5 Tips to Attract & Retain Great Employees

It is no secret that the pandemic has made hiring and retaining good employees more challenging than ever. Increased government subsidies, remote learning, and the desire to have a flexible work schedule have all played a role in minimizing the number of candidates applying for jobs.

As important as it is for your club to be member-focused, it is now equally important to create an employee-focused culture to ensure the club is delivering the level of service your members expect.

GGA Partners’ Patrick DeLozier, the director of executive search for the firm, offers five insights to help you find and retain great employees.

1. Recruit with retention in mind

Retaining great employees begins with recruiting great people. A descriptive and succinct job description will provide a clear understanding of what the position entails. The interview process should be focused on the candidate and their capabilities rather than what the job you’re hiring for entails. During the interview, ask thought-provoking questions.

You want to understand why the applicant is interested in the position and how this position fulfills his/her career aspirations. You also want to learn how an applicant will react to different situations so prepare scenarios and let the applicant describe how they would handle it. Through the responses to these types of questions, you will gain keen insight into whether the applicant will thrive within the club’s culture now and in the future.

2. Train for the vision and mission

Once on board, new employees will only succeed with the proper training and tools to get the job done. Before learning how to set a table, greet a member, or mow the 15th fairway, your employees need to clearly understand the club’s vision and mission.

If your vision is to provide the highest level of personal service, then it is important to provide a toolkit that includes photos of members and their families along with their special interests. Or, if your vision is to be the best club in the area, it is imperative that your orientation process include an explanation of what your management team defines as best practices.

3. Provide clear paths for advancement

Some of your employees will be perfectly content to stay in the same role throughout their tenure at the club, while others are keen to advance. For the latter, a lack of opportunity to grow and advance is the reason they will move on.

The best way to retain great employees is to take an interest in their career goals, offering opportunities such as advanced training, continuing education, shadowing, or mentoring programs. A clear commitment to cultivating a successful future for an individual employee creates a compelling long-term value proposition that enables them to see why, in turn, they should commit to the future of your club.

4. Listen and you’ll learn

As important as it is to poll members about the club, it is equally important to allow your employees to have an open door to provide ways to improve procedures, systems, and training. After all, they are on the front lines, interacting with fellow employees and your members every day.

Using survey tools to engage your workforce to seek feedback, hosting department listening sessions, or placing an old-fashioned suggestion box in the employee lounge provide opportunities for employees to offer ideas to improve overall service. Not all suggestions will be on point, but many will. In those cases, employees should be recognized and rewarded. Listening to employees not only helps to uncover new ways to improve but also shows the employee that their opinion matters and that they are part of furthering the club’s mission.

5. Invest in your human capital

The pandemic caused employees to rethink what truly matters in their job. What matters beyond earning a living wage are intangibles such as a diverse work force, an environment that recognizes outcome over output, mangers who trust employees to do the right thing, and workplace flexibility.  Creating a workplace built on trust, flexibility, and diversity while providing expected benefits such as health insurance, paid vacations, and personal time is the investment your club should be making to attract and retain great employees.

Recruiting employees with the potential to be great employees is not an easy task. It requires asking the right questions from the onset, proper training, an open-door communications policy, taking the time to understand and help advance their careers. But most of all, it requires that you trust and empower them to do the job of which they are capable.

A Club Leader’s Perspective: Emerging Trends & Challenges

GGA Partners Releases A Club Leader’s Perspective on Emerging Trends & Challenges Research Report

More than 500 club leaders weigh-in on trends, challenges, and pressing needs in club management emerging in the wake of the global health crisis. Now available for download.

TORONTO, Ontario (June 15, 2021) – GGA Partners, an international consulting firm and trusted advisor to many of the world’s most successful golf courses, private clubs, resorts, and residential communities, has released the results of an industry-wide research survey of more than 500 club leaders.  

The 2021 A Club Leader’s Perspective: Emerging Trends & Challenges report is a collaboration between GGA Partners and the Club Management Association of America. Researchers and analysts from both firms partnered in the development and analysis of the findings.

The research, which serves as a contemporary update on pressing needs in club management, takes a look at emerging trends and challenges from the perspective of those in club leadership roles, capturing insight from 515 club leaders, the majority of whom serve as general managers, COOs, and CEOs of private clubs in North America.

