Nothing beats golf as a corporate sport. Chairmen and CEOs of major corporations with hectic and busy schedules still manage to make time for the four to five hours it takes for an 18 hole round of golf. Why ?
Are they really enjoying exercising on lush green fairways, sparkling greens, and immaculate surroundings? Or are they just trying to strike another business deal?
Before going further into this question, let's quickly look at some of the benefits of this sport. It can safely be said that golf is a life-long sport that can be enjoyed at any age. A golfer gets to walk up to 8 km reasonably briskly in natural surroundings away from the hustle and bustle of city life, keeps fit, and burns off quite a few calories while enjoying a challenging sport.
Being a relatively expensive sport, achievers know they will meet the right economic class of people to build up their contacts. Possibly the most interesting point is that for at least half the time the game is played, there is the opportunity and privilege of chatting with fellow competitors. No other sport provides this kind of possibility.
You should have guessed by now that, in reality the game is the perfect answer for both exercise and business. It is said that, businessmen can do more business while playing golf than from the corporate office. Actual business deals are cemented on a golf course, and just the paper work is done back in the office. Corporate golfers know how difficult it often is in getting a business appointment with other corporate golfers during the week, but how much easier it is to fix up tee time with them for the weekend.
In most countries, top businessmen, government officials and ministers, and high ranking bureaucrats play golf, and this attracts more professionals and businessmen to take up the game. Undoubtedly this is a business and social sport.
Being the favourite corporate sport, golf generates higher sponsorships than any other sport. This has given great impetus to the game and it is also one of the main reasons behind the substantial prize money for professional golf. Big successful corporations are the main sponsors, an opportunity that is still only slowly being taken up in our country. Corporations like to advertise their products and brands through the medium of golf and reap the benefits of awareness, publicity, and goodwill, producing a perfect win-win situation for both golf and the corporate world.
Deepak Acharya is a golf instructor and Head Golf Professional at Gokarna Forest Golf Resort & Spa, Kathmandu. [email protected]