My new job: Gareth Morgan

We talk to GCMA members who have recently changed jobs to learn about their new role, and to share advice on successfully navigating the recruitment process. This week, we feature Minchinhampton's new general manager - and GCMA vice chair - Gareth Morgan. Gareth reveals how he nearly missed out on the opportunity completely, how he answered the toughest interview question, and a key piece of advice for anyone looking for a new job. How did you hear about the job at Minchinhampton? That's complicated! Minchinhampton advertised and went through the recruitment process a couple of times, but I didn’t actually apply for the job originally. I was very happy in my role at Long Ashton. We had a great team, things were going well and we had a nice membership who were pleasant to work with. Then Timberlake Golf got involved - ironically at my recommendation after some of the Minchinhampton board had visited Long Ashton. I had worked with Ian Timberlake in the past, and I trust his confidentiality and integrity, so I became involved in the conversation. I then met with the Minchinhampton directors a couple of times, and once the offer was made there was only really going to be one answer. What was the application process? Once I did declare an interest, the first interview was very general. They had given me some paperwork in advance to get an idea about the ins and outs of the club, and it was a fairly informal interview of about an hour. Then the second and final meeting with them was a presentation on finance, operations, and a plan for the first 60/90 days, followed by some questions on that presentation. What do you think you've learned from the process that could help fellow managers who are in the same position? I suppose this is almost a reverse lesson from this process, because Minchinhampton were pretty good, and they gave me some information, but, having been through a few other recruitment processes in the past, I’ve often found it a problem that I’ve gone into the first interview and the only information I can find is what's on the website. So, I would say it’s important to try and find any information that you can - outside of what's publicly available - to try and gain an impression about what you're walking into. For example, when I went to Long Ashton I had a phone call with one of the committee members who wanted to ask some questions, and I actually ended up quizzing him for about 10 minutes about membership numbers, the staffing structure and those sorts of things, just to try and get some information that I could start to form a few ideas around. Because otherwise you are very much walking in blind if all you can find is what's on a website. You'll immediately start talking about their Twitter and Facebook accounts, because you'll talk about the things that are publicly viewable and they're just...
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