a big advocate for something that’s often overlooked at clubs and facilities around Australia – making sure programs are run at the right times for the target audience. It really is the simple things sometimes! Chatting with Susie highlights another important factor, and something we see a lot in our research into golf – as a sport we are way too focused on competition. Susie would like us to use fewer clubs and focus on fun rather than scores. “One club golf is a great way for women to

Zahara, studying global logistics and maritime management at the University of Tasmania, concurs.

“The idea that it is a game for the older generations and only for men is rather ridiculous. Every day I try to do a little bit to help create a better reputation for golf in Tasmania,” says Lemon. It’s clear when you speak to Zahara that she believes changing golf to make it more accessible and enjoyable for women will help the game as a whole. “We need to show people that golf can be played in two hours. We need to keep pushing nine-hole golf, offer fun group learning with PGA professionals and work harder to create welcoming atmospheres at our clubs and facilities.” Wise words, young lady! For more information, write to with ideas or queries about how to help us grow the game. WWW.GMA.ORG.AU




INSIDE GOLF BUCKING THE TREND NOT LONG TO DEPARTURE! It’s no secret that the print magazine industry has gone through a rough patch of late. More and more newsstand and subscription titles have ceased publication in recent years, a result of the meteoric rise of online behemoths like Google and Facebook. But one magazine is bucking this trend, and kicking goals (or in this case, making birdies) across the country. Inside Golf Magazine, published by independent publisher Outdoor Sports Publishing, has seen significant growth in its print title, due to a unique distribution model combined with a healthy online presence. The magazine, which is distributed free to golfers via clubs, practice facilities and retailers, has maintained a steady print run of over 40,000 copies per month over the last year (the highest-circulating, CAB-Audited golf publication in Australia). In addition, their online presence has skyrocketed over the last 12 months, with (at present count) a massive 17,000 organically-grown Facebook followers 28



(and rising), and a healthy 28,500-strong community of email subscribers. According to Sam Arthur, Publisher of Inside Golf, the secret to the magazine’s success is simple. “The team at Inside Golf are extremely passionate about golf; we live, breathe and play the game, so we know what appeals to our readership,” says Arthur. “We strive to provide a high-quality, entertaining magazine that features something for all golfers to enjoy—from beginners all the way through to club professionals and industry leaders , while also keeping it as Aussie-centric as possible. Sure, the punters love that it’s free, but more importantly, we make sure it’s packed with solid, award-winning content that is worth reading every month.” Behind the scenes, Arthur and the team are equally passionate about affordability and efficiency.


ABOUT INSIDE GOLF As Australia’s Most-Read Golf Publication (named by Australian golfers) and Australia’s highest-circulating audited golf publication (CAB Audited every year), Inside Golf is the recognised “golf magazine of choice” by golfers, industry leaders and general managers across Australia. Inside Golf is an innovative, independent and trusted voice in Australian Golf. Inside Golf features in-depth coverage of Australian golf news, golf events, golf travel and holiday destinations, Australian and international golf course reviews, the hottest new golf gear, tips and great giveaways. Written by award-winning journalists, it also features interviews with Australia’s top professional golfers, the game’s rising stars, industry leaders and golf equipment manufacturers. The publication is also known for breaking new ground in the online/digital space, being the first golf publication in Australia to launch a full page-turning online/digital edition (2006); the first to launch a Facebook page (2009); the first to launch a fully-integrated online/offline advertising media platform (2009); and the first to make the foray into iPads and tablets (2011).

“We aim for efficiency in our processes, and to keep our costs as low as possible, without sacrificing quality,” he says. “This extends to our content acquisition--we rarely purchase overseas content, but instead choose to go with home-grown, Australian stories. Our production process utilises the latest online technologies, while our delivery, administration and all other parts of the business are carefully monitored to reduce inefficiency and waste. We also strive for clear and transparent communication within the team and with our clients. And we also make sure to mix a bit of fun in there as well.” While the magazine’s readership numbers are certainly strong, importantly, these readers and online followers are also proving to be extremely active, with one of the most energetic Facebook response rates of any page in the industry. As a result, campaigns and giveaways on the page are enjoying hundreds of thousands of shares and likes, while content/ stories on the Inside Golf website are also highly in demand, with over 1.2 million pageviews logged in the preceding 12-month period.

