Golf Consulting: 8 questions to ask…
June 23, 2011 Leave a comment
Created for G3k Consulting.
It’s the dream isn’t it? That one day you will own a golf club, set up exactly how you want it. A space where you and your buddies can get on the course a play a round on any day, at any time. A clubhouse that stocks your favourite tipple and where you can all catch up after a day on your fairways and greens. However, we all know there is more to owning a golf club and I suggest you ask yourself the following eight questions before taking the plunge.
1. Is this a lifestyle business or a profit making exercise? Or both?
Either way, you have to start putting some numbers down regarding how it will function. Get your head around all the basic functions required for a golf club – design and construction, environment, operations, management, marketing etc. Decide how each will work and project what you expect in return.
2. Is the site the best land and location you can find?
There is more to a golf development that just quality holes and stunning scenery. You need a market in the area and you need to provide something different to what that market can already access. Spending most of your budget on digging up every inch of the land to create a course may not be fruitful. Think of the bigger picture.
3. Is the site reliant on real estate?
If it is overly so, then DON`T do it! Seek advice on what is “overly so”.
4. Have you got your costs and concept right?
Everything should be double checked with business advisers. Create three scenarios – blue sky, doomsday and the realistic/middle of the road scenario. If the business can survive the doomsday then you are a step closer to owning a golf club.
5. Is the designer the right one for the product you need to create?
Whether you go down the route of getting a big name on board or specific consultants, it has to fit your target market. A feasibility study should tell you whether your design is going to work or not. You might get a course with great holes designed by the likes of Monty but if it does not fit the surroundings then it will be money wasted.
6. Is the construction team the right one for the project?
There are many specialist golf construction companies out there so select the one that fits the product you want to create. If you are refurbishing an existing course then make sure disruption is minimal. Construction is not an area that you want to overlook then spend more money (and disruption) further down the line fixing.
7. What do customers want?
Get together some focus groups, tell them your concept and ask them if they think it will work. Even if you think it’s obvious that it will work, ask the punters. Make sure you ask a group of people who will tell you the truth! This feedback is vital and should be consulted in the planning stages.
8. Is there a realistic plan in place with contingencies?
All sorts of weird and wonderful situations can occur during the development. What if you discover an archaeological find during the dig? Or an exceptional weather system causes delay? Check your contingency plan with advisers and make sure it is viable.
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