Those new to the industry were also blown away by the variety and depth of conference speakers and the strong bond between golf club general managers.
As outgoing GMA President Damon Lonnie said at the conference opening: it is not only about what members take away from the talented array of local and internationals presenters but also about networking with your peers.
Golf Australia board member, Kerri-Anne Kennerley, and marketing guru, Amanda Stevens set the tone with their inspirational opening.
Amanda’s presentation, ‘She Marketing-The Secrets of Female Engagement Participation and Loyalty’, was both entertaining and informative.
And the quality just kept coming, be it in plenary sessions or workshops.
The diversity of speakers drove the success of the conference.
Whether it was Greg DeRosa, from the Roaring Fork Club in Colorado, former International Cricket Council CEO, Malcolm Speed, renowned chef, Ian Curley or Dr Adam Fraser and creating ‘The Third Space’ for our mental health and wellbeing, the quality continued unabated.
And believe it or not, there was even a hypnotist.
Rohan Gazzard – the ‘Bizarre Gazzard’ – presented on the Power of the Positive Mind. It is an understatement to say he had us spellbound, especially the handful of delegates who volunteered to be his ‘guinea pigs’ as part of an impressive show.
And the conference was as informative as it was entertaining, with, among others things, educational sessions on Benchmarking and Marketing.
Above all, though, delegates met other general managers with a range of similar challenges. They are now friends whom they can call upon for support at any time.
Everyone came away refreshed and with an overwhelming enthusiasm and new set of skills to tackle the daily hurdles they face in the rapidly evolving golf industry.
So it’s onward and upward until Adelaide in October 2017, where, impossible as it seems, the bar will be set even higher.
Until then…Michael Davis