® 3Planning to Address Club Facility Needs 62022 Excellence In Club Management® Awards Dinner 8Industry-Wide Club Dining Survey Celebrating the 2022 Award Winners! McMahon Report® THE T H E S O U R C E F O R P R I V A T E C L U B E X C E L L E N C E™ JULY 2022
ABOUT MCMAHON GROUP Our Mission: “To be the premier, full- service, club and HOA consulting firm dedicated to private club excellence by providing clubs, communities and their management with the best possible facility and strategic planning expertise to promote each club’s and community’s well being, to enhance the profession of management and to assist presidents and boards in their delivery of effective governance.” Family and management owned since 1983 with an outstanding professional staff. We have served clubs and communities throughout the world in all aspects. 39 YEARS I N BUSI NESS OVER 2000 CLUBS SERVED OVER 150 HOA’S SERVED McMahon Group, Inc. 670 Mason Ridge Center Drive, Suite 220 St. Louis, Missouri 63141 • 314.744.5040 firstname.lastname@example.org www.mcmahongroup.com www.clubmanageraward.com www.clubleadershipalliance.com www.mcmahoncommunity.com For more information or to schedule a First Impression Visit, please contact Alison McMahon at email@example.com. WHATWE OFFER • Strategic Planning and Implementation • Facility Planning and Funding Programs • Membership Surveys and Research • Operations Consulting • HOA Community Consulting $3 BILLION RAI SED CONNECT WITH US ONLINE FOR VIDEOS, BROCHURES AND EVEN MORE UP TO DATE CLUB INFORMATION! 2 The McMahon Report® Florida | Missouri | Nevada | NewHampshire | Ontario | Pennsylvania | South Carolina FROM THE PRESIDENT Back to Reality After the times required a virtual presentation in 2021 of our annual Excellence in Club Management® Awards, we were thrilled to once again be able to present them “live and in person” this year, through the ceremony and dinner held for the 2022 ECM honorees in Charleston, South Carolina on May 15. And as the photos on pgs. 5-7 of this McMahon Report® show, we had a very special and unique venue for the 25th year of the Awards, which the McMahon Group established in 1997 and for which the National Club Association has been a co-sponsor since 2018. After a cocktail reception in the courtyard of Charleston Place, the host hotel for this year’s National Club Conference, attendees and guests walked across the street to the historic Riviera Theater, a restored 1930s-era movie house that now serves as one of the city’s premier event locations. As they arrived, guests were greeted with refreshments that included specially designed boxes of popcorn, and everyone walked up to settle into the theater’s balcony seats for the presentations and acceptance remarks from our 2022 ECM honorees: • M. Kent Johnson, CCM, ECM, General Manager/COO, Baltimore Country Club, Baltimore, Md.—winner of The James H. Brewer Award, for a manager of a Country/ Golf Club with 600 or more full-privilege members • Michael Stacks, ECM, General Manager, Indian Hills Country Club, Mission Hills, Kan.—winner of The Mead Grady Award, for a manager of a Country/Golf Club with fewer than 600 full-privilege members • Steve Cummings, CCM, CCE, ECM, General Manager, Harvard Club of Boston, Boston, Mass.—winner of The Mel Rex Award, for a manager of a City, Athletic or Specialty (Non-Golf) Club • Tai Tran, CCM, ECM, Assistant General Manager, Detroit Athletic Club, Detroit, Mich.— winner of The “Rising Star” Award for an assistant club manager After the awards ceremony was completed, the theater’s curtains parted and everyone descended into the Riviera’s spacious dining room for a delicious dinner that included special touches such as custom-made cookies (see photo, bottom right of pg. 6) that featured the logos of all of the winners’ clubs, as well as of the ECM Awards, the National Club Conference and the Awards Ceremony and Dinner’s sponsors, Kopplin Kuebler & Wallace and La Crema wines. Special recognition and thanks goes to Alison McMahon, Bryan Beckmann and April Huber of McMahon Group, and to John Good and the entire National Club Association team for all they did to orchestrate the event and attend to all of the details that helped to ensure such a memorable evening. We are also holding individual presentation ceremonies at the 2022 winners’ clubs throughout this year—and already beginning to plan for how to build on this year’s spectacular event, as we start the next quarter-century of this important recognition program for industry leaders and prepare to honor the 2023 ECMwinners at next year’s National Club Conference in Chicago. As well, we anticipate (and welcome) a busy remainder of 2022, including some of the other activities and programs described in this issue of The McMahon Report®, and extend our best wishes for everyone’s continued success through the second half of this year. Sincerely, Frank Vain, President
