"Sometimes you don't see the business restraints at a private club that you would see at a more business-oriented club," says Rick Slattery, superintendent of Locust Hill CC in Rochester, N.Y., who has worked at both types of clubs.
How much does your course get? Slattery
says members at Locust Hill
, a private club, are more liberal with money if it's available to spend.But before coming to Locust Hill, Slattery worked at a semiprivate course where he says the owner was interested in making money before spending it.
basically told me, 'Rick, if you make the course better and more people come here to play because of it, then I'm going to make more money.So I'll take my share off the top, and the club gets everything else." Slattery
improved the course's condition, and more people came to play it.Hence, there was more money in the coffer to spend on maintenance."Instead of spending money up-front, the owner wanted it in his
pocket first," Slattery
While golf courses approach budget-making differently, there are also many common denominators that most endure in the process.Slattery
says a big problem with many courses' budgets is that they're not rising at the same level of golfers' expectations for outstanding turf.
What to Cut and What Not to Cut When Cuts Must be Made
"That's the most difficult part of forming a budget - assessing those expectations," Slattery
advises superintendents to learn business lingo so they can hold informed conversations and understand the logic behind bottom lines and profit margins.
Slattery notes that members, owners, general managers, and members of green committees and financial committees are business- savvy people.
Where the money goes
"You have to be able to speak in business terms," Slattery