Amelia Lewis reflects on being a female in the golf industry

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UK Regional Manager at Players 1st Amelia Lewis reflects on working in the golf industry as #WhyIGolf dedicates today to women working in golf.

What has been special about the industry?

I have been knocked back by the generosity and encouragement from people I have met within the industry. There is a real family feel, and the advice and support I have received has made my first 6 months a real privilege.

Our partnership with England Golf has created some great opportunities to find out more about the club network and national strategies being developed and delivered.

Attending The Open in Portrush has been a major highlight and allowed me to meet contacts in person as well as providing introductions to new ones. Needless to say the atmosphere that golf can create for golfers and non-golfers alike was something special to be a part of.

On the subject of careers in the industry, I have been quite surprised at the variety of roles within golf. As I continue to piece together the diversity of the landscape of the industry, I have discovered a mild fascination with agronomy (essentially the science behind sports turf), something I never thought I’d say!

How did you get into the sport?

As a teenager I worked as a waitress at a local golf club with a friend. Even then, there were very different types of members, from the regular 7 day members, to infrequent playing members and societies.

We had some unfriendly interactions from some female members who were generally unappreciative of all the staff.

As competitive 15 years olds can be, we often joked that these members couldn’t even be that good at golf, and one day we would come back and beat them. 10 years later, we took up golf in group sessions led by at a local club, and have been a ‘golfer’ ever since.

There are so many welcoming play-and-play courses nearby that I am often spoiled for choice and will continue to encourage anyone in my sphere of influence to try the sport in one form or another.

I have recently become a member for the first time this year, and it’s been a great experience, and make a concerted effort to acknowledge the staff. Joining with a flexible membership allows me to bring guests to play at the club during peak times, whilst I also continue to play with friends at other courses without feeling financially burdened.

For all we know, those lady members may well have been scratch players, but ultimately, golf participation grew by two!

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What would you like to change in the industry?

I would like to see the continued developments to grow participation in golf, but not limited to the traditional 4-hour round. I feel there is still demand for this format, but golf clubs need to evolve and modernise their offerings to members and guests to create a thriving business, and club community.

The use of data has been a huge driver of participation in clubs who have taken the leap of faith and become more data led. There are a some exciting companies using data to help support clubs, from managing tee times and dynamic pricing, to digital memberships, personalisation of the member base, as well as the tech supporting professional teaching. Players 1st is playing a part in this data revolution, and I am excited about the journey.

Also, remember to read our blog on five things you (probably) didn’t know about women and golf

Amelia Lewis