September 21, 2017

Harry Hammond: Enhance Member Retention Through Personalized Experiences

Harry Hammond, is a PGA Master Professional and the PGA Director of Golf at Penn Oaks Golf Club in West Chester, Pennsylvania.

Harry Hammond on the importance of enhancing member retention through personalized experiences:
Now more than ever, members at private facilities are looking at how much each round of golf costs them. If they don’t feel the club and staff are welcoming, they will likely seek out other private clubs or consider public facilities. In order to sustain high retention, staff has to be personable. From the first contact with members by outside services, to the internal golf operations staff, engaging members and personalizing their experience is our priority. Most facilities have a driving range, however we make an effort to have our PGA Professionals offer free tips to members that are practicing. We aren’t trying to make a quick sale, but rather show that we care and want to help them. I make our staff aware that they have to leave their problems at the door and be on their game. I encourage them to engage members, make eye contact, smile and ask them how their round went.

Harry Hammond on the business impact of enhancing member retention through personalized experiences:
If a club is losing less than 5 percent of their membership annually, they are doing well. Fortunately we are below that number and I attribute that to our ability to create a memorable experience for our members. At the end of the year when a member is looking at their dues, we have to have created enough positive experiences that justifies the expense. Although any club can offer a golf course and a range, it’s the intangles and the way you make the member feel that will influence a member’s decision to remain loyal to the club.


If you would like to email the author of this Best Practice directly, please email hhammond@pennoaksgolfclub.com