A Club Leader's Perspective: Emerging Trends & Challenges

Club leaders weighed-in on emerging trends and challenges across five primary areas: 1) industry outlooks and the ripple effects of COVID-19, 2) human resources and workforce demands, 3) the membership experience, value proposition, and programming, 4) capital planning and long-range improvement strategies, and 5) financial position, budgeting, and forecasting.

“Even before the pandemic, significant change was underway across the private club landscape,” explained Derek Johnston, a partner in the firm. “The crisis has not only accelerated these nascent changes but also introduced new obstacles and challenges for clubs to overcome. The findings of this report will be a useful reference tool for club leaders as they navigate an uncharted path forward and reset for growth beyond the coronavirus pandemic.”

This latest report is a continuation of the GGA Partners Perspective research initiative, a series of surveys the firm deployed in the spring of 2020 which dive into the attitudes, preferences, and industry outlooks of distinct club industry cohorts. The prior installment, A Member’s Perspective: The Shifting Private Club Landscape, featured findings from a global survey of more than 6,300 private club members on their attitudes toward the club industry during the pandemic and how they expect clubs to respond.

To view the research results and key insights found in A Club Leader’s Perspective: Emerging Trends & Challenges, click on the link below.

Download the report here

 

About GGA Partners

GGA Partners™ is an international consulting firm and trusted advisor to many of the world’s most successful golf courses, private clubs, resorts, and residential communities.  We are dedicated to helping owners, asset managers, club and community leaders, investors and real estate developers tackle challenges, achieve objectives, and maximize asset performance.

Established in 1992 as the KPMG Golf Industry Practice, our global team of experienced professionals leverage in-depth business intelligence and proprietary global data to deliver impactful strategic solutions and lasting success. GGA Partners has offices in Toronto, Ontario; Phoenix, Arizona; Bluffton, South Carolina; and Dublin, Ireland. For more information, please visit ggapartners.com.

About CMAA

Founded in 1927, the Club Management Association of America (CMAA) is the largest professional association for managers of membership clubs with 6,800 members throughout the US and internationally. Our members contribute to the success of more than 2,500 country, golf, athletic, city, faculty, military, town, and yacht clubs. The objectives of the Association are to promote relationships between club management professionals and other similar professions; to encourage the education and advancement of members; and to provide the resources needed for efficient and successful club operations. Under the covenants of professionalism, education, leadership, and community, CMAA continues to extend its reach as the leader in the club management practice. CMAA is headquartered in Alexandria, VA, with 42 professional chapters and more than 40 student chapters and colonies. Learn more at cmaa.org.

GGA Partners is proud to be a long-standing CMAA Business Partner.

 

Media Contact

Bennett DeLozier
Manager, GGA Partners
602-614-2100
bennett.delozier@ggapartners.com

You’re Now the Leader

In today’s world, where technology, media, and consumer demand intersect in a constant state of disruption, leadership starts with understanding and dealing with change. Henry DeLozier provides perspective on how superintendents can rise to the challenge.

Times have sure changed. Now you’re the one whom young men and women — the ones who aspire to your position one day — look to for guidance and assurance. And it’s in those hopeful faces, full of equal amounts potential and self-doubt, that your biggest challenge and the most important aspect of your job lies.

It’s called leadership. And in today’s world, where technology and media and consumer demand are intersecting in a constant state of disruption, leadership starts with effectively understanding and dealing with change. Among the biggest changes for golf course superintendents in the last decade:

 

  • Agronomic knowledge has become “table stakes.” Knowing the science of growing grass efficiently and effectively has gotten most superintendents into the game. The superintendent is often the best-educated member of the management staff in many facilities. There is no way to overstate the importance and reach of agronomic knowledge, and yet the job is so much more now.
  • Techniques have advanced. Generations of superintendents schooled in the college of hard knocks have found new and innovative solutions to age-old problems. These solutions have resulted in more efficient usage of water, advanced and less damaging pesticide management, and improved playing conditions arising from healthier and denser turf.
  • Environmentalism is of top-tier importance. If everyone was as diligent an environmental steward as golf course superintendents are, we would live in a better, safer world. Trained in the chemical sciences and well informed through professional resources like GCSAA, new generations of superintendents have introduced planet-friendly solutions to fertility and water scarcity challenges.
  • Golfers’ expectations have become more robust and detailed. In their insistence on improved playing conditions, golfers — God love ’em — have continued to push for tournament-quality conditions daily. Their demands, not unlike the quality demands of consumers for any other product or service for which they pay a premium, add stress and push budgets across the country.

