Archive for the ‘professional development’ Category

Q.E.D. Managerial Malpractice

Monday, May 23rd, 2016

Fifty years ago this fall in my freshman year at college I was enrolled in my first course in calculus.  Every day in class we were drilled in solving problems and were required to “recite” our solutions to assigned problems at the blackboard in front of the rest of the class.  By drill and repetition our final step in every recitation was to write Q.E.D followed by the double underlined solution.

This may seem like an arcane ritual, but as we were told Q.E.D. stood for the Latin phrase Quod erat Demonstratum, which as Wikipedia states, means “which is what had to be proven” — an abbreviated phrase traditionally placed at the end of a mathematical proof or philosophical argument indicating the completion of the proof.

Though my college and calculus days are long behind me, I cannot help but use this traditional formulation to explicate the most basic problem we face in club management and how to overcome it.  If you agree with the postulated statements, they then should logically lead to the demonstrated resolution.  So, in the words of a number of very successful individuals who’ve given much thought to the matter, here’s the argument:

“The quality of leadership, more than any other single factor, determines the success or failure of an organization.”

Fred Fiedler & Martin Chemers, authors of Improving Leadership Effectiveness

“The most dangerous leadership myth is that leaders are born – that there is a genetic factor to leadership.  This myth asserts that people simply either have certain charismatic qualities or not.  That’s nonsense; in fact, the opposite is true.  Leaders are made rather than born.”

Warren Bennis, scholar, organizational consultant and author, widely regarded as a pioneer of the contemporary field of Leadership studies

“Before you are a leader, success is all about growing yourself.  When you become a leader, success is all about growing others.”

                Jack Welch, former chairman and CEO of General Electric

 “Coaching isn’t an addition to a leader’s job; it’s an integral part of it.”

George S. Odiorne, business school professor and dean, consultant, corporate manager and author of 300 articles and 26 books

“The single biggest way to impact an organization is to focus on leadership development. There is almost no limit to the potential of an organization that recruits good people, raises them up as leaders and continually develops them.”

John Maxwell, author, speaker, and pastor who has written many books, primarily focusing on leadership

Q.E.D. “Not investing in leadership development is the equivalent of organizational malpractice.

Quint Studer, businessman, philanthropist, author of Hardwiring Excellence

When put this bluntly, no self-respecting club manager wants to be accused of managerial malpractice, so here are some cost-effective solutions to this lack of investment – in actuality the cost is more an investment in time, but the rewards are extraordinary to both individuals and the club.

  • Make development of leadership and management discipline skills part of each department head’s annual plan for improvement, insisting they do the same for their subordinate managers.  Review development progress during annual performance reviews.
  • Use the Bully Pulpit to “preach” both an enthusiasm and commitment to self-development among subordinate managers.
  • Use Leadership on the Line and The Workbook to teach and model a consistent, Service-Based Leadership style throughout the club.  The basic lessons in these books are the perfect introduction to what should become a lifetime of leadership development.
  • Commit to building a leadership and management disciplines library of reading material.  Routinely assign books, articles, and white papers to be read by some or all.  Encourage subordinates to lead discussions on relevant topics.  Articles, white papers, and infographics can be downloaded at no cost from the HRI website.
  • Use staff meetings for brief on-the-go discussions of leadership and management disciplines.  A wide variety of On the Go Training books are available for purchase on the HRI website store.
  • Use the Monthly Review of Operating Statements meetings with each department head to review and discuss leadership development.
  • Set a strong example of the leadership/mentoring/coaching paradigm for all managers to emulate.
  • Continue to maintain a focus on leadership development over the long haul.  Such self-development is a lifelong enterprise and helps the individual as well as the club.

Yes, this all requires effort, organization, and work for small standalone operations, but keep in mind that clubs that engage in a formal program of leadership development experience significant benefits, ranging from improved initiative and engagement among managers, to enhanced performance resulting from the club-wide impact of consistent service-based leadership, as well as to pride in belonging to a high-performing operation known for quality and excellence.