The magazine’s email community is also extremely active: Recent Inside Golf email campaigns have enjoyed a whopping 40% open rate, and a 18% click-through rate, around double the industry average of 22% and 4.7% respectively. Identifying gaps in the market (and capitalising on them) is also key for the team. Inside Golf has branched out into a highly-successful travel magazine (Inside Golf Travel), and expanded the Club News section of its monthly publication. It has also recently made a strong push into the golf industry/business segment, with an expanded IG Business section, as well as a Facebook page dedicated solely to the business of golf. A variety of print and online packages are available for all clubs around Australia starting from $220 plus GST per month over 12 months. Contact Sam Arthur on or 0410575303 More:





THE VALUE OF A PGA PROFESSIONAL TO GOLF CLUBS Developing and maintaining the relationship between a golfer and their club is vital to the success of both the individual facility and the overall golf industry, and PGA Professionals play an important role in cultivating this connection within the club. Ian James, CEO of Retail Tribe, who successfully presented on the topic of member and golfer engagement at the 2017 PGA Golf Expo describes PGA Professionals as the golf industry employees best suited to the role of “Rainmaker” for golf clubs – a person who brings new business to an operation through their skills and expertise. Ian also noted, when provided with the appropriate role and responsibilities, PGA Professionals can care for your current membership base, get more business from current members, reward devoted members with more value, recover lapsed members and find new members.

more coaching. In addition, there will be less need to discount memberships and goods and services, with the golfer seeing greater value in their membership and link to the club. An improved connection between the golfer and the golf club will also facilitate the evolution of the club into a true community hub, where a diverse range of individuals gather regularly for sport, recreation, socialisation and exercise. Conversely, a golfer who is not connected with their club through playing, coaching or engagement events is an at-risk member - at-risk of cancelling their membership and being lost to the sport of golf.

When you improve the relationship between a golfer and their club, golfers will play more golf, purchase more equipment, spend more on food and beverage and undertake

The 2016 Golf Australia Golf Club Participation Report outlined data that requires golf clubs to take immediate and appropriate action in the area of club membership. Since 1998, there has been a 27% reduction in the number of golfers holding a golf club membership, representing an annual loss of slightly more than 1.2%. Alarmingly, there has also been a 34% loss in female golf club members in the same period. When reviewed in isolation, golf clubs are doing a reasonable job of attracting





new members, with a 7.7% attraction rate for new members in 2016, but this attraction rate was offset by an attrition rate of 8.8% in the same period. However, the aforementioned figures obviously present golf clubs and the overall industry with an excellent and realistic opportunity; increase attraction rate by 1% and reduce attrition rate by 1% and the current membership decline can be immediately reversed. The next generation want to be inspired to play the sport, fully engaged by their club and converted to keen and enthusiastic golfers, thereby realising and recognising the value in the retention of club membership for an extended period. Through engagement with new golfers via engagement-oriented events, coaching programs, playing with golfers and community-based events, PGA Professionals are best positioned to promote the cycle of attraction, inspiration, engagement and retention of membership. A recent survey of multiple golf courses in the United States by the golf instructor network The Proponent Group

