You think you deserve more money. You want a raise. So how do you go about doing it? Mark Woodward, Lyne Tumlinson and Mike Vogt have consulted extensively with golf course superintendents and facilities on a variety of career and management issues. They offer their thoughts on how to approach ownership and management to request a salary increase.

1. Set the stage.

Be seen as a team player and valued member of the management structure. Create your own visibility beyond the maintenance facility. Greet golfers on the tee, have lunch with other staff regularly, communicate issues relating to the course to peer managers and golfers. Demonstrate your engagement and commitment to the success of the facility, making yourself attractive to the additional investment (salary) by decision-makers.

2. Keep emotion out of the discussion.

Bosses love to see passion in their employees, but when asking for a raise they don’t care if you need money for a new car or that the added salary will make you “feel good.” Set up a meeting and let your owner or manager know in advance of the subject matter. Make the conversation professional and objective. Threats or demands have the potential to backfire.

3. Know your value.

What do you bring to the golf course that can be clearly defined and measured? What is it that you improved or added that attracted more golfers and/or increased their satisfaction? Provide data to support your request, just as you would to sell a course project or buying a new piece of equipment. You must be able to clearly articulate your value to your superior.

4. See the big picture.

You know your facility in terms of traffic, clientele, budget, etc. Your request for a raise must be realistic. If not, you might risk not getting the raise and the positive relationship you have with the boss.

5. Be open to negotiation.

Your owner or supervisor might agree with you that you deserve additional compensation or consideration for a promotion. However, their ideas might differ from yours as to what that looks like. You might be able to negotiate a car allowance, additional vacation, a new title, additional staff, etc., if a raise does not appear to be an option.

6. Be willing to be measured.

You might be able to set the stage for future raises beyond the standard cost of living increase if you and ownership collaboratively establish maintenance standards or benchmarks. These targets can provide an objective measure for evaluating ongoing performances and be a tool for annual reviews.

Featured photo: iStock/jansucko


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