While having waiting lists for future members is a wonderful opportunity for our clubs, it is a challenge each club has to address. Overcrowding can destroy the very reason members joined in the first place. To get control of this new popularity for membership, each club has to look to its own strategic plan and refresh it, to reflect a new understanding of what today’s members want their club to be. Our challenge now is that we have the members wanting to join, but we don’t have the adequate facilities to serve them. Each club Board and manager needs to have a strategic plan guiding their facility and program needs, so they are providing the club their members want. By planning new facilities strategically through an understanding of what needs to be achieved in member services and quality, rather than building quick-fix projects, clubs have a great opportunity to continue to expand their memberships and maintain optimum levels of service and satisfaction. REFRESHER STRATEGIC PLANNING Almost all clubs today have a strategic plan, but times have changed from clubs searching for members to members searching for clubs. This is requiring clubs to refresh their strategic plans with updated missions and goals to be successful. Once a club understands its mission of who it is serving and what its members want, it is easy to achieve its facility goals. However, we are still finding clubs that build facilities first and then refresh their strategic plans. This is a backward approach. At McMahon Group, with our thousands of club improvement programs, we have developed the Strategic Planning Refresher for all types of clubs, to assure that a club’s strategic plan is in alignment with its facility planning. This is a brief, twomonth planning exercise done with the Board and manager to refresh a club’s mission, goals and action plans and address the most important opportunities available to a club. Then, when facility improvements and additions are needed to better serve expanding memberships, a club’s leadership and management are well prepared to act wisely. C lubs today are improving and adding facilities as never before. Members are joining city and country clubs in record numbers. The challenge is to not just expand facilities, but to do so with strategic objectives in mind, so the facilities serve to achieve a club’s mission of driving high member satisfaction. We now know golf play has exceeded most clubs’ ability to provide it at the required level of quality. Clubs are having to deal with this in newways. And nowwe are also seeing other club offerings get overcrowded at swimming pools, fitness facilities, dining areas, etc. Clubs are having to stop accepting newmembers because their facilities are inadequate to properly serve them. The club world is changing, and so is the way facility planning is being done. Locker-room use is declining, fitness/spa areas are growing and members want year-round club usage. Not only are many country clubs enjoying long waiting lists for new members, but the great city clubs like the Missouri Athletic Club and Detroit Athletic Club now have waiting lists for future members. The McMahon Report® 3 STRATEGIC PLANNING Planning Strategically to Address Club Facility Needs From Expanding Memberships by William P. McMahon, Sr., - AIA, OAA - Chairman Fa cility Refresher™ THE PRIVATE CLUB STRATEGIC PLANNING P R I V A T E C L U B P L A N N E R S & C O N S U L T A N T S ® T H E S O U R C E F O R P R I V A T E C L U B E X C E L L E N C E ™ F O R C L U B S W I T H A N D W I T H O U T S T R A T E G I C P L A N S A S S U R I N G B O A R D S & M A N A G E R S D A C H I E V E F A C I L I T Y S U C C E S S T H E 1 - D AY C O N S U LT I N G S E R V I C E A S S U R I N G C L U B S S TAY O N T H E P A T H T O F A C I L I T Y A N D M E M B E R S H I P S U C C E S S
The wide-ranging discussion included the ECMwinners’ comments and thoughts on a variety of subject areas brought up by Frank Vain—everything from lessons learned from their own personal mentors during their lives and careers, to the importance of building and sustaining workplace cultures that lead to attraction and retention of staff, to keys for effective governance and successful relationships with club Presidents, Boards and Committees. The panel discussion can be viewed in its entirety at https://www.youtube. com/watch?v=xzCllsJHXYs (no registration required). Here are selected highlights of the panelists’ responses to questions posed by Frank Vain: 2022 ECMWinners Featured on National Club Conference Panel Charleston, South Carolina A fter being honored the previous night during the Excellence in Club Management (ECM) Awards Presentation and Dinner (see pgs. 6-7), the four recipients of the 2022 ECM Awards participated in a panel discussion, moderated by Frank Vain, President of McMahon Group, as part of the educational agenda for the National Club Conference held in Charleston, South Carolina from May 15-17. Who were some of your own personal mentors, and what were some of the valuable lessons you learned from them? Steven