If those are some of the major changes currently affecting the superintendent’s world, what might be over the horizon in terms of effective leadership qualities? From our perspective, it’s retaining your best talent. Although job-hopping in many industries has slowed this year as economic uncertainties weigh on employees, the situation could change as the economy and job market continue to improve, especially if employees aren’t feeling supported by their employer. It’s a challenge shared by your peers in organizations across the board.

“Employees crave a rewarding and purposeful workplace atmosphere. Now is the time for organizations to evaluate what is working well for their people, and what’s not resonating,” says Laine Thomas Conway of Alight Solutions, a global consulting firm. “When employees feel their employers are continually improving their offerings and working to enhance the employee experience, they are likely to remain positive and committed to their organizations, and in turn, employers can better retain top talent.”

In other words, says Tom Wilson, the CEO of Allstate Insurance: treat employees like customers. “They don’t pay you in dollars, but in hard work. That has led us to an employee choice model in the new world,” he says. Here are several tactical suggestions to help your team members:

 

  • Education grants for the children of your crew. When the club or golf course funds educational support for the children of its workers, your crew will see you as the employer of choice.
  • Field days for employees’ children. Help families share in the workplace culture and pride with your team. Most children want to see where their parents work, and what cooler place is there than a golf course?
  • Regular feedback sessions. Give employees the same feedback opportunities customers have with retailers and service providers.
  • All-team meetings. Help crew members understand their place in the overall team effort, including other departments and functions at the club and course.

It’s no longer enough to react to changes affecting our careers. To be an effective leader and to encourage your best players to remain part of the team, we must anticipate the next wave of change heading in our direction.

This article was authored by Henry DeLozier for Golf Course Industry magazine.

Mid-Year Predictions for the Second Half of 2021

At the start of the new year and in the spirit of planning, the thought leaders at GGA Partners sat down to predict what we believed to be coming throughout the year and shared our 2021 Predictions on the Shape of the Next Normal. Now, halfway through 2021 with the spring season in the books and summer underway, we reconvened GGA leaders for a mid-year check-in on predictions for the latter half of the year.

1. Ensuring fair and equitable access to amenities remains top of mind, especially on the golf course

A trending topic throughout the industry is golf’s demand surge and how long it will sustain, much has been written on this point and those who are closely watching rounds played metrics anticipate a clearer reading by the end of the summer.

Stephen Johnston, GGA’s founding partner, expects that private clubs will see the surge continue to elevate rounds played by members which will likely increase issues relating to compaction of tee traffic and accessibility.  He predicts the benchmark regarding average number of rounds per member to be higher by approximately 10% following the pandemic and also increased golf course utilization by members’ spouses and family members.  Both factors will create a greater demand for tee times at private clubs.

Johnston believes some clubs may need to consider permitting round play by fivesomes instead of foursomes, potentially catalyzing logistical challenges such as a greater need for single-rider power carts in order to maintain speed of play at the same rate as foursomes with all players using power carts. For club managers and course operators, this entails an increased need for current and detailed evaluation of the benefits of membership and the relationship between playing privileges and the practical ability to book a tee time and get on-course.

2. Effective demand management is key and will shift from agile, flexible approaches to new operating standards as demand stabilizes

During the pandemic and throughout 2020, many golf, club, and leisure businesses recognized the increased need to more accurately and routinely measure the utilization of amenities, adapting operations management to react quickly to change.

Craig Johnston, head of GGA’s transaction advisory practice, anticipates an evolution in this one-day-at-a-time, agile monitoring approach into a new and more formalized standard of operating procedures.  “At the start of 2021, we said we would see clubs provide flexibility and experiment with various operational changes,” he explained.  “With the pandemic feeling like it’s steadily moving toward the rear-view mirror, members will be expecting clubs to begin instituting the ‘new normal’ operations and the data compiled by clubs in the first half of the year will be critical to deciding on the new normal.”

Johnston believes that membership demand will continue to be strong through the second half of the year and that it is likely utilization will reduce marginally as members begin travelling again for work and social obligations.  Even with a marginal reduction in utilization, demand for private club services will remain strong and will continue to put pressure on capacity and access in most clubs.

