My Five Values of Golf Course Agronomy:
Aesthetic Appeal: Amongst the attributes which make golf a unique game is the idea that the game is played in a variety of visually stimulating settings out-of-doors. As a golf course agronomist, it is my responsibility to ensure that the golf course is presented in the manner best emphasizing the aesthetic attributes of the golf course design, the season, and the region in which the course is located within the specification of the membership or customer base. All golf course accessories and features are to maintained with the utmost in rigor and detail on a day-to-day basis.
Ecologically Sound: Maintaining a playing surface for golf requires the golf course agronomist to understand the ecologic forces and factors. Golf requires the plant to function at mere fractions of it’s full capacity for growth and as such, the golf course agronomist must remain vigilant to assist the plant in surviving the stresses of climate, use and maintenance. Furthermore, the golf course does not exist in an ecologic vacuum and precise consideration must be given to the impact that all maintenance practices have not only in the short term, but in the long term and with the perspective of the broad ecological picture.
Economically Driven: The economic challenges faced in the golf industry cannot be ignored even in the best of economic climates. As a golf course agronomist I am responsible for the largest cost-driver in the game – the golf course. All decisions made regarding maintenance and presentation of the golf course must consider that the economic cost will ultimately fall on the participants of the game; our membership and customers. While the most apparent cost is financial, it is important to acknowledge that time is also a valuable resource that our members and customers give us. As golf course agronomist, it is my responsibility to ensure that the members and customers are getting the expected return on their investments of time and money, and where possible to exceed those expectations at all times.
Ethically Managed: The degree of freedom afforded to golf course agronomists over management of staff, budget and fixed assets requires a sound ethical base to protect all parties involved. The position requires the utmost in personal integrity. I believe in transparency of decision making to all interested stakeholders. I believe the staff which I manage is to be treated with the utmost in respect, as their tasks are important to the success of the operation. I believe that leadership is first and foremost a position of service to those that follow. It is my responsibility to provide the necessary resources to make those I am leading successful and my responsibility for any lack of success.
Playability: The golf course is primarily a field of play. The appeal of playability is of the utmost importance as the maintenance of the golf course is the primary connection between the golfer and the golf course. As golf course agronomist, it my responsibility to understand the design intent of every golf feature and to maintain those features to maximize their intent.