Cummings, Harvard Club of Boston: Some things that some of my past Presidents told me come to mind. At Brae Burn Country Club, where I was General Manager of a big club at 28 years old, one President told me, “Don’t let it go to your head—and do the right thing.” Another told me two really important things: “Luxury, once tasted, becomes a necessity,” and “The farther up the pole you go, the more your rear end is showing.” M. Kent Johnson, Baltimore Country Club: I grew up in a small town where my father ran a construction company. When I was eight years old, someone blew up their house when they hit a gas line while digging in their yard. My father woke me up and took me with him as his company started to rebuild the man’s house. It was my earliest lesson in hospitality that I wouldn’t recognize until years later, but it’s truly been one of my more impactful memories, and the brand of hospitality that we strive to employ is deeply rooted in those types of connections. What are the keys to stability in a career as a club manager? Michael Stacks, Indian Hills Country Club (the Club’s GM since 2002): Find a place that fits you and your management style. And it’s how you feel and the energy you project when you walk in that door every day. You have to come in with a great attitude; whatever attitude you might be feeling inside, you don’t let it be seen—you let everyone see what you expect them to be. If they buy in to your philosophy, as a leader and as a culture, the ‘first day’ is every day. What are proving to be the biggest challenges that have come out of the pandemic? Tai Tran, Detroit Athletic Club: The hardest hit for us has been on the banquet/events side. We normally do about $8 million a year in banquets and events, and are trying to get back to that level, but are only about halfway there. The a la carte side is doing very well, exceeding 2018-19 numbers. But big parties aren’t hapQ Q Q 4 The McMahon Report®
pening anymore, so we’re doing smaller events, and that takes some toll on our banquet staff and we’re focusing on rebuilding our banquet team. We’re getting pretty creative in howwe recruit, offering new-hire retention bonuses and getting referrals through employees who are trying to recruit through the churches they go to. Once we get them in the door, our orientation process is pretty comprehensive—they go through our Culture Workbook so they can get on board early and we make sure they understand the DAC culture and membership. But because we’re a year-round club, recruiting at colleges is tough, because we don’t have summer or winter seasons. Our chef has been a professor at a culinary college, so that’s helped with kitchen staff. But in the front of house, we’re still struggling. What lessons have been learned, especially through challenges posed by the pandemic, about effective governance and Board/committee structure and management? M. Kent Johnson: We’ve really tried to be focused on building our committees back the right way, with no single-issue or single-minded folks on any committee, a vetting process for what it takes to even get on a committee now, and making sure we have the right mix of men and women and ages represented and that they’re all focused on the same goal. Michael Stacks: You want the people who really love their club to be part of what’s driving all of the policies and programs. We send out an interest form to all of our members, to see who wants to be on a committee and what they’re interested in. We get 30 to 40 responses from that each year and that’s who we go to. It’s no longer ‘I want all my fraternity brothers on the committee’; nowwe have structure and it really works, especially in this climate. What’s ahead for the future at your clubs? Tai Tran: We see a lot of demand from our membership now for programming that’s outside the four walls of the DAC. As an example, I took about 220 members last year to The Breakers in Florida, and this year we’ll go back with maybe 250. We’re hoping to build on that to add more member experiences and value to their membership. We have an eight-story building, but are busting at the seams sometimes and have overcapacity inside the building, so it’s nice to be able to do things with members that are not only “outside the box” but “outside the building,” and we’re looking to do more of that. Steven Cummings: We have a project that is in the permitting stage with the city of Boston. The annex to our main clubhouse, which includes squash courts and locker rooms on multiple levels, is not handicapped accessible, and the cost to make it accessible is extraordinary. So we started looking at development opportunities and formed a partnership with a developer to plan about a $135 million project that would raze the existing building and put up a new 11-story building. We’d have 20,000 sq. ft. to ourselves, for space that would include a new locker room, squash complex and fitness facility. There would be about 100 luxury apartments above that, and also a rooftop amenity that we would own and operate. We also have the last surface parking lot on our street and there’s a plan to build an underground/aboveground garage with another 30 apartments. We’d do it through a 75-year ground-lease, after which the Club will take back all the assets. So for our share, we’re getting about $30 million in new facilities and also getting some cash payments from the ground-lease. It’s going to be about an 18-month to 2-year project and there’s a lot of work to do, to find temporary squash facilities and solve parking issues—the plan is to be open completely during the renovation. But it’s pretty exciting. Q Q The McMahon Report® 5
