Good changes come to those who wait

John Burkholder, Communications Director 9MGA

I met with Wildhorse Golf Club’s new Director of Golf Operations/Service, Roger Martinez, on Tuesday, October 30 for a get acquainted interview in preparation for an introducing Wildhorse’s new Head Golf Professional article for this newspaper. Fortunately, I discovered that Virginia Wheeless and Steve Shepard of the WGA and MGA had beaten me to the punch, as Roger shared with me their similarly conceived article which also appears in this month’s paper. I say fortunately because after speaking with Roger and reading Virginia and Steve’s article the substance of what I envisioned writing about immediately changed for the better! You see, Roger is a true breath of fresh air. So much so that Bob Dylan’s iconic song The Times They are a-Changing immediately came into my head.

Think back to Dylan’s prophetic lyrics.

“Come mothers and fathers throughout the land,

and don’t criticize what you can’t understand

Your sons and daughters

are beyond your command,

Your old road is rapidly agin’

Please get out of the new one

If you can’t lend your hand

For the times they are a-changin’”

That’s exactly the vision I heard Roger articulate during our sit down. I asked Roger, “What’s the most important message you’d like to convey to Wildhorse Golf Club players?” He immediately responded, “‘Just you wait Henry Higgins, just you wait’. Patience. You can’t change a culture overnight.” But that’s Roger’s mission! To change WGC’s culture. From internal to external. From operational to customer focused. From short sighted to long term. From what’s necessary communications to boldly open communications. From staid to exhilarating.

Understand, Roger’s charge here is open and all encompassing. He shared with me that he’s been given “great autonomy and flexibility. If allowed, I would never check out…the hamsters in my head are always running.” And that’s just the kind of leader we need here! As Dylan’s song continues,

“The line is drawn,

The curse it is cast,

The slow one now will

Later be fast,

As the present now

Will later be past

The order is rapidly fadin’

And the first one now

Will later be last

For the times they are a-changin’”

Just think about Dylan’s nonconformist words. “The slow one now will later be fast, as the present now will later be past.” How perceptive. From business as it’s always been to business as it should be; team focused, customer centered, easily understood and openly communicated!