10 ace jobs for golf lovers
If your career satisfaction is under par, take a swing at one of these great golf jobs.
For many people, golf is a hobby—a fun (and sometimes frustrating) pastime enjoyed while on vacation or while partaking in a “sick” day. But for others, golf is a way of life.
Good news if you’re one of them: The golf industry in the U.S. is in the green. “A total of 2.2 million people took up the game last year, approaching the record of 2.4 million,” Pete Bevacqua, CEO of the PGA of America, told Forbes in 2016. That means there are lots of jobs related to golf available if you’re looking to take a mulligan on your current career path.
Using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and PayScale.com, Monster found 10 jobs for golf fans who want a career that’s a little more than par for the course.
What you’d do: Golf coaches are often involved with more than skills coaching; they can also be responsible for recruiting athletes, maintaining a positive and educational team environment, and coordinating team practices and match days.
What you’d need: Besides having experience in golf and teaching the game and its techniques (whether at a golf camp or golf club), you’ll need great organizational skills and a whole lot of patience, regardless if you’re working at the high school, college, or pro level.
What it pays: $31,000 per year
Golf course superintendent
What you’d do: As the name suggests, a golf course superintendent is in charge of overseeing a well-maintained, top-notch course that keeps players coming back for more rounds. A superintendent manages staff and budgets, hires exceptional talent, and keeps the business profitable.
What you’d need: Many courses require a bachelor's or associate degree in golf course management.
What it pays: $51,960 per year
What you’d do: Landscape architects are the masterminds behind the game. They work with the natural features of the land to design every inch of the perfect course, one that’s both breathtakingly beautiful and athletically challenging.
What you’d need: A degree in landscape architecture, agronomy, civil engineering, or a related field is a base requirement.
What it pays: $63,810 per year
What you’d do: Obviously, pro golfers compete against other each other in various tournaments, but they might also work at courses and country clubs as a coach, manager, or purchaser of merchandise, among other duties.
What you’d need: Tons of practice, exceptional patience, and a drive to keep on driving—even when the bunkers seem like they’re expanding on you.
What it pays: $44,680 per year
Golf merchandise coordinator
What you’d do: Representing one brand or many, merchandise coordinators typically act as spokespeople for golf products at retail locations around the country. They teach retail staff about their brand’s selling points (which are then to be conveyed to consumers), and they also make sure the in-store visual displays adhere to current brand guidelines.
What you’d need: Retail experience, an ability to travel, experience playing or teaching golf, and an ability to interface with and educate golf fans about the latest and greatest products are frequently required.
What it pays: $12.28 per hour
Golf course maintenance worker
What you’d do: To remain in playable conditions, golf courses need a lot of TLC. That’s where golf course maintenance workers come in. From mowing lawns and pruning plant life to repairing equipment and clearing debris, the job keeps you working on and around the course all day.
What you’d need: Golf experience or a passion for the game is often a plus, but mainly you’ll need familiarity with landscaping equipment, and knowledge of how to maintain the various parts of a golf course (greens, sand traps, etc.).
What it pays: $27,460 per year
Golf cart attendant
What you’d do: Let’s face it: Everybody loves zooming around in gorgeous courses in a golf cart. And because of that, cart upkeep is a major necessity. Golf cart attendants are responsible for cleaning equipment, refueling carts, loading clubs on and off the cart, reporting mechanical issues to clubhouse staff, and more.
What you’d need: A high school diploma or equivalent might be required. Great customer service is a must, since you’ll be interacting with club and staff members throughout the day. Attention to detail and organizational skills will also serve you well.
What it pays: $34,650 per year
Golf sales associate
What you’d do: Always looking for the next best set of clubs or golf apparel line? Think you’ve got a knack for selling? Working as a golf sales associate, you’ll keep a store stocked, provide passionate customer service, and ring up fellow golf aficionados. You might also get hired by a brand to help sell their clubs, footwear, and apparel to retail stores.
What you’d need: Retail experience is preferred, but not always required. You’ll need to be patient, friendly, and not mind working on your feet for hours at a time.
What it pays: $22,040 per year
What you’d do: As tee times fill up, someone’s got to keep things on schedule. Golf starters do exactly that—greeting and accounting for guests and communicating course and equipment conditions.
What you’d need: Along with customer service skills, golf starters should know the rules of the game as well as club regulations.
What it pays: $25,610 per year
What you’d do: Those green fairways require a lot of water to keep their lushness in tact. To help Mother Nature along, irrigation technicians install, inspect, and repair the complex system of water lines that keep the turf hydrated and healthy.
What you’d need: Previous relevant experience (especially operating and maintaining equipment) is helpful, and certification will certainly give you a competitive edge. Knowledge of turf, plants, and flowers is a plus.
What it pays: $15.02 per hour