McMahon Group and the National Club Association were ecstatic to host the 2022 Excellence in Club Management® Awards Ceremony & Dinner at The Riviera Theater! This is the program’s 25th year of honoring the best of the best club executives in the private club industry. Once again, we were also excited to recognize the Award namesakes James H. Brewer, Mead Grady and Mel Rex for lending their support and names to the Awards. We also want to thank and ask your support of this year’s Awards Dinner Sponsor: Kopplin Kuebler & Wallace. 2022Excellence in Club Management® Awards Ceremony & Dinner 6 The McMahon Report®
Special thanks to our sponsors! The McMahon Report® 7 David Chag, CCM, Chairman.........................................................The Country Club Mark Bado, ECM, MCM, CCE. .............................................. Houston Country Club Steven Buck, CCM, CCE. .......................................................... The Stock Farm Club Lynn Butler................................................................................................... Bogey Club Robert Crifasi, ECM, CCM............................................New Orleans Country Club John Dorman, ECM, CCM. ................................. The University Club of New York Patrick King, ECM, CCM, CCE. .........................................Army Navy Country Club Joseph Krenn, ECM, CCM, CCE...................................... Farmington Country Club Brian Kroh, ECM, CCM. ..................................................................John’s Island Club Jeffrey McFadden, ECM, CCM, CCE. ............ The Union League of Philadelphia Joseph Murphy. ............................................................................ The Thornhill Club John Schultz, ECM, CCM Anne Stryhn, ECM, CCM............................................The Country Club of Virginia Crystal Thomas, ECM, MCM, CHE, CAE.........CMAA The Golden State Chapter Chairmen Emeritus Kevin Carroll, ECM, CCM, CCE Phil Kiester, ECM, CCM..............................................The Country Club of Virginia Jeffrey Kreafle............................................................. Congressional Country Club Kevin Vitale, CCM..........................................................................Baltusrol Golf Club David Voorhees, ECM, CCM, CCE AWARD S E L E C T I ON COMM I T T E E MEMB E RS
8 The McMahon Report® DINING by Chris Coulter - VP of Club Consulting Industry-Wide Club Dining Survey Learning From Members How to Drive Dining Success their club to be one of their 4 or 5 favorite everyday places to dine, but only 46% of members say it actually is. Thus the need for getting serious about having good, consistent food (not gourmet) at a person’s club. McMahon Group with other well respected culinary and financial consultants are offering club managers a targeted dining survey for their members to provide input on their own club’s dining program so managers can compare their club’s results with McMahon’s National Club Database on Dining. O f all club offerings today, dining is most important and most challenging in getting right. While dining may not be the most important reason members join, it is the most important reason for member retention. Dining at clubs today has the most positive impact in driving overall club satisfaction. It pays to get it right. McMahon has surveyed over two thousand clubs in our 39 years of club service, and we have found club dining in need of a special membership survey on how to drive dining success. Over 70% of clubs we survey have dining deficiencies. Over 90% of club members want WE NEED YOUR HELP In delivering this type of club dining survey, McMahon is asking managers for help in determining what information they and their culinary teams need to help each club improve its own dining program. The proposed dining survey would be sent electronically to each adult member, would have a standard questionnaire design with one writein question specifically targeted for just that club, would have results for each club compared to the national database, would have all clubs’ specific results kept private and would be done annually. The survey cost per club would be under $2900. Anyone interested in participating in such a dining survey should please contact McMahon today.