Senior Partner Henry DeLozier encourages club and facility operators to embrace short-term continuations of high demand while keeping an eye on the future and the non-zero probability of a demand shift in the coming years.  “Clubs must create pathways to sustain demand while navigating utilization volume.  It is unwise to place hard or irreversible limitations on capacity while clubs are at historic maximums for demand and usage,” cautioned DeLozier. “Clubs will do well to establish a clear understanding of demand and utilization to enable innovative programs which serve to fill periods of low demand in the future.”

3. Ongoing uncertainty about the pandemic’s long-term impact on club finances will increase the review and reevaluation of club financial projections to ensure sustained budget flexibility

While data regarding utilization, participation, and engagement throughout the summer months continues to be captured and consolidated, business leaders should not delay their financial planning and instead get to work on reevaluating finances and updating their future forecasts.

“Now is the time to review, evaluate, and reset club debt levels,” emphasized Henry DeLozier. “Clubs need to recast financial projections based upon elevated joining/initiation fees arising from high demand.”

In support of alacrity in financial planning, DeLozier notes that labor shortages spurred by the pandemic will increase payroll-related costs at a material level. He also predicts that comprehensive risk review is needed at most clubs to evaluate possible impacts arising from cyber-crime and/or declining club revenues during 2022.

Beyond internal shake-ups in utilization or operations, club leaders should be anticipating external impacts that could impact their financial plans.  A hypothetical example raised by DeLozier is if the U.S. economy were to become more inflationary.  In such a circumstance he believes clubs would see an increase in the costs of labor and supplies which would necessitate increases in member dues and fees, a deceleration of new-member enrollments as consumer confidence dips, and a slight slow-down in housing demand.

Right now, uncertainty remains with respect to the virus as well as the resulting economic impact from the pandemic. From a financial standpoint, clubs will do well to advance their forward planning while retaining budget elasticity.  “It will be imperative for clubs and boards to build flexibility into their budgets and agility into their operations,” added Craig Johnston.

4. Existing governance practices, policies, and procedures will be revisited, refurbished, and reinvigorated

A litany of new ways of operating and governing the club arose as a result of the pandemic, some of which suggest an efficacy that can be sustained in a post-pandemic environment.  Essential to assimilating these adaptions into new standards of procedure is a review of existing governance practices and the documentation which supports them.

“At a time when boards can measure the full range of financial performance metrics, updating club governing documents is a primary board responsibility,” noted Henry DeLozier.  “Board room succession planning must be formalized to prepare clubs for the inevitable downturn from record high utilization.”

In considering the nearly overnight adoption of technology tools to enable remote meetings and board-level deliberations, partner Michael Gregory noted a substantial increase in the use of technology tools that go beyond virtual Zoom meetings.  “The pandemic has allowed clubs to test online voting,” he explained.  “For many clubs, once things return to normal, their bylaws won’t allow for the continued execution of online voting unless they make changes.”

“We have seen the adoption and implementation of online voting to be a huge success for the clubs who have tried it for the first time,” said Gregory. “Members love it, it’s easy, it’s convenient, it leads to higher participation from the membership, and many clubs are in the process of changing their governing documents to allow for online voting as a result.”  The challenges and opportunities of employing online voting are detailed in our piece on taking club elections digital, which features a downloadable resource that can be shared among club boards.

5. In human resources, expect to see deeper reevaluations of compensation structures and employee value propositions

Weighing in from across the pond, Rob Hill, partner and managing director of GGA’s EMEA office in Dublin, predicts that club leaders will face bigger challenges in human resources throughout the remainder of 2021.

The first of three particular items he called out is a reevaluation of compensation.  “Making decisions about employee pay is among the biggest challenges facing club leaders in the wake of the coronavirus shutdown,” stated Hill. “As they begin compensation planning for the rest of the year and into 2022, these leaders not only have to consider pay levels, but also the suitability of their mission and operating model to thrive in a post-pandemic world.”

Citing his recent experiences in the European market, Hill shared that club leaders are challenged with finding new ways to operate smarter and more efficiently, while also looking for innovative ways to implement sturdy, low-cost solutions that their employees will love.  Which leads to his second point, that there will be a renewed emphasis on what employees love and how clubs, as employers, can provide an enhanced value proposition for their employees.

“As employees get back to work onsite, employers are finding that what their people value from the employment relationship has changed,” Hill explained.  “Where pay has been viewed as largely transactional in the past, clubs may need to provide new types of benefits, especially programs that provide more flexibility, financial security, and empowerment to retain and motivate their people.”

