If you’ve spent any time with me, in education, or in 1:1 meetings, you are aware of my appreciation for Simon Sinek and his “Start with Why” concepts. These really are game changers for me and many, many others in our Section and our industry. At a high level, Simon reminds us why we should be in this business (if we look at our employment as a career, which is “more than a job”). His statement, “People don’t buy WHAT you do, they buy WHY you do it”, will likely resonate with you if you see it that way.

He did a lot of leading with “Leaders Eat Last” as well. If you have 45 mins to invest in yourself this fall, and you want to be a more effective leader, please check out this incredible video:

In this conversation, Simon shares concepts about some key areas of leadership for all of us:

  • What does “Leaders Eat Last” really mean?
    • Here’s a hint:  Nobody wants to wake up in the morning and be managed, we want to wake up and be led. — Simon Sinek
  • What four key chemicals in our physiology (our bodies) affect the way each of us conduct ourselves, and how do they work to “motivate us” to behave, interact with others, etc? (And, by extension, how can we use an understanding of these details to lead our teams, motivate and build teams, etc.)
  • He also talks about a 5th chemical that helps us survive when we are in “fight or flight” situations – and he applies how that chemical, though it’s designed for survival, is actually “killing us” slowly through stressful situations at work, that we bring home to our families.
  • Check it out!


One of his newer areas of focus is on “game theory”. More specifically, understanding the “Infinite Game vs Finite Game”. As I enjoy doing, I am going to do my best to share applications that I see pertain directly to PGA golf professionals and the golf industry.

“Finite players play to beat the people around them. Infinite players play to be better than themselves.” – Simon Sinek

  • How can you and I consider this quote and consider our current perspective, and maybe adjust it for our future?
    • Are we trying to “beat our peers?” (when there really is no way we can do that, except one given golf tournament or round, as the metrics of measurement are not all defined, not all agreed upon, etc.)
    • Or, are we trying to be “just a little bit better” today than yesterday, or measurably better as a golf professional, an organization, a Club, etc. to start this year than we were at the beginning of last year.
    • When you think about your career, do you make them based on an “infinite perspective”? More specifically, are they based on:
      • Your Why
      • Your Core Values
      • Intangibles for You, Your Family, Your Club/Facility
      • These “why we do what we do” and “values-based” decision filters typically help us make the day-to-day that lead to good, smart and beneficial outcomes. It is these value-based filters that drive the whats, the hows and rationale behind both minor and major decisions.

Most of my poor decisions, both in my career, in my dealings with my wife/kids, my extended family, friends, my career…(I could go on…) have been based on a “finite perspective.” I was thinking short-term, was self-focused and probably wanted to “make myself feel better”. As we know, sadly, a finite perspective leads to people getting hurt, failures in outcomes, etc.

With this in mind, I’m going to continue to work on my perspective about my career, about my role in service to PGA members and associates (and I respectfully challenge you to do the same). I want my professional life to be more about the “infinite” and more about the helping those I have the opportunity to work with, to impact, encourage and lead. Even though I haven’t figured this out yet (and I am sure I never will), I commit to keep trying and to keep having the will to do it.

Compare this to a finite perspective, where we tend to look at our compensation, how much we are “getting out of the job,” and other things. With an infinite perspective, the only outcomes that really matter from my life and/or my career are:

  • What difference have I made in helping those I serve get better (a least a little bit)? These are intangible things that are really hard to measure. But, if I can assist help you as a golf professional with your compensation, the stability of your job/position and your own job satisfaction…I am being successful. (By the way, the previous sentence is pretty much my professional why.) It is this understanding and perspective that fuels the “values-based decision” I make every day in my role as a PGA Career Consultant.
  • For this fall/winter, please think about the ways you can make your career focus be “infinite game focused” than it is right now.

It’s time to move forward…so let’s move forward (for your benefit, and maybe for those you lead/manage too) together.

I hope to see you soon, or at least talk with you soon,


Monte Koch, PGA Certified Professional/Player Development | Career Consultant
PGA Career Services | PGA of America
Serving PGA professionals, employers in the Pacific NW & Rocky Mountain PGA Sections
Email: Mkoch@pgahq.com Cell: 206/335-5260