The McMahon Report® 9 NEW/RETURNING CLIENTS Army Navy Country Club (VA) Baltimore Country Club (MD) Bedens Brook Club (NJ) Belfair Plantation (SC) Bird Key Yacht Club (FL) Boca Woods Country Club (FL) Canebrake Club (AL) Carriage Club (MO) Chagrin Valley Hunt Club (OH) Charlotte Country Club (NC) Cherokee Country Club (TN) The Chicago Club (IL) Collier’s Reserve Country Club (FL) Concord Country Club (MA) Country Club of Charleston (SC) Country Club of Louisiana (LA) Country Club of New Canaan (CT) Country Club of Peoria (IL) Diablo Country Club (CA) Emerald Bay Community Association (CA) Essex County Country Club (NJ) Flagstaff Ranch Golf Club (AZ) Hideaway Golf Club (CA) Horseshoe Bay Golf Club (WI) Hunters Run Country Club (FL) Ironwood Country Club (CA) The Lakes Country Club (CA) The Laredo Country Club (TX) Maple Bluff Country Club (WI) Merion Cricket Club (PA) Nantucket Yacht Club (MA) Orchid Island Golf & Beach Club (FL) Rancho La Quinta Country Club (CA) River Valley Ranch (CO) The Rockaway Hunting Club (NY) Sankaty Head Golf Club (MA) The Santaluz Club (CA) Sawgrass Country Club (FL) Shelter Harbor Yacht Club (RI) Stock Farm Club (MT) Union League of NY (NY) Wellesley Country Club (MA) EXISTING CLIENTS American Yacht Club (NY) Applebrook Golf Club (PA) Atlanta Athletic Club (GA) Bishops Bay Country Club (WI) Bridges at Rancho Santa Fe (CA) Country Club of Naples (FL) Davenport Country Club (IA) Great Harbor Yacht Club (MA) Green Tree Country Club (TX) Greenwich Country Club (CT) IronOaks at Sun Lakes (AZ) Isla Del Sol Yacht & Country Club (FL) Lake Carroll Association (IL) Little Harbor Club (MI) Manor Country Club (MD) New Orleans Country Club (LA) Outdoor Resort Palm Springs (CA) The Field Club of Omaha (NE) The Country Club of Orlando (FL) The Plantation Golf Club (CA) The Springs (CA) Two Rivers Country Club (VA) Westmoreland Club (PA) White Cliffs Country Club (MA) MCMAHON GROUP IS PROUDLY SERVING THE CLUBS AND HOA’S LISTED OVER 2000 CLUBS SERVED Steven Cummings, ECM, CCM, CCE (C) David Chag, CCM (L), and Chris Coulter, CCM, ECM (R) Steven receiving his Mel Rex Award at the Harvard Club of Boston on June 14th. We celebrated with over 200 guests! Congratulations Steve!
