001 | An Insider Look at the 2024 Superintendent Employment Report with Pat Jones

Episode 001

An Insider Look at the 2024 Superintendent Employment Report

with guest Pat Jones

We’re thrilled to bring you the first episode of the Leadership on the Links podcast with guest expert Pat Jones!

Pat has been a passionate advocate for superintendents and the golf industry for 30 years. As head of Flagstick LLC, he uses that passion to help organizations communicate with customers and drive sales more effectively and efficiently.

Pat has been a business media executive for most of his adult life, profitably steering the sales and editorial operations of Golf Course Industry, Lawn & Landscape, Golfdom, and GCM. He specializes in researching and tracking the state of the golf course maintenance market and shining a spotlight on the industry’s best people, practices, and products. Pat is also a frequent keynoter at conferences and industry events.

In this episode, Pat and Tyler break down our recent 2024 Golf Course Superintendent Employment Trend Report, including steps you can take to market yourself more effectively and prepare for the next level in your career. 

The #1 Skill Golf Course Superintendents Want to Learn

We had over 300 respondents for our 2024 Golf Course Superintendent Employment Trend Report, but what was most interesting was the qualitative data. The verbatim comments provided deep insights into how satisfied superintendents are with their careers, what worries them, and what they need to go to the next level.

Although some superintendents mentioned the need for certifications or better leadership skills, the overwhelming majority felt they needed to become better communicators–to tell their stories, expand their network of contacts, and sell themselves more effectively. 

In general, our respondents felt good about their jobs, but 43% said they were waiting for the next opportunity to come along (either within their organization or at another club), which makes communication even more vital. 

Pat recommends superintendents share their goals with their team and board members regularly. Keep people informed about what you’re doing and why. Not only is this a great way to hone your communication skills, but it will also position you for that next opportunity when it becomes available.

Biggest Challenges

The biggest worry for superintendents in 2024 is managing club expectations. Many respondents said they feel pressure to create perfect course conditions, even though they don’t have the resources.

The other major theme was work-life balance. Superintendents are increasingly standing firm on work-life balance, with 80% actively working on improving their well-being

Gone are the days when superintendents were happy to put in 90-hour weeks and miss their kids’ baseball games. Many respondents said they’ve started communicating with their leadership about mental health, while others are working on their own internalized expectations and making more time for family, hobbies, and exercise.

Hit play on this episode to hear the full report breakdown with insights from Pat Jones…


“That’s what this industry is all about, the relationships and the people we’ve gotten to know over the years.”

“It’s a small, small business…if you know a couple hundred people, chances are pretty good you can be successful with those relationships.”

“Networking and communications–it all comes back to that.”

“Train, trust, and delegate.”

“The #1 piece of advice for building a good team and being a good leader and a good manager of people was to get to know them as human beings and not just as somebody who punches a clock.”

Links mentioned in this episode:

The Flagstick Blog: https://www.patjonesflagstick.com/ 

Connect with Pat on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/pat-jones-226766b0/ 

Send Pat an email: patjonesgolf@gmail.com

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Tyler Bloom

Who is Tyler Bloom?

Tyler Bloom is the leading expert on workforce development in the golf and turfgrass industry. He has worked with dozens of leading golf and sports companies in the United States including The PGA of America, Top 100 golf courses, public, municipal to professional sports teams, universities, and national historic landmarks.