My Story - Ian McDowell

Ian McDowell -My Story

After graduating from the University of Glamorgan with a degree in Sports Psychology I got a summer job working in a Pro-Shop at a club in Herefordshire. It was a small team which meant that I had to be very much part of the day to day running of the business, and I quickly came to find that I enjoyed it.

After working at two proprietary owned members clubs in Herefordshire & Worcestershire (in Golf Operations and Retail) I was given the opportunity to move to London, working at Hampton Court Palace Golf Club under Crown Golf. This was the first time I had worked within a group environment and it opened my eyes to a completely different and exciting side of the golf industry.

In 2005 I moved to The Wisley, a private members club in Surrey where I worked as Sales and Marketing Executive for 5 years, completing a Professional Diploma and becoming a member of the Charted Institute of Marketing.

I had always aimed to become a General Manager but was finding it increasingly difficult and frustrating to work out how I was going to get there, to the point where I was considering options outside of the golf industry. Thankfully, at this time I was introduced to BGL who were launching their Management in Training programme and I was lucky enough to be the first person accepted onto it. I quickly found myself moving from one of the most exclusive clubs in the UK to Hoebridge, one of the busiest pay and play centres, a real baptism of fire but an amazing experience!

I spent 10 months working under Senior General Manager, Mike O’Connell, learning every aspect of the business and gaining valuable experience while also working with him to develop the programme for future candidates.  

In December 2011 I successfully applied for the General Manager position at Redbourn Golf Club and have spent the past 4 ½ years here. The MIT programme allowed me to walk into the role knowing what was required so I could hit the ground running, and I had an excellent network of managers around the group to support me while I continued to grow and develop.

BGL is a great company to work for, it is an exciting, forward thinking business full of great people and plenty of opportunities and support to grow and progress.


Event Date

Monday, December 12, 2016