Everyone always says that all the business is done on the golf course. So, how do you get there in the first place? Unfortunately it’s mostly the higher ups and bosses who make the business trips to nice courses to meet and play with clients, but it is possible for you to get in that coveted foursome.
Here are some ideas to keep in mind:
Be Proactive in the Office If you know that your boss is an avid golfer and he frequently takes his clients out to play, let him know that you are a golfer. This is the first step to getting your name out there. Let your boss know how long you’ve played and what level player you are. Whoever can bring the “stud” golfer out to the course always impresses the other players and you could be a big asset for your boss when it comes to closing the deal.
Get Comfortable on the Course See if your coworkers want to go out for a weekend round of golf. You can use this round to get comfortable in a semi-business setting on the links. A round of golf with people that you work with is totally different than playing with your friends. You can practice proper etiquette and your knowledge of the rules.
Engage in Golf Talk With Clients Whenever you meet with clients and are chit-chatting before the meetings begin, let them know you are interested in golf and see if they are golfers as well. Often times this can result in an automatic invite to the course because your client will mention your name to the boss and he or she will invite you out. You can build better connections with your clients when you discuss things outside of business.
Practice Don’t make a fool out of yourself on the course. Hit the driving range a few times a week just in case you get that phone call asking you to show up for an 8 a.m. round the next day.
Show Up at Company Outings If your company is hosting a golf event and you didn’t make the cut to play in the event, show up anyway. Go to the course and grab a golf cart to drive around the course. This will show your interest and should get you an invite to play in the next event.
Watch Golf on TV Make sure you’re keeping up with the various professional tours, so that when someone starts talking about the tournament last weekend, you can pitch in with your thoughts. Download the PGA Tour app on your phone so you can easily check scores and news. Try to become an encyclopedia for golf.
Learn the Game If you are not a golfer and want to get into that coveted foursome with your clients, then get proactive about it. Go take a lesson, read about the rules of golf online, watch videos and ask questions. Golf etiquette is EXTREMELY important, so learn that as well. Make sure you rake each bunker you are in, fix divots on the green and fill divots in the fairway with sand and seed.
Most businessmen are not the best golfers, so don’t worry about having to shoot even par every time out. Just make sure you can get through a round of 18 holes without having to pick your ball up on every hole.