PGA NEWS in collaboration with Retail Tribe indicated that 100% of golfers who undertook a golf lesson in the previous year retained their membership the following year. Therefore, coaching programs can be positively utilised to facilitate membership retention, with regular coaching leading to a direct commitment to membership. The knowledge of this connection is valuable to golf clubs in the promotion and inclusion of coaching programs within their membership retention strategies. Importantly, Retail Tribe also discovered that during and after coaching, golfers increase the number of rounds they play by approximately 20%, therefore increasing their spend at the club (as much as 65% more on F&B and 80% more on retail). Accompanied play with golfers by PGA Professionals can also be utilised by golf clubs as an effective membership retention strategy. Via accompanied play, the PGA Professional can discuss coaching, membership, equipment and the golfer’s objectives, thereby gaining valuable information to utilise in retention. PGA Professionals can also provide inspiration for the golfer to improve their game, in addition to important on-course advice to make the sport more enjoyable. Engagement events at a golf club should also be the responsibility of the resident PGA Professional. Consider the implementation of skills test challenges, putting competitions, par-3 events or

other similar events to promote a connection between the club and the golfer. As discussed, the cultivation of this relationship using a range of methods will have a positive impact on membership retention. Do golf clubs currently have their PGA Professionals in roles that facilitate accompanied play and freedom to coach, while also encouraging their Club Professionals to interact with golfers on the first tee, putting green, golf course and driving range? This type of valuable interaction cannot occur from behind a Pro-Shop counter or back-office. It is vital for Golf Club General Managers to be aware of how many of their members are engaged regularly in coaching programs or make regular contact with their resident PGA Professional for playing or engagement events. Do managers and PGA Professionals discuss member engagement regularly? Are there engagement reports in place to identify “atrisk” golfers? Are there coaching program reports indicating the number of golfers engaged with game improvement programs? As outlined, PGA Professionals have the knowledge, skills,

expertise and experience to employ a variety of engagement activities to connect with their members and golfers including accompanied play, supervised practice, swing assessments, club-fitting assessments, group coaching, individual coaching, skills challenges, engagement events and junior clinics, and all should be considered for implementation by a club. Golf clubs should consider the value of getting PGA Professionals out from behind the Pro-Shop counter or administrative office to fully engage with their golfing community. Consider the redevelopment of position descriptions to facilitate this connection and review strategies that incentivise PGA Professionals for meeting objectives relating to member engagement, membership uptake and retention. Is it more valuable to have your PGA Professionals within the confines of the Pro-Shop for the majority of their week, or is it more beneficial for the club to have this valuable employee engaging with members and golfers where they actually play the sport – in events, on the course, and on the driving range, putting green and first tee? WWW.GMA.ORG.AU




CAREER EDUCATION A CLICK AWAY FOR MANAGERS WITH PGA IGI In the ever growing online world, education for the golf industry continues to develop and evolve in this space. The PGA International Golf Institute (PGA IGI) continues to be at the forefront of golf management education, delivering nationally recognised qualifications to golf industry professionals in Australia and around the world. “The benefits of online training and education are numerous and with enhanced accessibility, students can now access high-quality education programs for the golf industry from anywhere in the world with PGA IGI,” explained Christine Straw, PGA IGI Senior Manager. The PGA IGI is a Registered Training Organisation (RTO), delivering VET qualifications to students through on campus and online learning. It delivers the Advanced Club Management Program, which incorporates the nationally recognised qualification BSB61015 Advanced Diploma of Leadership and Management. 32


Students studying the BSB61015 Advanced Diploma of Leadership and Management focus on the skills set and knowledge of Club and General Managers. Areas the qualification focuses on include: • Planning (Strategic, Business, Marketing) • Financial management • Organisational change and leadership • Risk management • Compliance • Organisational development The program content of the qualification was chosen and designed in consultation with the GMA to provide managers with the information current to today’s club management industry. “We encourage those studying the Advanced Club Management Program to use their current club as their case study for assessments during their study,” stated Straw. “With the qualification content I


relating to the role of a club manager, our experience showcases that managers will gain the most benefit when working on projects in line with their work requirements.” The qualification is undertaken through part-time study. There are no classes to attend with your entire learning undertaken through e-learning, allowing you to study anytime, anywhere. GMA Members receive exclusive member tuition fees when studying the Advanced Club Management Program. Payment plan options and VET Student Loans program are available for students to access. For further information, visit the PGA IGI Website or contact the PGA IGI team at

