Meet the manager… Matt Hart

Hythe’s Golf Club Manager and Director of Golf has enjoyed a varied career – but has now settled on golf club management at this Kent club... How did you get into golf club management? I just stumbled into it, really. I was working as a golf pro originally and then I heard that the job was available. I approached the club to discuss dealing with the golf side of things but it turned out the vacancy was to manage the club as well, so the two roles - the director of golf and the management side - fell hand in hand. Tell me about that role – it sounds like a lot of work? For a first role, I’m fortunate. The golf club is quite small - we’ve got 240 members – and it’s tight knit on the golf side of things. They hadn’t had a golf pro here for about ten years so it was quite an easy place to come into and to just give a bit of direction - what to do, what not to do.  Then, on the management and finance side, I’m learning as I go and that will take me more time than the golf stuff. Are you enjoying that challenge?  Definitely, and while it’s been an eye opener, it was always something that I wanted to get into. I had a vision that I needed to do my GCMA qualifications first to get a job, but I’ve been quite fortunate that I’ve got the role and now I can do the GCMA Diploma on top.  Tell us a little bit about Hythe... We’re a pay and play course, next to a hotel, although we run as two separate businesses. We’re a little bit quirky - we’ve got 18 tee boxes and 12 greens, although we’re still classed as a par 69 and an 18-hole golf course. You play some of the greens twice, but obviously each tee is different.  It’s quite small, but the space is utilised well and we’re always in nice condition. We’ve got good drainage, which obviously helps in the winter.  You’ve already moved around the golf industry in your career so far. Is management where you see your future? Yes, especially now I’ve started my Diploma as well.  Now that I’m into the role, it’s one that I want to continue in and progress in.  I was a golf pro for seven years, and I am still coaching a little bit and I’ll keep my PGA membership, but I was looking to come out of that side so this is certainly where I want to continue. How are you finding the Diploma?  I only started in October, but it’s going to be difficult. I think it’s quite a lot of work, but the key thing with it is time management .  I remember when I did my PGA, you had year one, year two, and year three, and they staggered the work for you.  With the Diploma, you’re on your...
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