Thanks and have a great day!

Ed Rehkopf

This weekly blog comments on and discusses the hospitality 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 hospitality managers throughout the country and around the world.

Hospitality Resources International – Management Resources for Hospitality Operators!

Professional Development for Your Club Management Team

Monday, January 30th, 2012

Club general managers wear many hats and have wide-ranging responsibilities. Given the many duties of the position it’s easy for some of the less pressing aspects of the job to be neglected. Yet there is one facet of leadership and management that may ultimately hold the key to better club organization and improved club performance – and that is to take an active role in the professional development of your club’s management team.

Here are some tips and topics to organize and deploy a Professional Development Program at your club:

  • Use the Bully Pulpit of your position to encourage subordinate managers to improve their professional development and career skills. Your active engagement and involvement in such a program will foster improved commitment to you and your agenda as your team recognizes your interest in their development.
  • Leadership. Encourage managers to embrace a consistent service-based style of leadership. Make sure they understand the benefits to this powerful approach to leadership in hospitality operations.
  • Membership By-Laws and Rules. Assign them the task of reading your club’s by-laws and membership rules and hold periodic discussions of these to ensure their comprehension. A better understanding of how clubs are organized and what rules apply make them more knowledgeable about their jobs and those of their work teams.
  • Human Resources. Make sure they are schooled in the basics and underlying rationale of human resource policies, practices, and techniques. A better understanding of these will not only enhance your club’s HR disciplines and practices, but will add to each of your team member’s management skills.
  • Employee Development and Disciplinary Guides. As with human resources, a better understanding of how to motivate staff, improve communication and morale, as well as guidance for counseling, disciplining, and, if necessary, discharging problem employees will prove invaluable to both your club and the individual manager.
  • Accounting and Financial Management. A thorough understanding of fiscal responsibilities and disciplines will help your operation and make your team members better all-around managers.
  • Legal and Liability Issues. Every club manager must be familiar with the basics of these issues. They are at the heart of liability abatement at your club and a critically important knowledge base for any manager.
  • Organizational Values and Culture of Service. The foundational importance of these is essential to any organization intent upon engaging staff and providing high levels of service. Every manager must recognize and embrace the need to define and consistently reinforce values and culture.
  • Training. Managers must understand the challenges and opportunities of formal club training programs for both managers and employees. Recognizing the importance of training in a detail- and people-intensive business, as well as the experience of developing training material, is invaluable to the club and each manager.
  • Professional Reading List. The general manager should make a reading list available to the management team, develop a club professional reading library, and make reading certain leadership and management books a requirement of annual work plans.
  • Leadership, Management, and Service Quotes. Use quotes to foster discussions among your management team at weekly staff meetings. A continual focus and reminder of the topics involved will provide constant reinforcement of the important things that underlie success in business in general and the club industry in particular.

The quality and efficacy of a Professional Development Program is directly dependent on the committed involvement of the general manager. As the director of your club’s enterprise and leader of your management team, you have a great opportunity (some would say responsibility) to influence your subordinate managers through your leadership and example.

If you take a hands-off approach to your team’s professional development, only a few will seize the opportunity for self-improvement. On the other hand, when you are directly involved, engaged with your team on the subjects involved, and set both the example and requirement of professional development, your team will embrace the opportunity you are providing. On many levels such encouragement to learning and developing is one of the most important and personally satisfying things you can do to improve your operation and develop your staff.

Bottom Line: A constantly encouraged and reinforced Professional Development Program for your club managers will strengthen the management disciplines of your operation, while providing education, experience, and career growth opportunities for your managers.

Note: As can be seen from the links above, much of the material necessary to establish a Professional Development Program has already been created by Club Resources International. All you need to do is use the tools to organize and implement your own program.

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.

Club Resources International – Management Resources for Clubs!

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