One of the biggest mistakes that planners make is not giving themselves enough time to get the job done. Time is essential when working with volunteers. They only have a couple of hours per week to give you. Give them as much time to do their job as you can.
Creating a timeline will give everyone direction and a guide to stay on track. Here is a sample of a timeline that you can use to keep your team on track.
1 Year in Advance
Start getting ready for next year’s event
If you have just held your event, get a survey out to all golfers and get their opinions.
Find out if they liked the golf course, the format, food and if they feel like they received value.
Pull your committee together and do a wrap-up meeting.
Evaluate what went right and what went wrong.
Choose a golf course and date for next year.
Send out a save the date to all potential golfers; email or postcard.
Contact this year’s sponsors and get them committed for next year.
Create sponsor packages and start talking to the bigger sponsors.
Start identifying new potential committee members.
6 Months in Advance
Fill your open committee positions.
Develop the complete business plan
Finalize the golf course and schedule details
Continue selling sponsors
Create a detailed budget
Create golfer packages
Start your committee meetings
Secure Title Sponsor
Create a logo for the event
5 Months in Advance
Build database of golfers
Get quotes on Gifts and Prizes
Develop Marketing Plan
4 Months in Advance
Create Auction and acquire items
Start recruiting golfers
Secure Media Partner
Set up website
3 Months in Advance
Press Release Out
Start marketing and advertising
Sign up golfers
Continue to sell sponsors
2 Months in Advance
Collect gifts and prizes
Finalize games and contests
Secure real time scoring
1 Month in Advance
Get signs made
Confirm all golfers and get payments
Volunteer orientation meeting
Order food & beverage
2 Weeks Out
Committee meeting onsite
Order food and beverages
Confirmation email to golfers
Sign up deadline for golfers
1 Week Out
Send golfer pairings to the golf course
Confirm numbers with golf course
Your schedule may vary but these are the key ingredients to hosting your event. The important thing is to create a detailed schedule comprising each action item and who is responsible for it, when it should be started and when it should be completed. The Tournament Chairman should keep everyone on track and hold everyone accountable for accomplishing their task.
The two most important things for any tournament are sponsors and golfers. The time line will help you get organized and stay on track in getting sponsors and golfers.