1. Face Time. Where else can you spend four quality hours with your company director or valued customers? With today’s busy schedules most of us are lucky if we can get five minutes! There is simply no other sport with the amount of quiet time between shots that allows for wide-ranging conversations and mutual interests to be discovered.
2. Serene Surroundings. You can plan a client meeting in an office surrounded by water, nature, and sand instead of four white walls. This instantly creates a more relaxed and friendly environment in which to do business without the normal distractions.
3. Business Intelligence. You can learn more about a person in four hours golfing than in a lifetime of meetings. Not just by what they say but by how they handle themselves on the course. Do they play by the rules and control their emotions? Or do they fudge and blow a fuse?
4. Friendships Forged. An interest in golf alone can be enough to move your friendships several notches up the corporate ladder. Best of all, the friendships built around golf tend to last a lifetime so as people move around new opportunities will open up for you.
5. Open Doors on the Road. When you travel, golf is a great way to open doors by letting prospects or business contacts know you are in the area and up for a game.
Golf is Good for Business
6. Perfect Gifting. When someone is a golfer it’s easy to give a small gift that makes an impact. A golf book or logoed hat or towel from St Andrews can quickly and inexpensively enhance a relationship.
7. Game for Life. It’s a sport that suits all ages, backgrounds, and abilities. Thanks to the handicap system, people of widely different abilities can play together and still compete. So the 60-something Director can still beat his 30-something prospect or employee, while the 30-something executive can look forward to decades of on-course meetings and deals. Try doing that on the squash court!
8. Advantage Women. If you are a businesswoman, playing golf is an even greater advantage. Adrienne Wax, co-author of Even Par: How Golf helps Women Gain the Upper Hand In Business, says, “Outside the office, you can communicate differently with your higher-level peers and get to know one another in a way that the office can’t provide. Being able to talk golf in the office gives you a chance to bond with the bigwigs. If you can talk about golf, suddenly you have reasons to talk with the Director.”
9. Networking. One of the great things about golf is you can just show up at the club and get a game. Depending on your business, you could be looking at three prospects each and every time you tee it up! Golf is the ultimate networking environment for all kinds of professionals and services.
10. The 19th Hole. After your round, the 19th holes provides the perfect setting to take your newly enhanced relationship to the next level or, indeed, to go ahead and ask for the order!