1) Your name, your club and your position.
Richard Moore Taree Aquatic Club Secretary Manager
2) What is your biggest or has been your biggest challenge with the club and your role?
I joined the club in 2001 when it was floundering. There was industrial trouble, poor food, poor customer service and communication between the Board of Directors, management and staff was “difficult”. These issues were obviously impacting on the club’s trade and inhibiting its chances for success. The club is situated on the banks of the beautiful Manning River and its location suggested that the club should be successful however it had experienced a somewhat unstable existence during the previous 20 years.
I was unsure whether the current circumstances could be turned around and for various reasons I had offered my resignation twice in my first 18 months. I persevered and systematically addressed all the major issues starting with the industrial unrest and communication between the Board, management and staff. We fixed the food and customer service and all involved could see the positive impact the changes were having.
From that point the club went “gangbusters” and the rest, as they say, is history.
3) What has been some of your achievements or highlights since being at the club?
Changing attitudes and turning the club around as detailed above would have to be the most significant achievement and highlight given the long term impact it has had on the club. The other achievements and highlights listed below can be attributed to this.
The club has achieved so many significant things over the last 16 years, these are a few highlights:
• Membership increased from 2,100 to 7,200 (243%)
• Visitor and guest attendances increased from 23,800 to 50,000 (110%)
• Revenue from bar, gaming and Keno increased from $921,000 to $1,907,000 (107%)
• No industrial matters since 2001
• 2 major capital renovations completed in 2007 and 2010 at a cost of approximately $1,500,000 paid for from cash reserves generated since 2001.
• Gaming room renovations including alfresco gaming and additional entitlements completed July 2017.
In addition to the above I joined the CMAA mentoring program in 2017 as a mentor. This has been extremely rewarding and I consider this to be a personal significant achievement. Looking forward to working in the program in 2018.
4) Is there a piece of advice or something compelling you have learnt that you can pass on to our readers and up and coming managers.
Where do I start, I’ll try and be brief.
When becoming the manager of a club, unless the place is falling down around you, forget capital improvements as your first priority. Spend the time and effort to understand your club before deciding what if anything needs to be changed. When you understand what makes your club “tick” the decisions you make will be the right ones. Don’t think you need to change things just because you can.
Another thing I have found invaluable is to never forget why the club is there, why it was built. Keeping this in the back of your mind will help you focus on what’s important to the club and its members. Don’t get caught up in developing the empire and forgetting the essence of the club.
This is a “biggy”. Always respect the Board of Directors no matter how much you may disagree with them on occasions. Learn to work with them as a united team and consider yourself to be part of the governing body. Keep on top of the issues at your club, make sure you have the answers and let them know you’re in charge. This will give them the confidence to let you do your job.
5) Outside of the club and your role there. Do you have any hobbies or passions.. tell us a bit about you?
I enjoy fishing, gardening and pottering around in the shed. We have a motorhome so we love getting out and seeing our great country a little bit at a time. Haven’t found that ultimate fishing spot yet but we’re having a lot of fun trying.
Outside of my role I’m still very passionate about the principles of management, managers’ responsibilities and the rights and welfare of employees. As such I run a free industrial advocacy service offering advice to businesses and employees on matters relating to employment conditions, organizational structure and financial management.