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How To Avoid The Bad Foot

I hate bad shoes.  My brother Mike was almost killed by bad shoes.  His after school job selling women's shoes sometimes required him to force size 4 high heels onto size 12 hooves.  One simple detonation could fling shrapnel and clouds of compressed foot gas all over the mall.        I hate bad socks more than bad shoes.  I was almost killed by bad socks.  I remember a particularly grueling 12 mile ruck march in the Ozarks--complete with howling winds and snow--when I ran out of moleskin at m

Randy Wilson

Randy Wilson

 

Best Communication Opportunity: A “Maintenance Program” Web Site

Yes, there is a second undiscovered web site opportunity that is potentially more valuable to a superintendent than the well-documented highly respected personal career web site. Properly prepared, managed and updated on regular basis, a "maintenance program" (MP) web site's attainable objectives are to promote the superintendents' "brand" in the following ways: To educate course officials/players to the basic elements of the maintenance program.   To educate re: the role and job descript

Jim McLoughlin

Jim McLoughlin

 

How Quick Time Flies

It feels just like yesterday that I stepped foot on Irish soil prepared for the journey ahead. That was almost five months ago. I have less than a week left in Ireland and two days left at work. At every new journey I think time will turn just right, but it always goes too fast. My time at Mount Juliet has been great. In this final week I keep remembering my time here.      So far this week I have mowed greens, tees and fairways. I also helped spray greens and mowed some rough with the TurfC

Peter Braun

Peter Braun

 

Testing....Testing?!

Every fall, the floodgates open and the soil tests come rolling in. I love soil tests. Probably because I actually use them for what they are intended for. Information. Not sales.    A long time ago when I decided to form a business around testing soil and consulting based on those soil tests, a ton of people said that I was crazy. Charge for something that the fertilizer industry usually gives away for free? It made no sense.    When I exposed bad testing or perhaps better said, cheaper tes

Dave Wilber

Dave Wilber

 

Why Superintendents Are Denied Written Contracts

Two totally independent national surveys that mutually support each other's findings tell a frightful story about the careers/lives of golf course superintendents:   FIRST SURVEY:  Indicates that only about 20% of golf course superintendents enjoy the security of a written employment contract, while roughly 80% of PGA and CMAA members enjoy this privilege.   Few people in the world give thought to the devastation wrought upon families when a superintendent is summarily dismissed - which is n

Jim McLoughlin

Jim McLoughlin

 

National Ploughing Championships

Ploughing, or plowing for us Americans, has huge competitions all over Europe. The Ploughing Championships in Ireland is the largest outdoor agricultural exhibition and show attracting over 200,000 for 3-day event. Wow, 200,000 people attend an event for ploughing. I had to see this. Yesterday I went to Ratheniska, Stradbally, Co. Laois to see what the hype was about. 82,000 people visited yesterday and it was just announced that 124,500 people attend today bringing the 2-day total to 206,500! O

Peter Braun

Peter Braun

 

Do unto otters...

I stumbled across an interesting question on Twitter a while back. Posed by consultant John Bladon, it read:     It was an interesting post to me for a few reasons. I know that business is business, but I always liked to think that on the turf side of things our shared trials and tribulations overshadow our differences. I love that when I ask a question on TurfNet or hit up a local super at the conference seminar there is no hesitation with an answer... turf guys just want to help.   Alas

Paul MacCormack

Paul MacCormack

Website Series: Taking the Right First Step

Website Series: Taking the Right First Step

This is the first in a series on building career websites for the turf industry. We will cover all aspects of content, page building, imagery, and more. Let's start with some facts. There is still a bottleneck at the top of our industry in trying to attain a Superintendent position at a quality club. If you are applying blind to a position where you have no connections to the club at all, a standard cover letter and resume will not get it done. With dozens upon dozens of applicants, you hav

Matt Leverich

Matt Leverich

 

Fall Cultural Practices

Fall comes earlier in Ireland. Leaves are changing and falling, but temperatures are still warm and dry. Not that I'm complaining, but I associate fall with cool, crisp mornings and colorful leaves. On the golf course fall is a time for turf recovery. This is done through aerification. Fall aerification gets the grass ready for the winter months by opening up the root zone to allow air and water to reach the roots and encourage root growth. One of the drawbacks to school is that I have always mi

Peter Braun

Peter Braun

 

Caution: A Job Offer Does Not Seal The Deal

The blog series now switches to Contract Negotiations.   Too many job applicants once told by the search committee that they are being offered a job drop their guard thinking the task of pursuing their next job has been successfully concluded.   Unfortunately, this is a fundamental mistake because receiving a job offer is simply an 'invitation' to be the first or next in line to have the opportunity to negotiate an employment agreement.   Candidates should realize when offered a job that

Jim McLoughlin

Jim McLoughlin

 

Chainsaw Safety--Guaranteed!