EXPLORE THE POSSIBILITIES Golf Management Club and Facilities Management Website Design and Marketing Support and Training

PERFORMANCE, INNOVATION, SERVICE. With over 400 clients and an ongoing focus on the golf industry, MiClub is Australia’s most trusted provider of golf and club management solutions. 24/7 CUSTOMER SUPPORT SOLUTIONS BASED PRODUCTS CONTINUAL PRODUCT DEVELOPMENT WEB BASED USER INTERFACES


Chemicals help keep your turf in good playing condition, but they’re also a major expense. How can you trim those costs without giving up the results you want? The answer is Toro’s new GeoLink system, available on the Toro Multi Pro® 1750 and 5800 sprayers. This innovative GPS spraying solution is designed to maximise efficiency, deliver exceptional coverage, and minimise chemical costs by eliminating overspray.

Accuracy leads to efficiency, and that impacts your bottom line. The GeoLink system is available with an advanced Real Time Kinematic (RTK) correction configuration, which delivers precision to within a centimeter. This configuration also saves time, since operators only need to define the target area once, not every time they spray.

Applying chemicals to your course or ground is often a necessary part of your program to keep the turf looking and playing its best. The GeoLink GPS spraying system ensures you apply exactly what you need, where you need it, no worries about overspraying, underspraying or damaging sensitive turf, even if you don’t have your best spray tech available.

Another advantage is that GeoLink is based on turf applications, not agriculture or farming. It’s designed specifically for the way golf courses or sports grounds need to use it, with unique features like multiple inclusion zones and exclusion zones. This allows operators to select all greens or sports pitches and define them as one job. Then when that job is selected, GeoLink will tell the operator the total area and how much chemical to mix.

The GeoLink system is also equipped with individual nozzle control, so it can turn off single nozzles if it senses any portion of the area has already been treated on a previous pass.

In addition, GeoLink includes a convenient automated reporting feature. Just plug a flash drive into the USB port on the side of the monitor and you can download data such as coverage, how long it





took and how much chemical you used. You can also share information between sprayers if you have multiple GeoLink systems. And the system can be transferred (along with all application history) to a new sprayer when needed. Of course, even with these benefits, you need to look at whether a GPS spraying solution is worth the investment. In preliminary trials, test groups using the GeoLink system were able to slash their chemical usage by a double-digit percentage (actual results may vary). For courses and sports grounds with a significant chemical budget, the savings could pay for the system quickly. Geolink is backed by support from Toro’s National Service Centres and the Toro National Support Network (NSN).

ASSISTANT SUPER ST ANDREWS INTERNSHIP WINNERS Congratulations to the 3 Assistant Superintendents who won an “Assistant Super St Andrews Internship” at St Andrews Links in Scotland:

Stuart Campbell,

Maroochy River Golf Club

Liam Scott,

Keysborough Golf Club

David Hurst,

Cromer Golf Club All 3 will be travelling to one of the world’s most iconic golf courses, St Andrews Links in Scotland, to work at the Junior and Senior Open. They will also visit the Open Championship at Carnoustie Golf Links, get a chance to shadow the Course Managers and spend time with the Learning and Development Officer. assistant-super-st-andrews-internshipwinners


EMOTIONAL OWNERSHIP IN CLUBS Provided by Global Golf Advisors

Warren was delighted when his fellow club members selected him to serve on the board. He couldn’t wait to rollup his sleeves and jump straight into the big issues plaguing the club: stagnant membership growth, financial uncertainty and distrust of the board itself. Given his previous business success and background, Warren was certain that he could be a difference-maker who would put the club back in good standing with its members. Instead, Warren encountered uncooperative, unprofessional and disorganised fellow board members dedicated to the status quo. . . “Tradition” they called it.

