As an avid golfer for the past 31 years, a fan of your game and what you’ve done for the sport, and as a concerned human being, I’m sending you this open letter with unparalleled advice on how to get your “game” back on track. I know you pay the boys from New York big-time dough to help you, but I think they’ve done a crummy job with this recent transgression. You see, I’m a consultant and I know a thing or two about branding, communications, and life balance. It seems you like to use the Internet as your mouthpiece, so I figure this is the best way to reach you. All that being said, let’s get started…
- Fix your family first. If you are serious about what your statement said, then I applaud you. Nothing is more important for you than your wife and children. Looks like you’ve committed about 11 triple-bogeys in a row on the family game. You’re going to need a few extra rounds to get back to even par. This is job #1.
- Stop hiding behind your web site. I know you want privacy, but you can’t be the Tiger Woods brand, rake in a billion dollars, and then want to be left alone. You can’t have it both ways, dude. Take a cue from A-Rod (I can’t believe I wrote that), Letterman, Clinton, Agassi, et al and get your face (battered as it might be) in front of the world and say the things you’re writing on your web site. Sorry, it’s the only way. Right now, it looks and feels like you’re hiding. Chip out of the tall rough and take your medicine with your public.
- Get back on Tour soon. You’re killing the PGA. Just killing it. Last year when you were out with injury, the ratings dropped 50%. 50%! Your buddies on the tour are being forced to respond to questions about you. Your lack of presence will hurt the league, the players, the purses, and everything else involved with the sport. I don’t care if you have to hire some big dude to keep you honest off the course. You owe it to the PGA to get back to doing the thing you do best.
- Get help. You’ve had a dozen coaches help you with your game. Now you need coaches to help you with your marriage, your children, your communications, how you interact with the media, etc.
- Offer to take a pay cut from your sponsors. They can’t even run ads with your image now. Nike, Gatorade, Gillette, Accenture and the rest are in crisis management. As much as you’ve hurt the PGA, the ripple effect goes to them, too. I think you’ve got enough to live on for a few years. Give them a break because you didn’t hold up your end of the bargain.
- Stop being a victim. One of your prior statements chastised the media for interrupting your life. If you’re going to apologize, dump the “I’m sorry, but” language. Your not the victim, man. Whoever wrote that for you should be fired.
- When you do get back on the course, you need to stop swearing, throwing clubs, throwing tantrums, etc. Like it or not, you are a role model for all those kids learning the game and idolizing you. They will still watch you. Take an extra heaping of humility and be a good sport.
- Last one – Get a Life. In order to be a well-rounded human, you need to be more than a one-trick pony. You have the opportunity to influence more than anyone else in the sports world today. Only Babe Ruth, Muhammad Ali, and Michael Jordan have “owned” the owned the stage as a sports star like you have.
I hope you get started on these right away. Some may be painful, but the pain doesn’t last forever unless you let it. My invoice is in the mail. I took a little off because I love the sport and we need you. Don’t let everyone down.
© 2009 Dan Weedin – All Rights Reserved