The Pellucid Perspective - September 2021 - 6

FACILITY PERFORMANCE
TRACKING
Knowing Your Numbers: How Leaders Use
it for " Directionally Upward " Planning
By Jim Koppenhaver
I
had a fun and stimulating discussion/debate recently with a
leader of one of our major trade associations. He was playing
devil's advocate and asking me, " Why should the average
owner/operator care about benchmarking if the annual Holy
Grail was simply hitting the budget? "
It's not an uninteresting
question and, in soliciting the ~9K public access, regulationlength
course owner/operators to subscribe to the Golf Market
Research Center over the past 6 months, it's a response/rebuttal
I've gotten more than a few times. My explanation was framed
by the engagement, interest and feedback of our Charter Members
and how they view the world compared to those who have
either deferred or ignored the invitation.
In the six months of working with just under 100 Charter
Members (CMs), here's what I've observed on how they think
about their business and what makes them different than then
vast majority of their peers:
* They were already doing performance tracking in various
shapes and sizes before we came along with GMRC. We
didn't have to convince them of the value of intelligent
tracking of key measures, we just brought them a better,
integrated tool than most were using either in PoS reports/
exports or their Excel machinations
* Budget was a target, not a destination. Particularly in '21
given the extreme variation of golfers and rounds to any type
of pre-'20 " norm " , they were setting realistic targets vs. the 3+
year " norms " but weren't going to stop there if market conditions
and their programming would propel them higher
* They were and are very interested in knowing how their
counterparts, and their market, in general were faring. A
5% gain with the market growing 10% (even if their 5%
met the budget) wasn't success and, conversely, missing
budget on a +5% gain when the market was essentially flat
helps explain " failure " . If the Holy Grail is making your
budget then missing your budget must also constitute abject
failure. Our Charter Clients reject that worldview
* Even in making their budget, our CMs are interested in any
(reasonable) quantification of " how high is up? " Since most
of these owner/operators are successful in their markets and
with their individual P&Ls, they're looking for guidance
on whether their additional " runway " for Rounds and Golf
Revenue is 1K/$50K or whether they're at the apex of
reasonable performance and there's little " blacktop " left
Tom Dailey, a mentor of mine in one of the early startups I
joined after my Kraft corporate education, had a great way of
framing how adoption of new and innovative information services
generally progresses. He said it almost always starts with
6 The Pellucid PersPecTive
restless business managers who are never satisfied with the status
quo. They're often, but not always, leaders in their categories and
generally have the advantage of size/scale (which usually provides
them with an advantage of having more discretionary funds for
exploration and trial). They also have strong ideas about what the
future should look like and enjoy the benefit of helping shape
products in early development by providing active feedback and
using the information extensively. He called these the " offensive
buyers. " What's been interesting to me in the GMRC pilot and
Charter Member engagement and profile is that we're getting
more of a ground-up development curve in the profile in the
folks who've leaned and are helping us shape and scale this. Tom
characterized the offensive buyers as buyers who understood the
benefits and believed in the competitive advantage conferred by
being the first to act upon insights that were different than the
historical market standards. The key, he explained, is to find and
recruit enough offensive buyers that the " defensive buyers " would
now be forced into participation.
The defensive buyers may or
may not see the benefit of the information and new insights but,
at some time, when you're surrounded by offensive buyers in your
marketplace or category, you have to capitulate and figure out
how to use it as well to now maintain competitive parity.
While we're still a considerable distance from the enlightenment
of true benchmarking (the goal would be to have 15 courses
in each of the Top 25 markets participating which would let us do
intra-market benchmarking (Public Regulation Premium, Value
& Price segments or ~500 courses), what we are providing our
CMs is the current aggregation of contributors and 12-15 market-level
summaries of performance monthly across our 7 Key
Performance Indicators (prelim results for the month of August
for our " portfolio " shown in brackets):
* Rounds [-6%]
* Golf Revenue (GRev) [-2%]
* GRev per Played Round (RevpPR) [+4%]
* Capacity Rounds [+3%]
* % Utilization [-7 pts]
* Revenue-per-Available Round (RevpAR) [-5%]
* % Achieved Greens Fee (discount rate) [+1 pt]
What our CMs are gravitating toward in these early stages are
the metrics that can be extended and compared across markets; %
Utilization, RevpAR and % Achieved Greens Fee. While none
of them are jumping off bridges if their numbers aren't headof-the-class
so far (all of them are used to being " above average " ),
they're very interested to see the high and low values for
each measure and where they stand in that continuum. Several
have mentioned that they've made modifications to their pricSeptember
2021

The Pellucid Perspective - September 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of The Pellucid Perspective - September 2021

TOC
Dynamic Pricing: Is it working, will it work the same in ‘22?
GMRC is driving directionally upward plans, dialogues & actions
14 Activities; Transactions outpace closures 3:1 (good or bad?)
August GPH declines 5%, Year-to-Date swings to modest down (-1%)
July Utilization breaks winning streak, Year-to-Date figure still in the 70% neighborhood
Miami occupies #15 in current ranking, pretty even scorecard on upsides/downsides
The Pellucid Perspective - September 2021 - TOC
The Pellucid Perspective - September 2021 - Dynamic Pricing: Is it working, will it work the same in ‘22?
The Pellucid Perspective - September 2021 - 3
The Pellucid Perspective - September 2021 - 4
The Pellucid Perspective - September 2021 - 5
The Pellucid Perspective - September 2021 - GMRC is driving directionally upward plans, dialogues & actions
The Pellucid Perspective - September 2021 - 7
The Pellucid Perspective - September 2021 - 8
The Pellucid Perspective - September 2021 - 9
The Pellucid Perspective - September 2021 - 14 Activities; Transactions outpace closures 3:1 (good or bad?)
The Pellucid Perspective - September 2021 - 11
The Pellucid Perspective - September 2021 - August GPH declines 5%, Year-to-Date swings to modest down (-1%)
The Pellucid Perspective - September 2021 - 13
The Pellucid Perspective - September 2021 - July Utilization breaks winning streak, Year-to-Date figure still in the 70% neighborhood
The Pellucid Perspective - September 2021 - 15
The Pellucid Perspective - September 2021 - Miami occupies #15 in current ranking, pretty even scorecard on upsides/downsides
The Pellucid Perspective - September 2021 - 17
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