Joe Murphy and Keith Bartlett from the St. George’s Golf and Country Club in Toronto have been writing in their GNN blogs about how clubs in the area are getting involved leading up to and during next month’s RBC Canadian Open.
The golf business, as I’ve said for years, is a small business, a very tight industry. Other golf courses, be they public or private, are not only seen as competitors.
I’ve been in the golf business for about 32 years and, over my entire career, the philosophy has been as goes the golf business, so goes the golf courses and operators. In other words, we all benefit when the game is strong.
With golf, we all know we’re in it for the good of the game. If the business grows and rounds are up, we all get a piece of the pie, so that’s why I think that we’re pretty well all good friends in the industry.
If someone needs a little help, we’re there with a helping hand. That’s the golf business, in general.
In this case, it’s a win-win situation. St. George’s will have more hands on deck and the expertise of other people in making the Canadian Open a success, but the people who are coming from other clubs will benefit, as well.
They’ll see the service levels that are required for such an event. They’ll see what St. George’s does, what Golf Canada does and what RBC does and they’ll come back with good tidbits for their own club.
How many times in your life do you get to work at a world-class event such as the Canadian Open?
Personally, they’re going to get a lot out of it and I think the golf course they work for will get some good information when that person returns to the club.
The golf industry has changed so much in the last 30 to 50 years, but it’s still kept its closeness.
In the good, old days, there were a lot of mom and pop operations, small golf courses everywhere trying to make a living. Now, it’s big business with a lot of high end courses, but the charm and the camaraderie is still there.
I’ve known Joe Murphy for a long time and he’s one of my favourite general managers and I mean that sincerely. He’s a great guy and a friend and it’s nice to see that throughout the years, that essence of the golf industry hasn’t changed.
Most of my best friends are from the golf industry and it’s the same with a lot of general managers and a lot of golf professionals. It’s a very tightly-knit industry.
Some people might believe that in the good, old days, we all got along better and had more respect for one another and that now it’s more cutthroat, but I don’t believe that. I still see the same charm and I’m very proud of that.