Striving To Improve December 16, 2016 By Steve Kammerer, regional director, Southeast Region

Bad things happen in golf and life. Tackling problems and learning from mistakes can improve your outlook and performance.

As we enter college football bowl season, the teams that will compete for a championship have been officially selected. To determine which teams will face each other in bowl games, the selection committee had to consider factors beyond just team performance and record. The selection committee also had to consider the level of competition, the motivation of each team to play difficult teams out of conference and the ability of each team to win outside the confines of their home field.

Similar considerations may apply to potential job applicants. What has that individual accomplished? Have they gone outside their comfort zone to tackle new challenges and problems? How difficult or challenging were their previous jobs? The applicant must also be prepared to answer questions like, “What was your most difficult situation or problem and how did you solve it?”, “What motivates you?” and “What would you do differently if you were in this position?”

There is something to be said for seeking a new challenge or volunteering to tackle difficult problems. Staying engaged and passionate requires the drive and energy to continually improve as well as the ability to look at doing things differently, even at the risk of failing. Think of the Wright brothers who endured countless obstacles, skepticism and failures before they succeeded in putting a motorized airplane in the sky. Perhaps your responsibilities don’t quite approach this level of challenge; but, as we close out the year, review your accomplishments and develop objectives for next year. Remember to ask yourself the following:

  • How can I improve my performance?
  • What could I be doing differently?
  • Am I internally motivated or am I just doing what I'm told?
  • How can my actions help others and help the golf course?
  • Would I enjoy working with myself every day?
  • Knowing my capabilities, how would I grade myself?

As Albert Einstein once said, “If you want to live a happy life, tie it to a goal not to people or objects.”


Southeast Region Agronomists:

Chris Hartwiger, director, USGA Course Consulting Service -

Steve Kammerer, regional director –

Patrick M. O’Brien, agronomist –

Todd Lowe, agronomist –

Information on the USGA’s Course Consulting Service

Contact the Green Section Staff

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