Meet the Team: Darren Wood

In the latest entry in a regular series, we introduce you to a member of the GCMA team and find out a little more about them — this week it’s the turn of Partnerships Manager Darren Wood.

Describe your current role

Looking after a fantastic network of business partners all offering different skills, knowledge and services that can help our members in their day-to day-activities as club managers or aspiring managers, along with working alongside the HQ team in the day-to-day operational activities of our national association.

Tell us about your career to date

Golf is my passion and having been a professional golfer in my younger years then as relationship manager for a leading technology company within golf, the move to the GCMA to take care of the business partners and support the professional and personal wellbeing of UK club managers was a natural progression.

‌What are your key priorities for 2024 in your job?

This year is about working collaboratively with the rest of the HQ team, board and regional managers to ensure our business partners are getting great visibility through the various association communication channels and continue to provide our members with education and information. 2024 will see an evolution of how the partnership network is presented to the membership to make it easier for them to find the skills and services they may require to succeed in their professional and personal lives.

‌What does the GCMA mean to you?

The GCMA is very much about community for me. Having worked in the golf industry in one guise or another, I recognise that running and managing golf facilities can be a difficult, often thankless task. We are lucky to have so many talented men and women that have chosen club management as their careers and through the GCMA community they not only have GCMA staff and business partners to support them, but also each other. Regional meetings are a fantastic way to meet other managers, share experiences and learn that what you may think of as unique to your club is in fact quite common.

‌What is your message to GCMA members?

My message is one of support. As a community of club managers our association was founded in 1933 by golf club managers for golf club managers and that remains relevant today. Through the GCMA community you have dedicated helplines and online resources to support you in all aspects of club management.

‌Tell us one thing your colleagues don’t know about you

From 1999 until 2010 I worked at HMP Manchester, commonly known as Strangeways, in a variety of roles. Certainly an environment in which you grow up pretty quickly.

‌Your favourite sports team and why

Despite growing up around the Manchester area, I never got the sports bug apart from golf so I’d have to say I’m all about Team Europe for the Ryder Cup!

‌Favourite thing to do at the weekend

It’s all about golfing, cooking and walking for me. I’m either playing golf at my home club Hindley Hall or watching golf at home. I live on the edge of a large country park so I also enjoy a Sunday walk and a stop at the local pub for a pint of Guinness.

Find out more about the GCMA Partner Network

By GCMA Content Team

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