What Did We Learn From The President’s Cup?

If you are a golf tragic like me you probably stayed glued to your television set all weekend to watch the President’s Cup recently. Some of the world’s best individual golfers brought together in team play. And while we in Australia were supporting Greg Norman’s international team, it was ultimately Fred Couple’s United States of America team who took home the honours.

What lost the tournament for the International team was a game called Foursomes or ‘Alternate Shot’.

The United States team has always had the advantage of a strong grooming in this area all the way back to junior golf, then through the college system and then into senior ranks when their players play this format every year. The internationals do not and so – not unsurprisingly – they were always behind the eight ball, despite Royal Melbourne golf course being described as an advantage to them.

The insight for retail?

If you want to win in retail – just like the President’s Cup – you can’t ignore any areas of the mix, thinking you can pick it up somewhere else.

Despite how good you may be at some aspects of retail execution, all the disciplines must be delivered at a minimum acceptable standard or you lose – both customers and profit. Retail may be simple and straightforward, but – as anyone who has ben doing this for a long time knows – it requires tenacious discipline and inexhaustible amounts of energy.

Your inefficiencies and mistakes – especially when they create poor customer experience or time wasting – can be far more costly than any gain you can make from your strong points.

So the bad news is that the International golf team needs to develop the same level of competency at foursomes that retailers need to develop at the basics of retail. With a strong platform of basic retail competency, the efficiencies you gain provide the operational and financial foundation to take full advantage of your strengths.

That’s what winners do. Eliminate the negatives that detract, to allow the strengths to deliver the win.

Perhaps next President’s Cup we’ll get that right!