WHAT COULD MAKE governing a club so much more difficult than leading a major corporation? “Emotional ownership makes governing clubs so challenging,” explains Fred Laughlin, a 40-year nonprofit governance expert at PriceWaterhouseCoopers and now an associate at Global Golf Advisors (GGA). “The intensity of emotional ownership escalates significantly as people think of their churches, clubs and homeowner associations.” Faith, social network and home ownership are overpowering emotional factors that can rob the normal good sense of good people, Laughlin teaches.

Most club leaders and managers fully understand the basics of effective club governance. Club member focus groups throughout the world generate the same assortment of member concerns with governance: transparency, communication, strategic focus and financial focus. Yet, many club boards struggle with each category. Board members can become misdirected because of the following contributors to emotional ownership dysfunction: their own financial investment, personal identification with the club’s mission, interaction with fellow board members, proximity to the club and the

HOW SHOULD CLUB LEADERS IMPROVE GOVERNANCE AT THEIR CLUBS? • Establish qualitative measures that serve as criteria for board evaluation. Club members want personal accountability, openness, dependability, trustworthiness and accountability from their board members. The board must establish the performance criteria against which it will be evaluated. • Execute regular quantitative analysis of board effectiveness. Require the board to “post a score” for all to see. Board members should self-evaluate after each board meeting against the governance criteria to which all members of the board have committed. In addition to self-evaluation, club boards should request and receive annual performance evaluations from fellow members. • Communicate regularly, openly and redundantly. Board activities should be communicated in multiple media formats - email, posted notices and hardcopy reports - to all club members. No member should be allowed the option of complaining that they are ill informed. 36




HOW CAN A CLUB BOARD CHANGE TO THE BPM STRUCTURE? Boards genuinely want to do their jobs well. Although board members may have highly successful careers in other sectors beyond clubs, many need coaching. There are two keys to developing better governance: • Desire - Board members truly must want to achieve excellence. That requires work, self-evaluation and the commitment to continuous improvement. • Education - Many governance and ethics experts can provide guidance. The key is to find those with an understanding of the nuances of club leadership.

frequency of their club visits, their own roles in everyday life, impacts on their own families and club-sourced impacts on their own financial capabilities. Peter Drucker, the esteemed scholar of business practices, identifies three essential functions of every board of directors: making and sustaining sound and effective strategy, trustworthy and open financial plans and planning, and executing effective governance. For club leaders, it is important to note that Drucker does not include management supervision, leadership by committees or

personnel management. Laughlin teaches that excellence in club governance is embodied in a board policies manual (BPM). He states, “The essential principles of good governance are that a) the roles of the primary players (board members, managers, and committees) are clearly and appropriately defined, b) the board speaks with one voice (and not through its various factions), and c) the board commits to excellence (in its dealings, communications and standards). The BPM is the storehouse of these principles.”

Applying such simple tactics and the discipline that keeps them simple is the great challenge in an emotionally charged setting. Board members must understand their emotional engagement and limitation using tools that minimise the negative impacts from the emotion and maximising the favourable possibilities of inspired leadership. GGA Partner Henry DeLozier and GGA Director Fred Laughlin kindly share their thoughts on Emotional Ownership in Clubs. GGA specialises in Governance, Member Surveys and Strategic Planning. Please contact Paul Hinton (Director - Asia Pacific) on 0415 222 607 or phinton@ for further information. WWW.GMA.ORG.AU




Applications are now open for the coveted Hostplus Hospitality Scholarship supported by Melbourne Food and Wine Festival and your business could benefit from a skilled up superstar on the team. The scholarship is back for its 5th year and once more offers a deserving up and comer the work-experience opportunity of a lifetime. Open to all Australian residents aged between 22 and 35 working across the full spectrum of the hospitality industry -from makers and bakers to servers and shakers- Hostplus and Melbourne Food and Wine Festival are offering the chance to learn from the best in the business, whatever that business may be, wherever they may be located. In addition to a personalised, 2 week, international work experience itinerary in 2018, 3 finalists will be invited to participate in an exclusive development day with Hostplus ambassador and acclaimed Melbourne chef, Shane Delia. Applications close 5pm AEST Friday 4 May 2018.





