The Simple Checklist

Airline pilots have long recognized the importance of using checklists to ensure that all steps in preparing to fly or land a plane have been properly attended to.  For pilots the issue is a critical one – safety.  But checklists can also be used to train employees in the proper steps for any important process or event.  A quick list of the things to be done with a place to check off that it was completed is a simple, yet effective way to make sure employees understand and do what is required.

The checklist is also important for establishing accountability for any important action – say securing the club at the end of the day, properly completing opening duties, ensuring the cleanliness of kitchens and bathrooms, and completion of any action with safety implications.  The responsible employee checks off each step as it’s completed, then signs and dates the checklist indicating that all steps were completed.  The manager or supervisor can then spot check to ensure that the work was properly done.  If not, she knows who is responsible for the failure.

Solutions don’t have to be complicated; they just have to work.  Using checklists is an effective way of handling many recurring responsibilities within the club.

Thanks and have a great day!

Ed Rehkopf

This weekly blog comments on and discusses the club industry and its challenges. From time to time, we will feature guest bloggers — those managers and industry experts who have something of interest to say to all of us. We also welcome feedback and comment upon the blog, hoping that it will become a useful sounding board for what’s on the minds of hardworking club managers throughout the country and around the world.

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