What Are the Most Exciting Jobs in the Golf Industry?
It’s fun to watch your golf heroes win big tournaments on TV, like Henrik Stenson holding off Phil Mickelson this past weekend to win the 145th British Open with a blistering birdie run.
An account executive for a golf product or service is responsible for maintaining current accounts and developing new accounts in order to build sales.
Clients may include golf courses, tournaments, management companies, resorts and other golf related businesses that are interested in saving money or improving profits with your product.
Activities include making outbound telephone calls, researching businesses and developing contacts, creating written proposals, coordinating sales efforts with the marketing department, and more.
Well you do not have to be a classic outgoing salesperson, you should have personal drive and lots of energy.
It also helps to be able to come up with creative solutions to sales challenges.
To be a teaching golf professional, you should have some playing experience, preferably at the college or club level.
Beyond your golf skills, you must be able to communicate effectively with individuals of all ages.
In addition, you will likely be handling groups of 8 to 12 people, often school age children.
It is important to be professional while being courteous and friendly to students, their parents and your fellow staff members.
At certain golf schools or country clubs, you will be responsible for tracking the progress of students, and meeting with them periodically to discuss their goals.
You will also want to understand how to develop lesson plans, teach concepts and engage understanding in order for to effectively improve their golf skills.
Channel Marketing Manager
As a retail channel marketing manager you help develop business for golf brands and merchandisers.
You manage promotional activities in the retail channel which may include retailers, big-box stores, and pro shops among other outlets.
Your job will entail merchandising, setting promotional strategy, cooperative advertising ventures between the brand and retailers, new product demonstrations, and maintaining databases.
You must have a deep understanding of golf equipment, products and services, as well as knowledge about channel marketing.
You will be developing marketing plans with key clients with an eye toward building sales for your brand.
Membership Sales Manager
Golf clubs and country clubs of all levels are challenged with soliciting and enrolling new golfers into the club on an ongoing basis.
To be a membership sales manager, you will need excellent people skills.
You will not only need to develop new business for the club, you will interact with the club’s management and Board of Governors.
You will develop sales plans and manage team members tasked with membership outreach and development.
Because potential members have a wide variety of places they can spend their entertainment dollars, you will need a solid golf background in order to effectively sell the golf club’s advantages and benefits.
Golf Club Manager
Golf clubs rely on the manager to supervise the entire golf operation.
Areas of responsibility include the golf range, golf shop, golf services and golf cart operation.
Golf cart services include overseeing the food and beverage manager.
You will need to be highly organized, and be able to set goals for your division, communicate to staff and ensure targets are met.
Communication skills are vital as you will be interacting with the General Manager, Membership Director and other leadership at the golf course on an ongoing basis.
Club General Manager
Your primary mission as the general manager of a golf club is to provide a superior product for club members and guests.
You will be responsible for managing the club’s finances, maintaining a healthy cash flow and meeting financial obligations.
You will set the overall direction of the club, determine where resources are best allocated and oversee execution of club plans.
Excellent people skills are imperative as you will be maintaining relationships with the Board of Governors, membership and staff.
You will be tasked with providing periodic reports about the state of the club. Sales, marketing and business development are one of your primary responsibilities in order to ensure the financial health of the organization.
You will develop training and career development through regular staff reviews.
To become a general manager, many clubs will look for experience in the field as well as an advanced degree in either business administration or hospitality management.
Golf Course Superintendent
As a golf course superintendent, you will oversee all of the maintenance of the golf course.
You will be responsible for hiring and training your staff, including bringing them up to date on the latest trends in agronomy and turf chemical management.
You will communicate regularly with the golf course general manager about ground conditions, staff changes and future plans.
You will need to know golf course drainage and irrigation as well as herbicides, insecticides and fungicides.
You will manage the expenses of your department, and help plan the capital budget of the maintenance department. This includes determining equipment needs and any course upgrades and improvements.
You can get started by working at a golf course, and should pursue a degree program in golf course management at a qualified institution.
It will help to try to get an internship at the type of course you are interested in so you can develop contacts and additional experience.
You will also want to consider becoming certified through the Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA).
Not interested in any other golf career except touring golf professional?
Well, somebody has to travel the world and make millions of dollars — it might as well be you.
However, you have your work cut out for you. There are fewer than 2000 pros regularly entering tournaments across Asia, North America and Europe.
You will benefit greatly if you start as young as possible, get training from top instructors and dedicate your life to making the tour.
You will want to enter tournaments as often as you can to gauge your level of play, and learn how to compete in pressure situations.
It will also help to get a golf scholarship.
After college, head to qualifying school and see if you can win a spot on the pro tour.
The qualifying tournaments are held in California and Florida, and you must finish in the top three or four slots to have a chance.
If you do not make it, try again, or head to a smaller tour where you can develop your skills, and take another shot at the brass ring when you are ready.
Golf Sports Agent
Golf professionals have a lot on their plate.
They must deal with sponsorships, contracts and a myriad of other business relationships.
Since they must focus on golf, they hire a golf agent to take care of their business life and help develop their branded career.
To become a golf sports agent, you want to start by getting a degree in golf or sports administration.
This educational track includes training in finance, accounting and business.
While you are developing your education, begin to make contacts in the industry.
Much of the business is based on relationships, and it might take you a while to get a foothold.
After you obtain a client for the first time, make it your mission in life to do the best job you can for them.
Once you have a record of success, you can expand and acquire additional clients.
Retail Sales Associate
There are other jobs in the golf industry that aren’t on the green.
Retail sales may not be as exciting as touring professional, but it is fun, interesting and a great way to get started in the golf industry.
It can also be a rewarding as a full or part time career in itself.
At a retail golf operation, you will be tasked with staying up to date on the features and benefits of golf equipment, apparel, accessories and gifts for golfers of all ages.
You will have to know the latest technology, and be able to communicate the advantages to customers.
Good retail sales associates will develop a client list they nurture and keep in touch with in order to encourage repeat sales.
If you want to advance beyond the retail sales level, you might move into retail sales management, channel marketing or golf course operations.
Sure, it’s exciting to stride the best golf courses in the world, testing your mettle against the best golfers in the sport.
Afterwards, you can spend your time in mansions, fancy sports cars and hot nightclubs.
But there are many exciting careers in the wide world of golf.
The industry needs talented individuals who can lead and inspire others to meet challenging goals.
Download our Golf Career Guide to see many of the opportunities available to you.
Or, take our Golf Career Assessment to see where you fit in the world of golf.
There are plenty of jobs in the golf industry and you might be surprised at what suites you best.
Find out how Keiser University College of Golf and Sport Management can help you develop skills and contacts to help you succeed. Contact us today!