If you thought your golf club membership was just for golf leagues or dinner with the family, think again. Your golf club membership can be an asset to your business, too. Need to strike a deal with a prospective client? Invite them to play a round of golf. Want to host a monthly off-site meeting with colleagues? Reserve an event space at your golf club.
Here are five ways to use your golf club membership for business.
Play a Round of Golf
Inviting a prospective client to play a round of golf is the most common way businessmen and women use their club membership for professional purposes. In fact, you may be surprised how many business deals are discussed on the golf course. Unlike the phrase, "don't mix business with pleasure," playing a round of golf with a client or boss gives you plenty of face-to-face time, relieves stress or tension if there is any, allows you to get to know the person you're playing with, and creates a more relaxed environment for discussing business.
When it comes to conducting business on the course, follow these golf etiquette tips and it's more likely your efforts will pay off.
Reserve a Meeting Space
If you're not a golfer, it's the dead of winter, or you just need a meeting space away from your office, a golf club offers a great retreat. You’ll be assured of extraordinary service and food, fewer interruptions and an environment that fosters creativity.
For example, Karl Andreasen, an oral surgeon and social member at North Oaks Golf Club, largely uses his membership for business (although he looks forward to enjoying Easter brunch at the club with his family every Spring). Each month, he hosts meetings for two clubs of fellow dentists, who meet to collaborate on managing very complex situations in their industry. The original group has met for the last nine years, and the second group launched last year.
He also hosts an educational program for support staff of doctors like him. "They can learn how to integrate some of the concepts and processes we talk about," Karl says.
According to Karl, the club is easily accessible, has great food and wine, nice servers, and the people love it. The staff has also been super helpful in making these meetings and programs run effortlessly on his part. "The staff gets things set up for us and helps troubleshoot if it's not working," he says.
Host a Work Event
It's the end of the year. Your employees worked their tails off all year-round and deserve to be recognized for their accomplishments. Why not host a holiday party to celebrate the season and show your employees how much you appreciate their hard work? And what better place to host the event than your golf club.
Golf clubs offer a beautiful event setting no matter the time of year. Once again, you'll be treated to wonderful cuisine and friendly service. And that's exactly what your employees deserve.
Enjoy a Happy Hour
Consider setting up a happy hour at your club. It’s a great way to wind down after a stressful week or just get to know one another outside of work. Some would call this a small work retreat of sorts. Enjoy hand-crafted cocktails or crack open a beer and talk about anything that comes to mind — weekend plans, upcoming vacations, personal interests, sports, current events, etc. Not only are happy hours fun, but getting your team out of the office can actually be beneficial for business. For example, out-of-office gatherings can bring team members together, boost morale, encourage reflection, and foster new ideas.
Treat a Client to Lunch or Dinner
Want to work on nurturing client relationships? Why not treat them to lunch or dinner at your golf club? We understand a lot of business deals occur on the course, but keeping your work relationships strong will set you up for success. If your office is located close to the club, like Karl's, meet your client for lunch or dinner. Meeting them off site and outside of business hours shows your commitment to maintaining a healthy partnership.
See? There are several great ways to leverage your golf club membership for business whether it's playing a round with a prospective client, hosting a fun event for your employees, reserving a meeting space, getting to know one another outside of work, or treating a client to lunch. And of course, you can still use the club to play on a golf league, challenge your spouse to a tennis match, or attend a family-friendly event.