Work across the world.

Hostplus ambassador and hospitality superstar, Shane Delia

Applications open now for the Hostplus Hospitality Scholarship supported by Melbourne Food and Wine Festival. 22-35 and working in Hospitality? Apply now and you could be heading off on the whirlwind work experience adventure of a lifetime. Host-Plus Pty Limited ABN 79 008 634 704, AFSL No. 244392, RSEL No. L0000093, MySuper No. 68657495890198, HOSTPLUS Superannuation Fund ABN 68 657 495 890, RSE No. R1000054.


Me: Alexa, please book me a tee time for next Saturday morning. Alexa: Sure Greg, does 8:24am suit? Human behaviour can be pretty predictable. If something is convenient and affordable the masses will adopt it. Think the rise of Uber, Uber Eats, other food delivery services, pay pass, the fact you don’t log out of your social media apps and why you Google… well, pretty much everything. Convenience has always been valued at a premium. If we follow history, we know humans value time immensely. Even more so in a 2018 world as we continue to jam pack our lives with as many things as possible. We live busy lives. Saving time is at a premium and convenience leads to saving time. Enter the evolution of voice. We already know that 1 in 5 Google searches are done via voice and this number is going to continue to trend up as devices such as Google Home and Amazon Echo become staples in the household. But it’s not just voice search that’s on the rise, there’s a whole tidal wave of audio innovation coming as more and more of our lives become connected by natural human language.

Google Home and Alexa for Amazon Echo) get smarter… and smarter… and smarter. They build upon their interactions with their users through artificial intelligence. Now before your mind races too far into the abyss or you’re having flashbacks to The Terminator movies, let’s think about the remote control of your life that’s beside you right now or in your pocket – the smart phone. 10 years ago, you wouldn’t even comprehend what your smart phone can do today. History is going to repeat itself with voice controlled devices over the next 5-10 years. So, what can one of these voice controlled devices actually do? Despite only being in their infancy, anything from turning your home lights on and off, controlling your music across multiple devices, reading you the news, booking you a table at a restaurant, informing you which route you should take on your commute and the list goes on.

If you’re not familiar with Google Home and Amazon Echo, they are speaker devices that connect to voice-controlled assistants but not just any old pre-loaded computer system, these assistants (Google Assistant for

Then there is what we call ‘skills’ or ‘actions’ for these devices. Think of them as customised apps for your smart phone but they are developed for human voice interactions rather than touchscreen interactions. The PGA TOUR already has an Alexa ‘skill’ developed for users of the Amazon Echo that delivers services such as leaderboard updates and news. You might find yourself asking, “Alexa, ask PGA TOUR how Marc Leishman





is doing at the PLAYERS CHAMPIONSHIP” and you’ll have Alexa voice assistant deliver that information in a matter of seconds. Forecasting forwards for golf, let’s explore some possibilities: - Booking tee times at your club whilst making breakfast - Finding out your new handicap in the car on the way home - Finding a PGA Pro in your area and comparing prices/ services offered while you’re hanging out the laundry - Learning about upcoming events you can play in while you’re practicing your putting in the backyard - Tidying up your knowledge of the rules through voice interactions while you’re sweeping the floors It still might sound a little farfetched as we can already do so much on our computers, phones and tablets but please keep in mind the convenience factor. We can do other things whilst interacting with audio, we can’t with the written word or video. It saves time!

Golf Management Australia E-Mag - Autumn 2018  

Welcome to the seventh edition of the GMA National e-Magazine. This publication is designed to inform the membership of what is happening in...

Golf Management Australia E-Mag - Autumn 2018  

Welcome to the seventh edition of the GMA National e-Magazine. This publication is designed to inform the membership of what is happening in...