Long Drives: What Golf Can Teach You About Your Career
While you may already daydream about golfing while you are supposed to be putting together that report for your boss, you may be onto something.
Many of the principles that you apply to improving your golf game can also be applied in the workplace.
Practice Makes Perfect
The only way to improve your golf game is practice, constantly. If you are a serious golfer, you more than likely have a golf simulator loaded on your work computer to get in that practice time.
Next time, when taking a break and practicing your swing, take note of how you are approaching your game that day and see how that is showing up in the workplace.
Same as in the workplace, applying your hard work to your field of expertise will only help you to improve. Strive to constantly be learning new ways to perfect your craft. Try reaching out to others in your similar position and see what they do to help improve their performance.
If your company offers funding for career development classes, take advantage of the opportunity and register for a class that will help you become a master instead of a novice.
Even if you have been working the same job for the past 25 years, there are always new methods and processes that can be applied to make your day run smoother or to heighten your performance.
Dedication to the Game
The amount of time that you invest into your golf game speaks to the passion that you have for the sport. Try to apply this amount of dedication to your current role as an employee.
When asked to put in a little extra effort or to pick up some slack around the office, don’t begrudge the task. Take the opportunity to show how thankful you are to be in your current role within the company.
In the game of golf, you are expected to operate with integrity and act as your own referee. Apply this to your work day by showing the best aspects of your character in every act that you do.
Commit to creating an honest work environment and not staying out for an extra five minutes every lunch hour or not making the next pot of coffee when you take the last bit for yourself.
Improving Your Form
Many golfers are very invested in improving their form as a way to improve their golf game. This happens by being hyper aware of hand, foot and eye placement. Bring this level of body awareness with you into the workplace.
Body language in the workplace is widely noticed by your co-workers, employees and supervisors. How you hold yourself, the firmness of your handshake and eye contact can affect how a potential client or employer perceives and responds to you.
Just how a limp grip on your driver can affect your golf game, a loose handshake could lose you a deal.
Just like on the green, you don’t want to fidget too often as it can be disrupting to you and your team. Make enough movement to be successful and get your point across without being overly animate.
Golf is not considered a game of verbal communication like some team oriented sports. However, there are some notes to be taken on how your golf game can be applied to how you communicate in the workplace.
Take a note from your golf game and be efficient with your words as you are with your movements. When you ramble when attempting to convey information you run the risk of being confusing and losing the essence of the message you are attempting to convey.
Avoid being vague or overly broad in your statements. This will enable you to set clear expectations and avoid any miscommunication in the office.
Similarly as you would appreciate to be respected with a quiet audience on the green, make sure to listen and hold your tongue when having important business conversations. Truly listen to what the other person has to say rather than just waiting for your turn to speak.
If something appears unclear, ask for clarification to avoid making assumptions. Being an active listener helps to build your credibility in the workplace and reflects well upon your communicating skills.
Being aware of how you manage yourself and your emotions on the playing field enables you to see how you handle stress and frustration in other areas of your life. If your golf game is going poorly that day, evaluate how you treat your caddy or your opponent.
Do you become easily frustrated and fly off the handle or do you take a moment to assess the situation before moving forward with a particular action? How would you handle your temper on the golf course if things weren’t going as planned? Would you approach a fellow golfer and ask for tips to improve your game?
Consider asking for feedback from your employees about your management style and ways that you could improve. Take note of how your supervisor addresses management issues and create a mental toolbox for yourself to apply to your day to day operations.
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