In Day 2 of the Sweet 16 at the Coeur d’Alene Resort (thanks Andy Mackimmie, PGA), the presenter for the Player Development Section Workshop shared a video I’d seen just one time before. It is not about golf, but it is very applicable to the working life and livelihood of the PGA golf professionals. Please take a moment to watch it (17 minutes) or check out the transcript.

“What do we do for a living? What exactly to the people watching this do every day? And I want to argue that what we do is we try to change everything. That we try to find a piece of the status quo — something that bothers us, something that needs to be improved, something that is itching to be changed — and we change it.”

The natural, self-preserving response (at least on a day-to-day basis) is to get into a rut, a routine. As golf professionals, we generally promote our students use a pre-shot routine, and that’s good. Another routine might be the behavior, thought process or “way of doing things” that got us where we are today. Again, that is good.

Unfortunately, that same status quo could be the “greatest enemy” of our future great. Holding on to the status quo (no matter how comfortable it might be) can become a lens that hampers how we see the world we “work in.” If we are so fixated on keeping the status quo, we are highly likely to miss opportunities to grow business, income, the bottom line of the facility, etc.

Being a Principled Change Agent

  • The world (including the micro-economic factors that surround my facility) is ever-changing, so sticking with the status quo is a slow death.
  • You can lead a positive change to move (even if it’s just inches) away from the status quo.
  • To be a change agent, you may only need 100 (maybe as little as 10) true fans of what you believe in!
  • Being satisfied with the status quo and celebrating the history/tradition of your facility or similar are not the same.
  • Leading your employer/your team in sticking to the core principles, core business purpose or core business why that built success is important, BUT not at the cost of being chained to the weight of the status quo that can hold the facility back.

If You Teach Golfers to Play Better, You Are a Change Agent

You are not powerless or non-influential in your role at your facility. I can share stories of 20+ year PGA members and Level 1 PGA apprentices who using PGA Junior League Golf to make powerful influential, impacts on their facility

Being a great PGA teaching professional is not about accepting the status quo. When a golfer comes to you with a bad grip, you work with them to alter it by leading them to feel/understand the proper grip. The same goes for poor posture, takeaway, impact position, balance at follow-through and a million other things. The student may not like the new feeling, new setup or similar but because they trust us (we are influencing them) they stick with it. And in most cases, the student “hits more good shots, fewer bad ones” and has “more fun with their friends” in golf. Note: These are the 1st and 2nd most important factors for our golfers.

As I wrote last month, I am looking for opportunities to tell stories of #ThxPGAPro and how our Section PGA professionals are leading change through player development. If you’ve got one to share with our Section, I am asking you to share it with me. For now, I would like to thank all of you who have joined our “coalition of the willing” for the opportunity to work with you, your facilities and to share in your success.


Monte Koch, Certified PGA Professional/Player Development
Player Development Regional Mgr/Mentor**
PGA of America (Greater Seattle/PacNW PGA Section)
Email:  Cell: 206/335-5260