Lastly, there is likely to be considerable movement of talent over the coming year brought on by employees’ new work-life ambitions and financial imperatives, said Hill, “As demand for their skills and experience grows, the very best talent will seek out employers that demonstrate they view employees not as costs but as assets and reflect this in their approach to compensation.”

Recalling our start-of-year prediction that the movement of people and relocation of companies will reshape markets, partner Craig Johnston added, “The relocation of people continues to be a prominent trend and one that is likely to continue in the second half of the year.”  For club employers, it’s not just the changing physical locations which impact the cost and supply of labor, but also the expectations of employees as they seek out competitive new roles and work experiences.

6. The repurposing and reimagining of club facilities, amenities, and member-use areas will continue

The pandemic pushed to the fore the need for clubs to adapt their facilities to match changes in the ways members use and enjoy their clubs.  A combination of practical evolutions for health and safety and circumstantial evolutions drawn from widespread ability for members to work remotely created increased desire for clubs to offer more casual outdoor dining options and spaces to enable members to conduct work while at the club.

Partner Stephen Johnston believes these sentiments will continue to near-term facility improvements at clubs.  “With more flexibility in the workplace and members working from home periodically, there will be a need at the club for members to do work or take calls before their tee time or their lunch date,” he said.  “It has been evident for some time that members generally prefer to enjoy outdoor dining and since, throughout the pandemic, it has become apparent that guests draw greater comfort in outdoor experiences, I see a greater demand for outside patio and food and beverage service.”

As society begins to reopen and communities begin to stabilize, time can only tell precisely how clubs will continue to evolve their operations, whether that be scaling back pandemic-relevant operations or doubling-down on new services and efficiencies.  Evident in our work with clients are significant efforts to reorganize club leaders, reevaluate operations, and retool plans for a successful future in the new normal.  Here are a few highlights of efforts clubs are making for the next normal:

 

  • Reinvigoration of governance processes and engagement of leaders to ensure alignment between boards and club strategic plans.
  • Renewed surveying of members to keep a pulse on how sentiments have changed from pre-pandemic, during pandemic, and currently as communities stabilize.
  • Enhanced adoption and application of electronic voting as clubs reevaluate membership structures, governing documents, and operating policies amidst “displaced” members.
  • Reconfiguring of budgets, capital plans, and long-range financial models.
  • Refinement and advancement of membership marketing strategies, tactics, and materials.
  • Tightening relationships between facility planning, capital improvements, and member communications campaigns.

Executive Search: General Manager at Mount Vernon Country Club (FILLED)

Mount Vernon Country Club logo

GENERAL MANAGER
MOUNT VERNON COUNTRY CLUB
Alexandria, VA

The Club

Founded in 1961, Mount Vernon Country Club is a member-owned golf and country club in Alexandria, Virginia, located 19 miles from Washington, D.C. The Club features an 18-hole championship golf course with work from golf course designers Russell Roberts, Ed Ault, and most recently, Bill Love. The course winds its way through the original forest of George Washington’s Mount Vernon farm and is enhanced by the presence of Dogue Creek, a Potomac River Chesapeake tidal tributary which lends a water hazard challenge on 14 of Mount Vernon’s 18 holes.

Mount Vernon Club is a family-friendly environment primarily focused on golf and dining. The Club offers five distinct food and beverage locations for Member’s enjoyment. The pool complex features a pool and the Barracuda Grill. The Clubhouse consists of the administrative offices, kitchen, member dining areas, lounge and banquet facilities. The Club currently benefits from a full membership with a growing wait list.

Mount Vernon Country Club Overview:

  • 700 Members (Golf: 475, Other: 225)
  • Initiation Fee (Resident Member Golf: $32,000)
  • Annual Dues (Golf: $7,068 and Capital Dues $1,236)
  • $8.30M Gross volume
  • $3.70M Annual dues
  • $2.30M F&B volume
  • $3.30M Gross payroll
  • 120 Employees in-season; 90 off-season
  • 9 Board members

The General Manager Position

The General Manager reports to the Board and coordinates with the President of the Board on a regular basis. The General Manager implements the policies established by the Board of Directors and the Club’s bylaws. He/she develops operational policies and is responsible for the creation and implementation of standard operating procedures for all areas of the club. This includes the preparation of the annual operating and capital budgets and management of operations to attain the desired results.

