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The Price of Good

Posted by mynormas on December 27, 2017


So… it has been five or was it six. years since I started this consultancy thing. And yet I still get the “There is such a job as a GRASS consultant?” look and question. Even on a TV morning show once. Yes there is and he is doing pretty well too.

I’m lucky I’ve got a good and comfortable car. This car has been driven over 320,000 kilometers now (for you Americans, Liberians and Myanmarese; that is 200,000 miles) to clients almost all over the peninsular of Malaysia.

skoda odometer cameron

The odometer of my Skoda

That’s right, I’ve been to the far edges of the country vising golf courses. Come to think of it, I’ve actually straddled the border with two other countries on Malaysian golf courses built at borders.

I’ve been to golf courses that really need my help and I’ve been to golf courses that think they don’t need my help. I use the word ‘think’ because some one at the club management level invited me over because he thinks I am needed but the person-in-charge doesn’t agree  so ends up I’ll be there with an uninterested superintendent/supervisor/manager or he won’t even be there at all. I have been standing in a field with the management but the superintendent is  ‘too busy’ or on ’emergency leave’ or untraceable “He WAS here this morning”. Then the face of the management who invited me will change colour.

Of course those were the days when I first started and I offered help for free or ‘pro-bono’ as the intellectuals call it. Nowadays I don’t do free and in fact I charge a hefty fee so I get to meet the big bosses wherever I go. I find that people pay more attention when they have to pay more money. One busy boss insisted I do a presentation to him the day after my visit. So I’ll do a PowerPoint presentation that night in a hotel to present to him the following day. It started out as a six-month contract but I ended up consulting for the club for almost 30 months.

Since 2016, I have been doing football fields and landscaping too. And I’ve gone further with this. There is a lot more competition in the pricing war but in the quality battle; I usually win.  Pity most decisions are made based on pricing but when they want quality, I get it delivered. So when do I get jobs? When the shit has hit the fan. Examples are (let me know if any of them rings your bell):

  • When the tournament is a few weeks away and and the field is wet or the greens are slow.
  • When the VVVIP is visiting next month and the grass is not green enough (they’re actually red; no kidding).
  • When they have spent thousands or even millions and they didn’t get what they were expecting.
  • When they need to open for play and the field/course is not ready to open.
  • When no other consultant has the right idea (coz they need more money!) to do it. I actually turned down a project three times but they keep coming back to me.

Achievement 1

In 2017 I’ve been to a place in the middle of nowhere, to see if the hard-core golfers there could build a golf course. I’ve been to a high-security clearance place where my bags were x-rayed like what you see in the airports and all five fingers were scanned every time I entered and left the compound, where I had to consent to background checks for me and my wife. I have met, spoken, discussed with royalty about grasses. Not bad for a ‘grass guy’.

I’ve been to a lot of places and achieved a lot in 2017. And my services have helped quite a lot of people all this while. I think in 2018, I deserve to treat myself to a raise.

If you happen to fall into one of the categories above, do give me a call at O3-5I3I-OO66 (and please let it ring for a long time)  or write to me at mynormasATconsultant.com.

Achievements 2

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