With the recent high profile chainsaw accidents involving Greg Norman and Peter McCormick, it might be time for Mickey McCord to devote an entire training series to chainsaw safety.  While we're waiting on Mickey, I'll reveal the Three Rules of Absolute Chainsaw Safety.   My entire GCS career was based on the chainsaw.  The only golf courses that would hire me were the courses in trouble and they were in trouble because of trees--and bad business practices--but mostly trees.  The previous supe

Randy Wilson

Randy Wilson

 

Cat Calendar Conspiracy

A couple of years ago, we released a short film about the insidious movement to replace the TurfNet Dog Calendar--The First and Still Champion Golf Course Dog Calendar--with a more diversified version.   Our film was suppressed by a relentless campaign of modern PC brainwashing, using guilt to claim less fortunate animals on the golf course were being ignored.   Quote . . . a conspiracy to force TurfNet to add cats Brian Nettz led a push for the inclusion of goats, Mark Hoban advocated a

Randy Wilson

Randy Wilson

 

Plan to WIN, or you WILL lose...

What Is The Best Way To Plan To Win?   Simply stated, the best way to plan to "win" is to out-prepare the field of candidate competitors. The few that do get job offers.   Earlier blog messages in this series that addressed matters such as the best use of cover letters, stress-free interviews and submitting job applications electronically should be reviewed.   FYI: Three of the more effective concepts that best exemplify commitments to excellence that separate winning candidates from the b

Jim McLoughlin

Jim McLoughlin

 

Change is Going to Happen

I've just realized that it has been over a month since my last post about working on the course. My parents visit took up 16 days with 8 days here and 8 days writing.  Then I went on a 3 day trip to the Uk and Croke Park. So I have had a busy month. One last note before I get to the course work. Yesterday I ran in the 1st ever endurance obstacle race in Ireland. The race was only a 5K but was tough. I had been training for the race since my parents left and I felt great. I ran the course in 20:2

Peter Braun

Peter Braun

 

Addressing The Delicate Salary Issue

Successful interviewing is all about continuing to take the initiative that started with the cover letter. (See July 2nd blog.)   Questions designed to help candidates take the initiative during job interviews:   Prior to an interview, does it help to practice job related Q&As (especially regarding salary issues) with family and associates?   Of course! Go to Google to find dozens of categories of questions traditionally exchanged at job interviews.   When is the best time to raise t

Jim McLoughlin

Jim McLoughlin

 

I Have Acquiesced

This is a confession:  I have been the curmudgeonly, gruff old guy relentlessly holding on to the traditional, classic elements of golf.  I have resisted the latest trends, marketing fads and new technology since the appearance of the golf cart.  I fought the insanity of growing bent in The South, battled real estate course design, azalea overdose and the maniacal pursuit of stripes, checkerboards and argyle patterns burnt into bermuda choking overseed in lines so straight that astronauts notice

Randy Wilson

Randy Wilson

 

American Football Hits Ireland and UK Visit

Ransomes Jacobsen, Bernhard Grinders, and Croke Park Classic made for a great trip. The trip came together with some help from Mike O'Keeffe, Jon Kiger, Jonathan Templar, and Gina Putnam. In February at GIS in Orlando Mike and Jon made some contacts at Bernhard that said a visit is a must see and that Ransomes Jacobsen is close enough to see on the same trip. It was decided to schedule the trip around the MP Series test day at Ransomes. This also worked out to be the time of the Croke Park Class

Peter Braun

Peter Braun

 

Life... in general

I recently had the good fortune of attending the movie The Giver with my oldest daughter, Maria. We had both read the book a couple of years back and were excited to see the show. Thankfully we were not disappointed. The story examines the basic human condition and how we go to extreme lengths to shield ourselves from pain and suffering. The lasting impact of this is that whenever we work hard to shelter ourselves from the pain of our emotions, we also end up cutting ourselves off from the best

Paul MacCormack

Paul MacCormack

Technology Time Management

Technology Time Management

Recently I have been working with the MetGCSA in rebuilding their online presence and ran across a great article from their award-winning Tee to Green publication archive. It deals with how technology has both saved and added time to the duties of the golf course superintendent. This started me thinking about the daily routine of today's superintendent. Due to my work I am almost always in front of a computer all day, every day. I see a new technological advancement as saving me time. But f

Matt Leverich

Matt Leverich

 

Focus Ahead – Not Behind – When Interviewing

Possibly, the two most consistent patterns I have noted through the years when participating in candidate interviews as a consultant to employing clubs have been: Candidates devote roughly 80% of their submitted documents and interview presentation times to focusing on their past job performances. Unfortunately, this leaves these same candidates only 20% of their interview time to effectively advise what they would do if selected for the vacant job; i.e.- the most vital information a search

Jim McLoughlin

Jim McLoughlin

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