The pro-golfer approach to business

I played my best golf during college. On Tuesdays and Thursdays, my last class of the day was Governmental Accounting. I’d look over at my friend and with one nod to each other, we knew—there was no way we could sit through a lecture when the weather was so nice outside. So, we’d get up and leave for the golf course before class started.

Even when I was playing my best golf, I was a hack. I was self-taught, “gripping and ripping.” Don’t get me wrong, I practiced. I’d go out on the driving range and hit balls. Or we’d practice on the putting green by betting each other a dollar per hole for whoever sank a putt with fewer strokes.

But when it was time to drive the ball, I’d stand on the tee box, take a swing and see how far it went. I had no idea how professional golfers planned their shots; I’d never had a coach. I was trying to learn on my own.

What I learned later in life is that the professional’s approach is completely different. And although it made complete sense when it was explained to me, I doubt it would have ever occurred to me on my own.

Golfers begin every hole with a careful analysis. First they examine where the hole is on the green and decide on which side of the hole they want their ball to land on the green. Based on that, they decide from where they want to make their approach shot. This tells them where they want their ball to land on the fairway when they hit their drive shot.

They start each hole with an outlined, step-by-step plan. Then they can make adjustments along the way to minimize the steps they must take.

Unfortunately, few business owners take this same approach. They act the way I did when I was learning to play golf—just grabbing a club and swinging it as hard as I could.

Too many beginning info-marketers just grab a tactic and swing as hard as they can. They learn copywriting and decide they’ll be a professional copywriter. They learn about social media and decide they’ll become a social media consultant. Or they learn about (you fill in the blank) and decide to jump into that. They start with the tool and try to use it to its fullest, without having any idea what they want that tool to do for them.

This is one of the areas on which I spend the most time with coaching clients. Often they have dozens of great ideas they’d love to implement. They come to me for help to get them done.

I find it’s extremely productive to invest time into analyzing what they really want out of life, and then reviewing each of their ideas and choosing one, two or three of the ideas that are most likely going to get them where they want to go. Sort of like the golfer who decides first where he wants to land on the green and then instantly knows which club he needs to use on the drive, even if it’s two or three shots away from the green.

With a clear goal of where you want to be, you will know which tool to use to speed up your trip. Now here’s the interesting part: These goals are unique for everyone.

Sure, everyone wants the freedom that more money provides, but I’ve found that money isn’t the largest motivator for most people. For most, enough is enough. They want their businesses to fulfill other areas of their lives. For some, it’s creating something significant, leaving a legacy. For others, it’s giving back. And for some, it’s getting recognition as an innovator.

That’s why it’s so important to clarify why you are building your business and what you want your life to look and feel like once you’ve built the business of your dreams. So many of us chase other people’s dreams, buying their products and following their instructions. We figure out later that we were chasing what someone else wanted rather than our own goals.

If you are jumping from one program to another and haven’t discovered something that fits, you are going about it completely backward. That should demonstrate to you that it’s time for a coach, someone who has the experience to help you identify what’s important to you and to help you design the shortest possible path to achieving it.

For more information about coaching and consulting services and availability call Suzanne at 850/222-6000. If you haven’t watched it yet, then you owe it to yourself to dive into my free webinar, Your Money Machine Blueprint webinar at

Best wishes,

About Robert Skrob

The problem with subscription membership programs is that members quit, I fix that problem. For more than 20-years I have specialized in direct response marketing for member recruitment, retention and ascension in diverse subscription members environments including non-profit associations, for-profit publishers/coaching, subscriptions and SAAS companies. For an evaluation of your current churn rate and how I can improve it, contact me here. I discover there are often two or three quick wins you can implement within a week to lower churn immediately, let’s talk about your quick wins.
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