Monday, March 25, 2019

The Future Looks Bright - Millennials

The future looks bright, not just as it relates to the golf course, but also with the young people we have working for us on the golf course, Millennial's.  We have all heard the stereotypes of Millennial's; their entitled, their lazy, their snowflakes, they all want trophies, they want special privileges, etc.  I've even been guilty of believing some of these stereotypes.  However my experience with Millennial's has been anything but the typical stereotype.

Gonzalo, Mark, Nick, Levi, Davis, Cole, Chris, Aaron.  Not pictured Jason & Adam.
Approximately two thirds of our staff is classified as Millennial's, those born between 1981 and 1996.  These are some of the hardest working people that I have ever had the pleasure to lead.  I have had my challenges with this group, mostly because I don't always understand what motivates them, but they continue to make me believe they are worthy of my generation's admiration.

As hard of work as there is, tree removal in a ravine.  All the trees had to be brought out by hand.
A few take-aways for this group;
  • Millennial's like teamwork.  Time and time again I have watched more experienced employees reach out to teach a less experienced employee how to do a task.
  • They like flexibility.  Millennial's want time off and they don't want to do the same job over and over again.  The time off thing has taken some time to get used to but I have embraced it and have been rewarded for it with dedicated and hardworking employees.  As for doing the same job over and over, I have always preferred cross training employees and this group loves it. 
  • Millennial's are glued to their phones.  No arguing this one as most generations today are glued to them.  I gave up the fight to listening to music on the course a long time ago and the phone falls into the same category.  I have seen no downturn in crew productivity by allowing the phones.  In the end, our employees are happier at work and I can call them on the course if I need them.
  • Millennial's will work hard if they believe in their leaders and the company they work for.  You have to engage this group.  Let them know what the big picture is and what their role is in it.  I am always trying to let them know why they are doing something on the course and why it is important to the membership.  I also share all the comments I get from members sharing their gratitude for the staff's hard work. 
A break from work.  Camaraderie at El Manzanillo
By focusing on all of our employee's needs, we have been able to create a multi-generational staff that's able to punch above it's weight, and thanks in no small part to a bunch of Millennial's.  

All Millennial's need their phone.

Monday, March 18, 2019

Sink Hole on #18

When it rains it pours and as of today, we have had 30 plus inches of rain this year.  That rain has highlighted some deficiencies on the course, most notably rusted steel culverts.  While we have replaced most of the steel culverts, there are some that remain such as the one that travels across the fairway on #18.
Sink hole on #18
After our last major rain event, we were welcomed by a large sink hole in the middle of the fairway on #18.  At the surface was what looked to be about a 5 foot hole, but upon further inspection, there was a much larger cavity below the sod.  We immediately closed the hole for safety reasons.  It did not take long to figure out what the problem was, a rusted 18 inch steel culvert.
Digging out the old pipe.

Front of #18 green
Since the pipe was too deep for our staff to safely replace, we solicited bids to have the pipe replaced with double wall plastic pipe.  This pipe will last for well over 50 years.  While the job seems simple enough, there are electrical wires and irrigation pipes that have to be avoided.  Additionally, all subsurface drain lines need to be connected to new pipe.  With good weather, I expect this work to be completed by the end of this week.
New pipe extends all the way to the lake.