National Club Association Foundation
Club leaders know that traditions and heritage are an important part of the private club environment. Yet we are often called upon to adapt those traditions to the rapidly changing world around us. The NCA Foundation recognizes that a variety of influences can affect the future of private clubs. That is why we are continually working to develop resources that will help clubs be better prepared for the future.
At the core of the Foundation's work is a diverse offering of research projects, publications and educational opportunities to help club. Current intitiatives include:
The Board Leadership Institute
Given the growing importance of club governance, NCA created the Board Leadership Institute as a way to build on the governance resources offered to our club members. Our goal is to provide resources to develop highly effective club boards that are well prepared for their future.
Institute initiatives will focus on knowledge building activities to expand both awareness of, and ways to use, effective guidance on club governance. The Institute initiatives will also seek to improve understanding of what constitutes best practices in club governance and how to apply those concepts with the development of with expanded resources and educational content. The ways we are doing this include the new governance departments in Club Director, a special governance track at the National Club Conference and governance-focused seminars at NCA regional conferences, new webinars geared for club leaders, and additional resources like our upcoming "Board Toolkit," and research and publications geared to help clubs and their leaders.
Navigating the Future: The Outlook for Private Clubs
What will the club industry look like in the decade ahead? With the support of the NCA Foundation, the National Club Association has recently launched a new futuristic trends research project—Navigating the Future: The Outlook for Private Clubs.It utilized a number of research methodologies such as interactive forecasting, surveys and focus groups to evaluate ways in which the makeup of the club industry is shifting, ways to achieve success in the future, the impact of increasing competition for club services, and how the club of the future and its membership might differ from today. NCA, working with the McMahon Group, has published an exciting new publication, which provides a long-term perspective of what is changing in the club environment and how to respond. Future initiatives of this project will include an online database with examples of clubs that have employed successful strategies in response to trends issues.
The focus of the study included both internal and external forces that will shape the future for clubs over the next decade and beyond, including potential changes in the industry makeup, changes in club membership, and ways in which the club of the future will differ from today. This multi-phase phase research project will continue to collect expertise and thoughts of industry experts on issues likely to shape the industry for years to come—providing a unique snapshot of the future of private clubs.
Other projects funded in the past through NCA Foundation support include:
- The 2009 NCA Private Club Operations Report provided invaluable benchmarking data and operating ratios to help clubs assess internal operations and compare them to prevailing industry trends.
- The Legal Reference Guide for Private Clubs, a “must have” resource on legal issues confronting clubs, helps clubs be proactive in managing exposures. Released in early 2010, the book contains sample checklists and policies, as well as steps to take should a legal challenge arise.
- Research on the Future of Private Golf Clubs, through which an NCA Foundation grant was awarded to disseminate the National Golf Foundation’s research Study, The Future of Private Golf Clubs in America – A Strategic Perspective to all golf clubs in the United States.
- Research for Development of Publications: Foundation support has helped to produce publications such as Club Governance Guidelines: A Path to Organizational Excellence and Private Club Facility Access Issues.
Ongoing NCA Foundation Projects:
- Trends Research: The NCA Foundation supports annual trends research that update clubs on current challenges and opportunities, as well as development of the annual Future Trends & Issues: A Private Club Perspective, with in-depth analysis of trends in demographics, economics, workforce and lifestyle issues affecting clubs. The report is sent to all NCA members each year.
- The National Club Conference addresses key legislative, regulatory and operational issues for clubs. The Foundation has sponsored the conference since its inception.
- Educational Content for NCA Website: NCA Foundation funding supports the addition of new educational content on the NCA website, enabling NCA to expand the array of valuable information in the NCA knowledge center and enhance the ability to share documents such as model policies.
- Support for development of a series of webinars, to allow club managers to access timely, relevant information on topics affecting clubs, from the convenience of their office. Thanks to the Foundation’s support, NCA hosted its first webinar in September, 2010.
- The Impact of Technology for Private Clubs, a joint Foundation study with the Hospitality Financial & Technology Professionals that will assess technology trends affecting clubs and develop long-term solutions.