Mercifully, the USGA only posted an excerpt from Walter Driver's
shareholders annual meeting address.
Now, I'm not making this up (Honestly, check the link, if nothing else to see the bizarre underlining of certain key words):
We intend to (1) improve the platform of the USGA so that the USGA is organized to meet present and future golf and economic challenges and (2) build the best staff and volunteer team. We believe you will see the USGA is getting better at everything it does. You will see more evolution to meet current needs.Classic empty corporatespeak. Fine, I'm sure the groupthinkers in attendance ate it up.
We have recently announced corporate partnerships with American Express and Lexus. The corporate partners program will allow the USGA to reach more golfers and educate them on our programs and initiatives. This will strengthen the USGA Members program as part of the golf community and improve our communication with the golfing population.
Translation: since we dropped Golf Journal and started that tacky newsletter, our membership numbers are plummeting and we had to sell out so we could pad the numbers.
Both companies share many of our values, beliefs and high standards.
I bet those companies hope they don't shre the USGA's values, at least, not with the USGA that lost $6.1 million last year.
With American Express, the USGA can help AMEX add value to millions of cardholders while allowing the USGA the opportunity to educate them about our Association and its programs. Lexus will become the official car of the U.S. Open, U.S. Women’s Open, U.S. Senior Open and U.S. Amateur, alleviating a huge operational issue of our needing 10,000-12,000 "car nights" throughout championship season. These partnerships will benefit both partners and, ultimately, golfers as well.
Okay, I repeat, I am NOT making this up:
We are also exploring new ways to use the Internet and better communicate to USGA members, volunteers, players, fans and the golf community. Golf has become increasingly global. In 2006, the U.S. Open television broadcast was seen in excess of 150 nations. USOpen.com received 117 million page views and provided streaming video during the week of the championship. The ideas are unlimited and very exciting – the harder part will be prioritization and implementation. This is yet another example of continued evolution of the USGA’s business model.
Yep, he just said business model. This business just spent $30 million more than it did last year running the U.S. Open and is bleeding red. What a model!
Oh, and I know, you were thinking this was a non-profit, not a business. Get with it people!
You may ask "why are we doing this?" And the answer is Built to Last.
Built to Last is the leading business management "bible" and has been on the New York Times Best Seller list for years.
Yes the USGA, once run by volunteer captains of law, business and medicine now has a President citing a New York Times bestseller as the organization's guiding source of light!
The keys to building a lasting, effective institution include:
# Preserve the core and change the process – Absolute dedication to the game but keep up with distribution and media challenges and equipment technology
Answer: sell out to a foreign auto maker, start a boring blog and ban those pesky U-grooves!
# Big, audacious goals – best championships in golf, superior volunteers, great player experience, make the game more affordable and accessible
Yeah, those are pretty audacious goals for an organization that has trouble keeping those pesky mowers from undertaking middle of the night green rollings.
# Cult-like cultures – boy, have we got that!
Wait, did Walter just crack a joke that was actually funny? Well, he is an outgoing president.
# Try a lot of things and keep what works – this is what we are doing, open-minded, determined to constantly improve
Boy this is some book! Whoa, try a lot of things and keep what works. Why didn't I think of that?!
And you say you don't learn things on this blog?