The General Manager coordinates all management functions and works in concert with committee chairs to assist in the development of proposed policies, programs, events, etc.

The General Manager is the lead coordinator of programming and development of synergy among all departments. Overseeing the internal and external marketing strategies for membership growth and member engagement is a critical part of the position. The General Manager will work with the Board to develop the current long- range plan which will include significant upgrades to the golf course and amenities.

The General Manager should have a strong presence and seek to be highly visible to the membership and staff. The General Manager sets the tone for consistently treating members with first class hospitality and is responsible for communicating these expectations to the entire staff.

Important Individual Characteristics:

  • A naturally enthusiastic personality and passion for the club management profession.
  • A natural leadership style which promotes staff and membership engagement and camaraderie.
  • Ability to act as a thought partner with the board and committees.
  • The ability to communicate effectively, both verbally and in writing.
  • Disciplined follow-through to ensure the vision and goals of the Club come to fruition.
  • Ability to cultivate a high-level of member services and satisfaction.
  • Possesses a strong understanding of top-notch food and beverage experiences for Club members and guests.
  • Effective fiscal management through delivery of actual operational and capital results in alignment with approved budgets.
  • Maintains a high level of visibility to members and staff as the face of the Club.
  • Understands the importance of digital communication and can utilize web and social media tools to communicate with the staff and membership.
  • Ability to develop a dedicated team with a shared vision.

Candidate Qualifications

  • A minimum of 5 years of progressive leadership and management experience in a private club environment. Current Assistant General Managers or Clubhouse Managers at well-recognized clubs, with verifiable records of achievement will also be considered.
  • A Bachelor’s Degree from an accredited college or university, preferably in Hospitality Management or Business.
  • Certified Club Manager (CCM) designation preferred.

Note: A pre-employment drug screen and background check will be required. The position is available August 1, 2021.

Salary & Benefits

Salary is open and commensurate with qualifications and experience. The Club offers an excellent bonus and benefit package.

Inquiries

Interested candidates should submit résumés along with a detailed cover letter which addresses the qualifications and describes your alignment/experience with the prescribed position by Friday, June 25, 2021.

Documents must be saved and emailed in Word or PDF format (save as “Last Name, First Name, Mount Vernon GM Cover Letter” and “Last Name, First Name, Mount Vernon GM Resume”) respectively to: execsearchus@ggapartners.com. Please email résumé with references.

 

Lead Search Executive

Patrick DeLozier
Managing Director
GGA Partners™
843.707.5210
patrick.delozier@ggapartners.com

 

For more information about Mount Vernon Country Club, please visit www.mountvernoncc.org.

Executive Search: Assistant GM at The Minikahda Club

ASSISTANT GENERAL MANAGER
THE MINIKAHDA CLUB
Minneapolis, MN

The Club

Located minutes from downtown Minneapolis, MN, The Minikahda Club is much more than a collection of amenities. The Club experience is focused on providing superior social and recreational experiences based on the values of family, fellowship, integrity, respect, and inclusiveness.

Founded in 1898, The Minikahda Club is the oldest country club west of the Mississippi and a premier club in the region. The City of Minneapolis has grown up around Minikahda. A group of young picnickers were so impressed by the spot they found atop a hill overlooking Lake Bde Maka Ska, they acquired the land and set out to form a club for social functions and golf. The name Minikahda comes from the Dakotah, a combination of two words meaning, “by the side of the water.” The Club logo, in fact, depicts a Native American shield, similar to the artifact framed in the Clubhouse.

The Minikahda Club is a year-round full-service club with a vast offering of social, dining and sport activities. The Club has approximately 1,275 members, comprised of approximately 475 families and a single class of membership. From a financial standpoint, the Club is debt-free, has a substantial reserve fund, a waiting list for membership and is well positioned for success.

The historic Donald Ross designed golf course has played host to a number of major events including the 1916 US Open, the 1927 US Amateur, the Walker Cup in 1957, the Women’s Amateur in 1988, the Curtis Cup in 1998, and the US Senior Amateur in 2017. The course is ranked among the best in the state by Golf Digest and was ranked #102 in Golfweek’s Top classic courses in 2020.

