Keith Stewart: Inspire a Specific Culture

Keith Stewart, a three-time New Jersey PGA Section Horton Smith Award winner and a Section board member, is the PGA Head Professional at Springdale Golf Club in Princeton, New Jersey.

About three years ago, I saw the term “Director of Fun” on social media. It struck me that this concept was something I could utilize in creating a positive golfing culture at the club. I believe style filters down and therefore this creative job title created a specific perception of our mission as a professional team. One of our partners, Signs by the Sea, designed a custom sign “Director of Fun” which hangs above my office door. I chose to hang the sign there intentionally to remind my members, staff and guests that my office is a fun place; golf is only a game; and to enjoy themselves and share fun ideas about cool events or things we can do. The job title has been embraced by the staff and membership. As a PGA Professional, I took the opportunity to partner with a vendor while inspiring members and staff to create a culture that is especially rewarding and fun.

The message has taken hold and members refer to me as the “Director of Fun;” some people even think it’s my real job title! A better overall mental disposition means my staff is more likely to provide a better experience that will lead to more sales, lessons and outing participation. And, our members will participate in more events and play more rounds. Essentially everyone is involved in helping create a fun environment for members and staff. You will feel the impact almost immediately and within a couple weeks, you’ll be amazed how you can define a culture and inspire a community. So, lighten things up and create an uplifting atmosphere. It will have amazing positive effects for you and your facility.