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November 2017

Vantage Point

Vantage Point‭From the CEO

We’re only a little more than a month removed from the conclusion of our Golf Business TechCon, the first technology-focused conference in golf since the NGCOA last held it in 1999.

My head is still spinning in the post-event haze of what went well, what went wrong and what this event could still be in the future. And better yet, what role can the NGCOA play in the technology space beyond just a conference? Don’t get me wrong, conferences are fantastic, and allow the market of suppliers and customers to interact. But what I learned in Las Vegas while conducting feedback with vendors and attendees was that we can’t wait two years to do this again.

I’m now asking myself and the NGCOA staff and leadership: What more can TechCon be? What more can the NGCOA do? For starters, I think TechCon can be a place where we generate content and an agenda for the golf industry, rather than simply content for the attendees. In other words, how do we harness the intelligence, experience and entrepreneurialism in the room to create a path forward for the golf industry? Can we bring in the technological advances happening outside of golf into the four walls of the NGCOA and the golf industry to build a bridge?

Many of the tech companies in golf are doing simply amazing work, and they’re meeting many needs of course operators and golfers. And, generally, the marketplace of suppliers will do that. But, can we be more prescriptive and intentional in our industry about what we should be adopting and deploying at the golf course?

Please accept my apologies if you’re tired of hearing me or reading my words about technology. But when you think about the golf experience and the golf business, I’m certain technology advances will be what sustain the industry for years to come. Automating those customer experiences that can or should be automated. Gathering data in new ways that provide operators with information to make better decisions.

Maybe technology will make things so easy that operators will be able to get back to where they once were—running the business out of a cigar box. Well, that’s the aspiration of the NGCOA’s board president, Rock Lucas. I hope we can help get him there.

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