Kristy Vik is the superintendent of revenue facilities at Buffalo Grove (Ill.) Golf and Sports Center.
Kristy Vik on the importance of encouraging your staff to offer semi-private or small group lessons: Many new golf professionals are encouraged to offer a series of lessons, such as “buy five lessons and receive the sixth lesson free.” The idea is to increase business for the new professional. While this may increase the number of lessons the professional has, there are two potential problems you must be aware of if you implement this program: If it is successful, you may run into trouble scheduling all of the lessons in a timely fashion. Secondly, when you add up all of the free lessons given, you realize how much you have given away. The professional may take a double hit if he or she is unable to schedule additional students. Rather than do this, I encourage my staff to offer a semi-private lesson or a small group lesson. This type of setting is very popular with women, young couples, and people who must learn golf for business.
Kristy Vik on the business impact of encouraging your staff to offer semi-private or small group lessons: The key here is to increase the fee slightly for an additional person in both cases. Many times professionals decrease the fees because there are two people or a group. A good rule of thumb is to double your private lesson fee and add $10 to the semi-private rate. The group price should be the private lesson fee plus $5 for each additional person. All ball fees or course percentages can be included in the lesson fees. By including the ball fees, people feel they are getting a good deal for their money. You can screen the people to match appropriate skill levels. It’s often easy to convert the students to private lessons, because there will come a point when the skill sets will be obviously different.