In 2018, the classic Ross designed golf course was re-grassed, and the golf shop was replaced with a new building that provides a year-round practice facility. A modernized pool snack bar and a new lakeside bar on the second floor of the Clubhouse was also added at the same time.  Currently, the Club is in the process of developing a long-term strategic and facilities master plan.

Members enjoy a variety of racket sports including tennis and paddle tennis. The tennis and paddle tennis programs are designed to appeal to newcomers and seasoned players alike.  A full calendar of clinics, mixers, and socials provides ample opportunities to meet new players and make new friends.

The pool is a very popular member amenity enjoyed by all from Memorial Day to Labor Day. Located on the edge of a hill with breathtaking views of Lake Bde Maka Ska and downtown Minneapolis, members enjoy swimming programs, relaxation and dining poolside.

At the heart of Minikahda is the beloved 60,000 square foot Clubhouse.  The Club offers multiple dining rooms for every gathering, from the formal Dining Room and intimate patio overlooking Lake Bde Maka Ska, to a family friendly Grille as well as 1898, the newly added adult-only bar with beautiful views of the lake and downtown Minneapolis. Multiple outdoor terraces and a deck with spectacular views highlighted by incredible cuisine prepared by our culinary team are all part of why Minikahda members and guests consider The Minikahda Club one of the best places to dine in the Twin Cities.  The Club also boasts a beautiful ballroom for significant life or member events. Indoors, outdoors, big or small, whatever the need, we are humbled and honored to serve our members and guests.

The Minikahda Club Overview:

  • 1,275 Members (approximately 475 families)
  • Initiation Fee: $75,000
  • Annual Dues: $10,000
  • $10.5M Gross Volume
  • $5.5M Annual Dues
  • $5.2M Gross Payroll
  • $3.2M F&B Volume pre-COVID-19
  • Peak Season: 300 Employees; Off-season: 120 Employees
  • 13 Board Members
  • Average age of members is 52

The Assistant General Manager Position

The Assistant General Manager is ultimately responsible for all clubhouse, food and beverage, aquatics, and facilities operations daily, including the general housekeeping over these areas. The Assistant General Manager is responsible for all aspects of the operation in the absence of the General Manager/COO and performs specific tasks as requested.

This managerial position works closely with, and reports directly to, the General Manager/COO, and provides quality leadership and contributes to the positive atmosphere of the Club and associated operations. He/she will also prepare annual department budgets in concert with the GM/COO.

The AGM will enhance the “club culture” and is responsible for the dissemination of hospitality, friendliness, and goodwill among members, guests and staff. His/her goal is always to help members and guests enjoy the facilities and events of the Club. In addition to building relationships with Club members, guests, and employees, he or she provides support to the respective committees and advisory groups as well. Being the “public face” of these operations with a hands-on approach and an understanding that full member and staff engagement is critical to success in this position.

The AGM consistently provides anticipatory hospitality along with superb dining and other food and beverage experiences for the Club’s membership and their guests. Alignment with the Executive Chef and Food & Beverage Director is very important to this position to ensure collaborative, innovative, harmonious relationships between front and back of house operations.

Primary Responsibilities

Member Services:

  • Consistent sincere and significant engagement of members, highly visible to members and staff in the dining areas of the club is of the utmost importance. The AGM is ultimately responsible to ensure that all member dining and club events are well-conceived and executed along with all amenities.
  • Provide quality leadership in a positive and upbeat manner for the members, guests and staff.
  • Create and maintain a first-class service culture throughout the club campus and its amenities.
  • Address and resolve all member and guest complaints and suggestions, general service, employee attitude, maintenance, and presentation of the clubhouse operations.

Employee Relations:

  • Oversee the recruiting, hiring and development of clubhouse and various food service venue personnel.
  • Oversee ongoing training programs complete with up-to-date training manuals to ensure exceptional service in all parts of the club’s operation.
  • Provides for training and future development of all subordinate managers and supervisors subject to budget approval by the General Manager/COO. Instill the concept of being “team players” in all employees. Continue to coach, counsel, and evaluate departmental staff.
  • Ensures that a positive spirit and healthy work environment exists throughout the club operations, one that is free of safety risks and all forms of employee harassment.
  • Maintain an effective communication program where employees are treated in a fair, structured and consistent manner.
  • Function as an administrative and communication link between departments in the club.
  • Guarantee that all clubhouse employees are regularly trained and certified in areas that help guard the safety and well-being of our members, guests and other employees including, but not limited to responsible alcohol service, safe food handling, etc.
  • Help to facilitate a team environment with morale, high ethical standards and efficient use of resources to position The Minikahda Club to be a preferred employer of choice in the community.

