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Procrastination Kills Careers...

Jim McLoughlin


As you remember, last week's blog message profiled the definitive steps superintendents can take to survive further downturns in the economy.


The only way superintendents can get hurt when the economy heads further south is by failing to act on the guidelines presented in last week's blog on a timely basis -- which should be implemented appropriately ahead of time but rarely are.


Unfortunately, career-planning procrastination appears to be in the DNA of most male golf course superintendents. (FYI: There is no evidence yet available that suggests female superintendents procrastinate.) For example:


  1. Roughly 90% of the hundreds of resumes that I have been asked to review through the years that should be prepared six months before there is a need for them have been received one to three weeks prior to these candidates applying for a vacant job. Last minute resume preparation produces an inferior product that negates job opportunity.


  2. Knowing that roughly 75% of all job interviews are assigned to candidates with career web sites -- less than one in five superintendents applying for their first job has a 'ready-to-use' career web site today.


    Applying for a job today without a career web site is the equivalent of jumping out of a plane without a parachute.


  3. The vast majority of job applicants procrastinate in preparing their plans of action to the point where they don'y hand them in until they walk into the interview room, which is too late to be reviewed by search committees and, accordingly, terminates their candidacies. 


  4. More to the point at hand, most superintendents are slow taking the lead to voluntarily cut their operating budgets to keep pace with the economy. (See Dec 2nd blog.) Rather, they wait for their employers to mandate cuts thereby forsaking any leadership role and being put on the defensive - a position no superintendent should allow himself to be put in.


    Superintendents are too often blind to the high price they pay when failing to address employment issues on a timely basis. Consequently, job security is threatened; access to new jobs is denied; anxiety mounts; and careers stall.


What can superintendents do to avoid the pitfalls of procrastination?


Prepare an infallible 'off-season check-list'. On this list place the following planning items:

  1. the question asking where they want their careers to be in five years;
  2. prepare or update resume;
  3. prepare or update career web site;
  4. prepare or update maintenance program web site (see Oct. 2nd blog); and,
  5. don't forget to buy flowers for your wife on Valentine's Day!


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