PULSE SURVEY Club Accommodations Bill McMahon, Jr. - Director of Research Do you have overnight accommodations? Has the number of rooms increased or decreased from prior to the pandemic? 75% 25% INCREASED DECREASED When asked whether the additions they are planning are for members to use directly, 9% of respondents replied “yes,” with 8.1% saying that their additions are for member guests. DATED ROOMS were the main reason clubs renovated their overnight accommodations within the last 5 years. 23 PERCENT of clubs have considered adding condominiums on their grounds for members to live in. Do non-member guests have full club privileges when using overnight accommodations? Are accommodations a driver for membership? When was the last time you renovated rooms? NO Other 37% 20% 33% 80% 67% NO YES YES 1 - 3 years ago 63% 70% NO YES 30% In March of this year, McMahon Group conducted a Pulse Survey of private clubs asking about overnight accommodations. Below are some highlights from the report: Dear Bill, Thank you for being such a vital link to the success of so many managers, clubs, Boards, and memberships in our industry. I am honored to be part of such a renowned fraternity of ECM Managers. It is all because of your vision and commitment that our hard work and dedication to our craft is recognized. You deserve the accolades right along side of all of us. We appreciate you and your team! “ ” Michael Stacks, ECM - Indian Hills Country Club 10 The McMahon Report®
career experience leading and participating in chapter activities themselves, as they work with chapter Boards and those involved with affiliated foundations to: • Study the major issues affecting the chapter • Identify and prioritize goals for chapter success • Develop action plans and steps for their implementation The Refresher process begins by having Board members complete a brief, online survey to help develop the primary objectives for the planning session and identify the major chapter issues needing resolution. A Refresher planning meeting is then moderated by McMahon principals, to facilitate a discussion of those issues and establish a plan for addressing and resolving them. After the Refresher session, McMahon provides a summary report with specific strategic recommendations for how to prioritize and pursue the goals that have been established. After a Strategic Planning Refresher with the Wisconsin Badger Chapter, Managing Director Kathy Collins provided these insights into the value and takeaways that the session provided: “Chris Coulter and Kevin Carroll facilitated an interactive, productive and forward-looking discussion with our Chapter and Foundation Board of Directors. They conducted the discussion in an extremely positive manner, making sure everyone’s voice was heard. They assisted us in highlighting what we are doing well, while also identifying areas where we can grow, evolve and enhance the value of membership to our chapter members and corporate partners.” “Action items have been clearly identified and the path is paved to success,” Collins added. “We wrapped up this tremendous day identifying that our two Boards will come together more often to work this new plan together.” For more details on Strategic Planning Refresher sessions and how one can be arranged for your CMAA chapter, contact Alison McMahon, Marketing Director, at firstname.lastname@example.org or 314-744-5040. T he McMahon Group’s Strategic Planning Refresher service helps CMAA local chapters ensure that their strategies and programming are on target to provide maximum benefits and value for their memberships. The new challenges presented by the post-pandemic period has created renewed interest in the Refresher service, the McMahon team has recently conducted sessions for the Golden State, New England and Wisconsin Badger Chapters. Additionally, in February McMahon presented a session about the service at the CMAAWorld Conference in San Diego. “Just as clubs themselves are now refocusing on how to keep their members engaged as we emerge from COVID, the CMAA chapters have identified the same need, to make sure they are serving their members with timely and relevant content and services,” says Coulter. For the one-day Strategic Planning Refresher session, McMahon consultants draw on their extensive The McMahon Report® 11 McMahon’s Refresher Service Revives Strategic Planning for CMAA Local Chapters by Kevin Carroll - VP of Club Consulting STRATEGIC PLANNING
T H E S O U R C E F O R P R I V A T E C L U B E X C E L L E N C E™ BoardRoom magazine’s industry peers and experts reviewed and selected McMahon Group as one of the outstanding suppliers and consultants, representing various aspects of course and club operations. Winners, each year, are selected for overall excellence in their respective fields, achievements, innovation, vision for future growth and continued impact on private club operations. BoardRoom Magazine 2021 Master Planning & Member Survey Firm of the Year! Facility Planning: The McMahon Way of planning develops feasible projects which members review, approve and fund before construction architects and contractors get involved. This makes sure the right projects are built to achieve each club’s strategic goals. Our principals serve Clubs in many ways. We are not only facility planners, survey specialists and strategic planners, but most importantly, we know how to build consensus in Clubs so projects get built. Survey: The primary goal for surveying members is to learn valuable information from the people who know your Club best - your membership. The goal is to make your members a part of every strategic and facility solution. The McMahon Survey is that essential first step in solving problems, addressing controversial issues and planning for your facilities. With a McMahon Survey you will have the best strategic and facility planning specialists available to you. Strategic Planning: Every Club’s Strategic Plan should relate to its own circumstances. McMahon’s process is customized to each Club’s situation and often requires an initial membership survey. The process addresses long-range and short-term challenges and gives a Club, its leadership and management the ability to control and shape their future by having the best and most knowledgeable consultants in the industry not only in developing the plan, but also in implementing it. We Can Help Make Your Club Successful - Click to download our brochures today!