We’ve heard it time and time again, being able to play golf is extremely beneficial in the business world. And for the ladies, it might be even more important to make sure you’re included in the conversation. But there can be some scary and intimidating aspects to picking up golf, we get it! We’re just saying that we believe the benefits will outweigh the negatives in the long run for you.

Golf is definitely one of those sports that is male-dominated. This can create a variety of perceived issues, especially in a business setting. Well, let’s knock some of those down right now.

“I’m not going to be as good as the guys are.” To be honest, a lot of your coworkers probably aren’t going to be great golfers. Just because men are playing a sport doesn’t mean they are inherently better at it. Especially golf. To make sure you’re more comfortable on the course we’d always recommend taking lessons from an instructor. This way you are more confident in your abilities when you hit the links. But in general, golf is a tough game and if your coworkers are working all day alongside you and maybe getting out to play once a week, you can totally keep up.

“I don’t have anyone to play with.” Then maybe you just aren’t looking in the right places! At a lot of courses, there are women’s leagues that you can join. There are even online groups and communities you can join to set up outings with other women or men. A personal favorite to get over the jitters, set up a tee time at a course that already has players in the group that you don’t know. The more you practice playing in a group with people you haven’t met, the less nervous you become!

And of course, you can initiate asking coworkers, clients, potential clients, and even your boss to get in a round. It may be just assumed that not a lot of women have picked up the game and therefore are not asked to play. By you initiating the asking, you not only are offering an olive branch for an outside work activity but you’re also letting them know you play the game!

Now that we’ve cleared a couple of the things that may keep you from playing…

Here are 5 things that will benefit you if you learn golf for business:

Be included in the Conversation. Gone are the days where you stand in the office watching your coworkers make plans for the course. Not only can you make it known that you play but you can initiate those conversations as well. You have the power to set the tee time, invite a coworker or boss and a potential client. Make it happen!

Learn about the people you work or want to work with. On the golf course, you may be there for business but because the environment is more relaxed you learn a lot more about a person. On top of that, because you are all playing a sport, and a difficult one at that, you can really tell a lot about a person by how they handle the ups and downs of golf. This is a great advantage!

Stand Out. If you’re looking for an edge in the business world, this is a way. We see it time and time again. Men are amazed that we even just play golf and love the game. We can keep up the conversation about the game and we know a lot about the mechanics and how to play. Of course, we’ve had years to build this up but there’s no time like the present to jump in! You’ll catch on quick, we promise! And not just men, but women we’ve met love that we can hang!

Opportunity to pitch. One of the best and greatest reasons to learn golf for business! As mentioned previously in this post, it is a more relaxed environment out on the golf course rather than in the office. You are provided a unique opportunity to literally pitch to a client for 4-5 hours. These kinds of chances are so rare otherwise!

Create your own potential leads. Okay, so you can keep it within the office and play golf with your colleagues and clients but don’t miss out on other opportunities! We talked briefly about jumping into random groups to play in order to practice. Well, this is your chance! Every time you play with a group, you have three new people to get to know and see if your business can provide a service that they may need. It is seriously one of the easiest and most comfortable ways to try to dig up new leads. Just make sure you keep a stack of your business cards in your golf bag handy like we do!

So if you’re on the fence about whether golf can be beneficial for you, then this post and our previous post about life benefits of golf should sway you to the green side! Comment below and let us know if you picked up golf to improve your business life!

This article was originally published on The Graceful Golfer.