It’s great to get time away from work for a period of time to recharge and reflect on life. You see your family growing up, getting married, buying houses and changing jobs. And as I look at my little sister finishing school, and entering into the big bad world it’s funny to think back on where I was at 16 or 17 years old. I remember always telling my parents “I want to be a golfer” and the response was always “That’s great….. but what are you really going to do”. It’s hard to picture a sport making your child’s livelihood, but at that age, I was single minded, in reality, there was nothing else! Nothing else I loved anyway, and I could never see myself having a desk job or a normal 9-5 working day.
Although my ultimate dream of playing for a living never materialised, looking back on over 10 years in the golf industry I must say it has been a kind one to me. And while most people would look at me and say that’s all well and good, you live in Dubai, work at one of the best golf schools in the world, why would you not love what you do? Well, my answer to that is a simple one…… I don’t just love it now, I have always loved being in the golf industry!
My start was humble beginnings, my first ever shots were on a local pitch and putt course, and the first time I played real golf was on a 9 hole course close to my grandmothers, Navan Golf Club. at the time Navan was effectively running from a porta cabin, but that 9 hole course turned out to be where I would spend every available minute from the age of 10 until I turned professional at 18 years old.
People at Navan golf club went out of their way to help me, from our Junior Co-ordinator who spent years and so many hours of his own personal time looking after a growing (and demanding) junior section, to our local club professional who thought me how to change grips and improve my own game. These people gave up their time (not just for me but for many of us), simply because they loved the game, they loved the club, and they loved seeing us enjoying it and having fun. I think it’s often easy for those in the golf industry to forget how lucky we are being involved in a sport we love, it’s also easy to forget all those people who have helped us along the way!!
As I mentioned earlier golf has been kind to me, the sport I love has given me the opportunity to travel the world, live in a number of different countries, and meet some amazing people. Over the last 10 years, I have worked through a number of jobs in a number of places, from collecting golf balls on a range to managing golf clubs, in fact in one way or another I have probably covered most jobs within the golf industry over the years!! And yes while no matter what job I have been in there has always and will always be good and bad days, without a doubt I am thankful to be around the sport I love day in day out.
So for those who are out there working in the golf industry, looking at the short term satisfaction of their job, simply thinking they are not being paid enough for what they do, just realise how lucky you really are! This industry is limitless, sure you need to work hard and possibly have a little luck along the way, but no matter what job you are in you will probably need that!
For me, I have one very simple way of thinking…… If I’m golfing…… I’m happy…..