Let’s tell the world – golf is good for you and good for society

Ian Randell, Chief Executive of the PGAs of Europe, gives an overview on what the organisation is planning for 2017 and why it is vital golf offers customers a shorter format of the game.

Predicting the future in any walk of life is difficult, if not impossible. But being prepared for future changes to society and the market in which you deal is imperative to ongoing success. At the PGAs of Europe we are looking forward to the coming year and ensuring our Member Country PGAs are preparing themselves and their individual PGA Professional members for what lies ahead.

We work with a number of contributors and Media Partners, including GOLF RETAILING, to help our PGAs and their members in a wide variety of areas by creating and curating content that is useful and relevant to them. The provision of content such as that you will find in GOLF RETAILING is an invaluable part of the continued system of advancing the golf profession and its Professionals.

We also work with some fantastic Corporate Partners – one such being Golf Pride – who are also able to provide guidance and business opportunities. The leading golf grip manufacturer has helped to create a series of business and retail-focused articles that aim to further PGA Professionals’ businesses and make them even more profitable.

Meanwhile people such as our very own Director of Education & Membership, Tony Bennett, continue to use wide-ranging experience and a global perspective to ensure that our network of PGAs and Professionals are fully informed of how the sport is developing around the world. Tony recently shared his thoughts for what the future holds for golf development and how, despite there being some negative overtones within golf, the sport will continue to advance much like it has done so already.

This is exactly the type of message I wish to carry into 2017: a message to the world that we must continue to change the conversation, embrace change and promote the significant benefits that our sport brings to individuals and society as a whole. Golf has adapted and thrived for hundreds of years and will continue to do so because it can provide variety and flexibility to offer shorter, quicker, affordable forms of the game to those who want it, whilst also offering an antidote to the stresses and strains of modern society and technology overload for those who crave that.

At the recent Club Leadership Summit, I was pleased to hear Keith Pelley, Chief Executive of the European Tour, speak about the fact that 72-hole tournaments would remain the staple diet of Professional tournament golf but that they would be trying more and more new formats and activities around the events to add greater interest to a wider audience. Furthermore, Jeremy Slessor of European Golf Design (EGD) shared his view that the best layout for any golf course would be to embrace 3-, 6- and 9-hole loops thus providing the possibility to play 3, 6, 9, 12, 15 or 18 holes. Makes sense!

We are delighted to be continually developing our Golf Development Partnerships and, having recently renewed our successful relationship with SNAG Golf, and ignited a new partnership with US Kids Golf, we are excited to be working through developments in this area in early 2017 that continue to make golf fun at the first introduction and provide the perfect example as to how golf is evolving to meet the changes in society.

We hope you will join all of us at the PGAs of Europe when we say we look forward to a very successful and positive 2017.

An Association of 36 National PGAs (31 European and 5 international) with a collective membership in excess of 21,000 golf professionals, the PGAs of Europe is committed to the advancement of golf, golfers and the golf profession across Europe. The Association is also a partner in Ryder Cup Europe as the sole member of the Ryder Cup European Development Trust, and is widely acknowledged as a lead body in the delivery of golf development expertise on a global basis through its collaboration with The R&A in its Working for Golf programme.