The Annual FEGGA Conference and AGM took place in Platja D'Aro, Spain recently.
24 Greenkeeper Associations were represented by some 80 delegates and Patrons. These included BIGGA Chairman Chris Sealey and Chief Executive Officer Jim Croxton, as well as Rhett Evans, Chief Exec of the GCSAA.
The first day of the two-day conference was held at PGA De Catalunya which is Spains Number 1 golf complex comprising 36 holes of Championship golf set within a secluded location 15 minutes from the historic city of Girona.
The Superintendent David Bataller gave an enthusiastic account of the establishment of the club, whose business mantra is "ski in the morning, play championship golf in the afternoon", and took us through fascinating maintenance plans and future development plans.
Ransomes Jacobsen gave us a full tour of the course and ecology work, John Deere challenged us to look at the industry and answer some searching questions, Syngenta took us through sprayer maintenance and calibration while Campey and Toro brought along some of the latest golf course aeration and mowing equipment.
PGA Catalunya ha ve the finest practice facility in Europe with a 2000 square metre Chipping and pitching facility which incorporates recreations of some of the world's most famous bunkers such as the Road-hole bunker, an Augusta bunker and a volcanic sand bunker.
Day 2 saw a classroom type conference which included a real "I Was There" session when Rhett Evans, CEO of the GCSAA defined exactly what it is we should be striving for as Associations.
1) Work out an achievable coherent Vision and then clearly communicate it
2) Meet/exceed your customers or stakeholders needs through 'superior operational execution'
3) Make your organisation easy to work with and in
These tenets are so simple and we can apply them in all our various Associations - and even back in our Sections e.g. clear communication with our members, meeting our members' needs, and making it as simple as possible for a member to be involved in Section events.This is really good stuff.
The FEGGA AGM saw a robust discussion relating to proposed Constitutional changes to introduce a formal Regional structure within Europe.
While the meeting wasn't quite ready to accept this straight off, the Board are sufficiently encouraged by the responses to develop the proposal over this coming year.
FEGGA will also take a number of R&A-sponsored Roadshows into Europe over the coming year to bring training to areas where there are relatively few golf courses & greenkeepers to increase opportunities for personal development.
In short a really positive and useful couple of days. FEGGA would like to thank PGA Catalunya, and major partners Ransomes-Jacobsen, Toro, John Deere, Syngenta, and Campey.