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Networking through golf ...

Discussion in 'Anything goes' started by mike311gd, Sep 6, 2007.

  1. mike311gd

    mike311gd Active Member

    When I first got into the business, a commissioner of an collegiate athletic conference asked me if I played golf because he, his assistant and another co-worker needed a fourth. To which I replied that I never played before. He told me, "Man, you've really got to learn to play. That's how you make it in the business world."

    Two years later, I get a phone call from a contact, an owner of a small professional football league. He needs a fourth for tomorrow morning and wondered if I was available. The members include the head coach of the city's team and a former major-league manager -- and I am a big baseball fan, as some of you know. But again, I declined because I've never played before, saying, "I can't hold you guys up like that. ..."

    Has anyone ever had to decline an invitation like that before?

    And what's your take: Should every young journalist (or anyone, for that matter) learn to play golf just in case of business opportunities or even a cool offer like the aforementioned situation arises?

    (For the record, I am kicking myself tonight.)
  2. SixToe

    SixToe Active Member

    You have two examples of why you should take some lessons.

    If you like it and can play well enough to join a group, you're good to go. If you hack it around like a blindfolded man with a shovel, don't pursue it.

    Give it a try. Hitting the links can open a door for you.
  3. TwoGloves

    TwoGloves Active Member

    You'd be surprised what you can learn during a round of golf. Today, I played with one of the owners and two new players on the minor-league team I cover and it's a great way to get to know them away from work. P.S. Also played in a work-related outing once with an ATF agent. I joked when we were introduced that I hope I never meet him professionally. He looked at me like he wanted to shoot me. Five hours later, we shook hands as we left the last green and he smiled and said "I hope we never have to meet professionally." Like I said, great way to get to know people away from work.
  4. Jack_Kerouac

    Jack_Kerouac Member

    I would highly recommend taking lessons so that you don't have to turn down such invites in the future. As has been stated already, you'll form a bond with these people that you would never be able to in a traditional working environment, and you'll get tons more information from them in the future once you've bonded on the links.

    I've golfed courses I'd never be able to get onto on my own just because of who I was playing with. Great memories and great professional relationships can be forged in such a fashion.
  5. mike311gd

    mike311gd Active Member

    Would that require me to get goofy pants and a fat ass?

    Oh, Happy.
  6. SixToe

    SixToe Active Member

    You also can get a glimpse into a person's character on the golf course.

    Do they abide by the rules? Use a foot wedge? Go nuts if they miss a putt or get sullen if you sink a 20-footer?

    If they act like a butthead on a golf course then they probably will be a butthead in the office.
  7. BertoltBrecht

    BertoltBrecht Member

    As someone who plays golf and is a tremendous asshole, golf is not a verb. I fucking cringe when I hear this.

    Along those lines, learn the ettiquette of the game. The nice fucking owners others won't be very cordial if you step in their line and talk while they putt.

    Hope that helps.
  8. zeke12

    zeke12 Guest

    Fuck golf.

    As such.
  9. Angola!

    Angola! Guest

    I've never actually golfed with any sources, but just having knowledge of the game and seeing coaches on the course has helped me get to know them better.
    Gives you a chance to bullshit with them about something other than their jobs.
  10. Sxysprtswrtr

    Sxysprtswrtr Active Member

    You could have offered to drive around the cart and be the beer guy?
  11. mike311gd

    mike311gd Active Member

    My grandma said, "Do they need a caddy?"
  12. BertoltBrecht

    BertoltBrecht Member

    Happy: "Guess what grandma? I made the Professional Golfers Tour."

    Grandma: "That's lovely dear."
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