I’m having surgery this morning, meaning I will be out of commission for some time. I need the surgery, but it is coming at a time when I have really improved my golf swing, thanks to lessons and practice at GolfTec.

Even if you love playing golf, you may be wondering what is Golftec and what does my learning experience there have to do with learning client development? If you are not interested in golf, skim to the bottom to find out.

If you want to become a better golfer, I recommend you visit GolfTec if there is one in your city or town. How did I find out about it?

Steve, one of my best friends going back now over 45 years had never picked up a golf club in his life. He was a fly fisherman. About 18 months ago he visited GolfTec and I’m fairly confident he has worn out the grip of the 7 iron he’s been using.

A couple of months ago, I made an appointment for an hour long swing evaluation at the GolfTec in Plano, Texas. There I met Doug Smith. (You can see his short bio on the Plano Golf-Tec website.

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The swing evaluation was a huge help. I was hooked up to more advanced technology than I can describe. It measured everything including shoulder turn, hip turn, and swing speed. Then there was the video. I saw my swing from behind and head on. It was eye opening to say the least.

My facial expression while watching my swing that day may have looked something like this.

Funny Man

When we finished Doug asked me for my goals. I told him I wanted to reduce my handicap to a certain number. Then we worked on what I would need to do to get there. In a nutshell I needed to make better contact and do it consistently.

Even though the GolfTec facility is at least 20 minutes from my home in light traffic, I signed up for lessons and practice. At the time, I wasn’t sure what to expect, but at the halfway point, I am really glad I did. If you are interested, I think you will find this review of the GolfTec process helpful.

I am playing better than I have in years and as a result I am having more fun. My last round before the surgery was Saturday afternoon in 100 degrees heat. I shot my best score on that particular course, largely because of a lesson with Doug earlier that morning.

Over the last couple of months, Doug has introduced something new only after he believes I have implemented the last lesson.

We started at the very basics-my grip and my stance. I am reminded of Coach Vince Lombardi. Several years ago I read: When Pride Still Mattered: A Life Of Vince Lombardi. In the book, historian David Maraniss explains what happened when Lombardi walked into training camp in the summer of 1961.

He took nothing for granted. He began a tradition of starting from scratch, assuming that the players were blank slates who carried over no knowledge from the year before… He began with the most elemental statement of all. “Gentlemen,” he said, holding a pigskin in his right hand, “this is a football.”

After the grip and stance, Doug showed me I was swaying in my back swing. So he talked about “turning in a barrel.” I won’t bore you with each step in his coaching and my progress. I will simply say the lesson on Saturday was a breakthrough that I was able to take to the course that afternoon.

Ok, what does my golf experience have to do with client development? I see at least three important things.

  1. Begin with a goal and create a plan to achieve it.
  2. Learn one thing at a time, implement it and then move on to the next thing that builds on what you have learned so far. If you want to delve into the science of how our brain works, take a look at  The Science Behind How We Learn New Skills
  3. For things like public speaking, or a meeting with a client, seeing yourself on video can be really helpful. See: Great Speakers Use Video to Improve Presentation Skills