Back when Golf was Golden

by Dave Bisbee on March 24, 2011

1922_lyendecker_golfLong ago in a time almost forgotten the green fairways and 19th holes of golf courses across this great land were bastions of the business world. Deals were cut, careers were enhanced, mergers and acquisitions were orchestrated, and charities were enriched. It was almost necessary for a corporation to be identified with the game. PGA Tour events had no trouble finding a tournament sponsor to part with millions of dollars to have their name in the title of an event. Automobile manufacturers, storied Wall Street institutions, telecom companies, and more were lined up with check books ready. It was a great time no doubt.

Putting Business Back On Course

Then something went horribly wrong…Enron, Lehman Bros., and Bernie Madoff among many others cast a negative light on the excesses of Wall Street. The domino had been tipped. And, as if that was not enough an early morning car accident and the subsequent revelations that Golf’s golden boy was guilty of the kinds of transgressions normally associated with athletes of other sports… suddenly our great game was in trouble.

Golf became the lightening rod for all that was wrong in the world….ok that might be a slight exaggeration… but not much. Golf outings and Corporate Country Club memberships became an example of frivolous spending by companies out of touch with the realities of the working class. Tournament sponsorships were no longer the badge of prestige and credibility for a company, in fact sponsors headed for the exits as though a fire alarm had sounded.

But here’s the deal…GOLF IS NOT TO BLAME! It has been falsely accused, set up, and needs to be exonerated. So buckle up everyone this is the beginning of a new initiative and I need your help. I am calling it “Putting business back on course…the golf course”.

Oh I have heard all of the naysayers with their “the economy is too bad”, “I don’t have a job”, “the game takes too much time”, “it costs too much”, blah, blah, blah… and to them I say stop watching the news and go hit a bucket of balls. You just might meet your next employer or big client. The game has never been more affordable and accessible most courses are competing for your business. And as for the “how much time it takes” excuse I know of no other marketing strategy that can give me the kind of ROI that spending 4 hours of quality time with a decision maker on a golf course can.

Stimulus Plan

This is my “stimulus plan”…let’s play our way out of this recession/depression! Dedicate 1 round of golf a month to business golf. That is a start… and stay tuned to the Biz Golf Guru for more as we Put Business Back on Course.

Dave Bisbee

Dave Bisbee has been around the golf business for 30 years and brings to Biz Golf Guru his experience as both a business owner and golf professional. Dave will serve as the anchor for the Biz Golf Guru team of contributors by offering his unique insights of business golf as seen through the eyes of someone who has managed golf courses, golf companies and as a golf teaching professional.

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