Integrity Matters Broadcasts, 2006

September 6, 2006

Leading the way with integrity

Dear Friends:

Good news! PGA Magazine, September - 2006, has published my essay on leadership in their current issue titled: Leading the Way.

Jim BracherLeadership requirements similar for PGA Professionals, corporate executives
September 2006; By Jim Bracher

Can a PGA Professional teach a CEO something about running a company successfully? The answer may surprise you.

Successful PGA Professionals not only play well, but also relate maturely with many different people, maintaining commitments to the highest principles of golf. They perform excellently while managing others productively. They teach students of all ages constructively and communicate effectively, while simultaneously mastering their own emotional reactions, intellectual and strategic challenges and performance demands. Playing consistently at or below par defines the scratch golfer, but not necessarily a PGA Professional. Those at the top of the game can teach more than driving, chipping and putting. They are master leaders as well.

First, they understand and model the behaviors required to play golf at a consistently high level. They are PGA Professionals because they are able to:

  • Control emotions, including anxiety and tension, quieting the mind.
  • Stay in the moment, concentrating and leaving bad shots behind.
  • Assess circumstances continuously, both opportunities and risks.
  • Concentrate, relying on individual routine throughout performance.
  • Stick with decisions, visualizing and executing without uncertainty or fear.
  • Maintain confidence and rhythm; sustaining balance and calm.
  • Remember to see, feel and hit the ball - with confidence and intensity.

Acknowledge that performance at this level has already qualified those who have the talent and discipline to perform consistently at the highest levels. At the professional level, it is foremost about attitude - monitoring and controlling emotions and, of course, keeping score with integrity.

As managers working with and through others, like other executives, PGA Professionals exhibit these seven "best-in-class" inspiring leadership behaviors. They elect to be the role model for what is expected from others - all the time; establish goals with clear parameters that encourage innovation, risk and experimentation, leveraging original ideas and creativity. Productive professionals clarify accountabilities, measuring frequently and consistently; reward appropriately for high levels of performance and innovation; and teach constantly.

Leaders replace those, in timely ways, who are unwilling or unable to "be" partners and supporters of high-level client-centered service culture. PGA Professionals embrace the entrepreneurial approach with optimism, seeing obstacles as opportunities, with a clear focus on providing goods and services that generate legitimate profits.

Successful PGA Professionals are also teachers. Like effective executives, they transfer performance excellence to students or colleagues of all ages, all the time. They know that teaching with impact involves asking the right questions after having made, and then confirmed, perceptive observations.

Leaders know how to utilize client-specific tools and processes that accelerate learning, always leveraging the uniqueness of each instructor's assets, both intellectual and athletic. These tools may include video equipment and data to confirm developmental needs, training aids and golf-swing improvement exercises, varied environments - practice facilities versus on-course play and coaching, and always, keeping records to monitor progress.

PGA Professionals and executives make sure clients receive what they want as well as what they need, and they create improvement plans, with milestones, with recovery steps when objectives are not met.

Finally, successful PGA Professionals communicate competencies, capacities and values. They know that communications effectiveness is almost always about congruence between what one says and how one operates.

In conclusion, leadership requirements are the same for the PGA Professional, corporate executive, parent, surgeon, teacher, religious leader, farmer, politician, attorney, gardener or technologist. Professionals always do the job with excellence, helping others learn while consistently communicating with sensitivity and graciousness. Leadership is about competence, courage and communication.
It begins and ends with listening, and always with integrity.

To view original essay: "What they didn't teach you in business school that your golf professional might"

Please consider attending our upcoming one-day workshop entitled: MBA Impact: Essentials. Learn more and register for September 20- MBA Impact: Essentials



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