Doing business with clients can be done in many forms, in many places. Lunch meetings, conference room meetings or just a few phone calls. But when the weather is nice, few places are better than a golf course. It’s possible to mix business with pleasure in this case. Not sure how? Don’t worry; here are seven tips to successfully conduct business during a round of golf.
Keep the play fun.
There might be some added pressure if you’re out there on the course with a business associate, but just relax and play to your own ability. Don’t try to lose or intentionally miss shots, because that could backfire into insulting the client. Keep score and use the handicap system to make sure everything is fair and square.
Remember golf etiquette.
This goes along with playing fairly. If you’re extremely competitive, try to scale that back just a bit. Your conduct on the course is a reflection of your personality. Cursing bad shots will show your client that you have a bad temper. Have fun with the good shots and compliment your playing partner on their successes.
Save the alcohol for another time.
Sharing a few brews on the golf course may be perfect for a Saturday on the links with some buddies. But if you’re on the course for business purposes, it’s important to stay sober. Drinking could be seen as unprofessional, and having a few too many could cause problems and damage any business relationship.
Dress to impress.
Or at least follow the dress code of the golf course. If you’re new to the course where you’ll be playing, call ahead to see what the standard attire is for golfers. A good rule of thumb is to go conservative, but add some of your own style, too.
Know when to get down to business.
Golf is a great business activity, because 18 holes offers a lot of time together with your client. There’s plenty of time to discuss business, so you can (and should) be strategic. Here’s a rule of thumb: Refrain from talking business before the fifth hole and after the 15th, and also when someone is preparing for a shot or putting on the green. This will help break things up so the golf round is enjoyable, but you have a chance to do business as well.
This is a good choice for very novice golfers or ones that haven’t been on the course for years. Take a few lessons to get the basics down and improve your play. You’ll want to wait to combine business and golf anyway until you know you can play at a basic level. Going out there and not knowing what you’re doing will likely take the focus off business.
Hazeltine National Golf Club is a private golf club located in Chaska, Minn., about 30 minutes southwest of downtown Minneapolis. The club opened in 1962 with a mission to build and maintain a golf course suitable for the conduct of national championships. Hazeltine is one of only two courses in the United States to have hosted the U.S. Open, PGA Championship, U.S. Senior Open, U.S. Women’s Open, U.S. Amateur, and Ryder Cup. Hazeltine’s meeting and event space, golf shop and specified services in the learning center are open to the public. More information about becoming a member at Hazeltine is available at www.hazeltinenational.com.
Topics: Golf Tips