Jay Karen, NGCOA Chief Executive Officer, Goes Off the Rails: A Response

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Are you threatening me? The tone and tenor of your email below, in my opinion, is not appropriate for an individual in your position. I have copied selected Board members of the NGCOA who I have a great respect for and have personally met as they and I have a mutual goal of improving the investment return of all golf courses owners.

For the record, I am a journalist.

Since January 11, 2016, I have written 101 blog entries (https://jjkeegan.com/category/blog/) and published the fifth edition of the Business of Golf – What Are You Thinking (https://jjkeegan.com/product-category/book-store/) that has sold 935 copies. To date, the Business of Golf – What Are You Thinking book series has sold 6,583 copies in 16 countries. In addition, I donated 300 copies to the 2017 NGCOA Conference at a retail value of $59,985.

You are a public figure representing 5,300 members who manage 7,200 golf courses.

In sending you an email on November 9 with a suggested new member, you tartly replied then and again below. With my being an industry writer, our communication is governed by the rules for on/off the record conversations (https://www.quora.com/What-are-the-rules-for-off-the-record-conversations). “Off the record” status cannot be granted retroactively. The rules of “off the record” apply to email, also. For you to presume otherwise, in my opinion, is naïve.

Of greater concern is that you stated, “I don’t personally feel qualified enough to give you a scientific or academic response to the algorithm and variables in the spreadsheet.” The Customer Value Experience template we provided you helps a golf course determine an appropriate green fee based on the experience provided. It is a simple exercise that any golfer course owner could easily complete. It has been beta tested by over 100 golf courses including many members of the NGCOA. It represents one of 18 guides we have developed to guide course management to enhanced profits.

I believe that the Chief Executive Officer of the NGCOA should understand the fundamental requirements of managing a golf course. From creating a strategic vision to knowing the tactical resources required and the appropriate policies and procedures are the basic tenets on which owners can maximize their investment return. Without this basic knowledge, how does one effectively serve their constituency with sage leadership in crafting meaningful educational programs?

Perhaps we now know why the NGCOA under your direction is struggling. Perhaps, you are not the right person for the job.

Notwithstanding the barriers you create or the barbs that you might send, we will continue to work passionately on behalf of golf course owners to improve their investment return for I have a great admiration for their life’s mission.

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