You have probably come across numerous scenes in movies where people talk business while playing golf. Those are not documentaries but are definitely based on true events. For many, golf seems to be much more than a game and an important part of professional life.
Golf is a mind game
If you thought that golf was just hitting a ball to get it into a hole, think again. This game can really put your mind to work and have you employ all of your mental skills on both planning the moves and controlling the body. Anyone playing with you will be able to recognize this ability as the chances are that they know themselves what it takes.
The Display of character
Rather than only showing off your mental abilities, a game of golf will put your character on the display. Those you play with will clearly see what type of mood you are when you approach difficult situations, whether you are ambitious, how well you operate under stress, and how well do you accept losses. Not only that, but it will also give you an insight into the character of others. You will know exactly who you are dealing with and how to approach them. Business often involves challenging those you work with and knowing their temper can help you choose the right moment and approach to dominate.
Are you new to the industry, or simply new to the area? Visiting a golf club will help you spot the right people to start building your network. If you show up alone, you could be paired with other random people out of who, some may be valuable contacts. Also, just mingling at the club could help you meet the people and arrange a game of golf for a better acquaintance. You don’t have to focus on people from your industry, you never know when a friend can pass on valuable information and open new opportunities for you.
Taking the edge of meetings
Business meetings can be very stressful. Even if they are done over lunch, it can often happen that the worries won’t let you eat. On the other hand, if you take that meeting to a golf course, which is in its essence a beautiful piece of nature and engage in a game of golf, you will with no doubt blow off some steam. Golf has therapeutic properties and it is an excellent tool to relieve stress. You can focus on your perfect golf swing and casually discuss other matters. This can help any meeting run smoothly.
Building strong relationships
It is one thing respecting those you work with on a professional level, however, it is completely different to have respect for them on a personal level. Meetings, seminars, and conferences usually only allow a short and limited amount of time spent in one-on-one conversations. Playing golf, on the other hand, ensures you get a couple of hours of privacy with other players. This can help you build relationships on a personal level which can only take the respect they have for you as a business person to the next level.
Makes conversations run smoothly
With golf as a central activity of the time you spend with your professionally-significant others, you will have something to focus on, and let the rest of the conversation run smoothly. This is an excellent opportunity to catch those you play with off-guard and in a good mood. You can use this time not only to strengthen the relationships but also to ask for favors with a more favourable outcome. Also, the sole fact that they accepted to play with you means that they are open to you and give you a green light to approach them. Be sure to return the favours when you can and not abuse people’s willingness to help you.
Golf seems to be unique in its ability to create an atmosphere which requires focus and full engagement but also allows enough time for relaxation and casual conversation. You should use this time to demonstrate your skills and take part in conversations which can help you achieve your professional goals, build a network of people, and strong links within that network. Remember, regardless of what you do, people are your greatest asset and your biggest resource.