Financial Management:

  • Works jointly with the Controller and General Manager/COO to prepare the annual operating and capital budgets for all clubhouse and service operations, assists in managing and controlling the operations to attain the desired results.
  • Monitors the budget each week/month and directs the taking of corrective action as necessary to assure that the budgeted goals are attained.
  • Provides input to all clubhouse and service personnel regarding annual budgets, capital spending plans, fiscal controls and operational guidelines.
  • Responsible for all labor cost payouts and maintains them within the constraints of the budget and through close coordination and with approval from the General Manager/COO and Controller.
  • Monitors payroll records to control overtime and maintain labor costs within budgetary guidelines.
  • Supervises the purchasing, receiving, safekeeping and disbursement of operating supplies and equipment to maximize quality and profitability.

Personnel Management:

  • Displays very hands-on approach and leads the staff by example. Must be approachable to staff, members and guests.
  • Assists the General Manager/COO in developing and implementing long-range (strategic) and annual (business) plans, operating reports, forecasts and budgets.
  • Works with Human Resources to develop long term staffing needs for area of responsibility.
  • Responsible for the hiring, discipline, termination and documentation of all clubhouse and service staff.
  • Reviews all accidents, works with HR and Safety Committee in completing accidents reports and implementing improved procedures.
  • Attends meetings of senior management and carries out directives because of these meetings and any other requests of the General Manager in a timely manner.
  • Serves as an ad-hoc member of appropriate club committees and advisory groups.
  • A warm personality, a sense of humor and the ability to work effectively with all levels of the internal staff and members.
  • Works with Executive Chef, Food & Beverage Director and others to develop P&L statements prior to each event, makes appropriate notes following events and files information for future use.
  • Works with Executive Chef on menu development.
  • Works with the F&B Team to organize and market special club events.
  • Furthers his/her own continued development as a club management professional as a member of CMAA. With the assistance and approval of the General Manager/COO participates in appropriate seminars/training programs, thereby enhancing his/her value and quality of services to The Minikahda Club.

Operational Responsibilities:

  • Understands and abides by The Minikahda Club policies and departmental procedures. Suggests changes and may direct the implementation of change.
  • Provides content for and manages communications and marketing information for department.
  • Assures that the Clubhouse operations and campus venues are run in accordance with all applicable local, state and federal laws.
  • Disseminates information effectively and coordinates activities between departments on a timely basis.
  • Keeps the General Manager/COO informed of all potential problems and activities related to the smooth operation of the clubhouse and other food service venues.
  • Oversees inventory management throughout departments and completes a periodic china, glass and silver inventory to maintain par levels.
  • Coordinates and approves all entertainment in consultation with General Manager/COO and others.
  • A sharp eye for detail in the overall management of the operation.
  • Responsible for regularly reporting of performance and financial data, i.e. weekly report to General Manager/COO.

Direct Reports

Executive Chef, Food & Beverage Director, Catering Director, Member Engagement Director, Pool, Locker Room, Housekeeping and Valet Teams.

Candidate Qualifications

  • A minimum of 5 years of progressive leadership and management experience in a private club environment.
  • A Bachelor’s Degree from an accredited college or university, preferably in Hospitality Management or Business.
  • Certified Club Manager (CCM) or in active pursuit of designation preferred.

Note: A pre-employment drug screen and background check will be required. The position is available immediately.

Salary & Benefits

Salary is open and commensurate with qualifications and experience. The Club offers an excellent bonus and benefit package.

Inquiries

Interested candidates should submit résumés along with a detailed cover letter which addresses the qualifications and describes your alignment/experience with the prescribed position by Wednesday, June 23, 2021.

Documents must be saved and emailed in Word or PDF format (save as “Last Name, First Name, Minikahda Club AGM Cover Letter” and “Last Name, First Name, Minikahda Club AGM Resume”) respectively to: execsearchus@ggapartners.com. Please email résumé with references.

 

Lead Search Executive

Patrick DeLozier
Managing Director
GGA Partners™
(501) 258-2911
patrick.delozier@ggapartners.com

 

For more information about The Minikahda Club, please visit www.minikahdaclub.org.

 

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