Royal Mid-Surrey Golf Club, which adjoins Kew Gardens in Richmond and celebrates its 125th anniversary this year, will host a corporate golf day with a difference later this month – one aimed exclusively at businesswomen*.
Around 100 high-flying female executives are due to network during the SSE Women’s Invitational event on Wednesday 17 May on the Club’s Pam Barton course (named after a member who once held both British and US amateur ladies titles), whether they are looking to improve their current golfing handicap figure or swinging clubs for the first time.
Some women taking part can choose not to compete, but have personal coaching from the newly-appointed PGA professional, Sophie Daws; attend a beginner’s clinic; or play a casual 9-holes before cocktails and canapes. All of the participants will take part in an ‘Achieving Excellence’ session featuring speakers such as former Lions and England rugby coach Sir Clive Woodward and Olympic hockey star Sam Quek. Sky Sports’ presenter Nick Dougherty and his wife Di will also be attending.
Devised and organised by IMG on behalf of energy provider SSE – which also sponsors the Women’s FA Cup – the new-look corporate golf event looks to provide ambitious business women with a format that was once the sole preserve of their male counterparts. It’s supported by Sport Aid, Aston Martin, retailing group Harvey Nichols, bespoke tailors Apsley, golf brand Lynx and the Mexico Tourism Board.
Syngenta Golf Ambassador, Carin Koch, will be among the speakers from the worlds of business and sport during the morning conference.
The former LPGA Tour and Ladies European Tour winner will also participate in the afternoon’s golf activities, which will feature love.golf, the award-winning coaching programme for women, supported by Syngenta.
Carin Koch said: “The SSE Women’s Invitational is an excellent example of bringing business and sport together to drive diversity and inclusion, both in the workplace and on the golf course.
Royal Mid-Surrey boasts the largest women’s membership in the country, with more than 300 active female golfers. It has offered memberships to women from the outset and recently saw one of them, 20-year-old England international Inci Mehmet, turn professional on the Ladies European Tour.
Ladies Captain, Liz Webster, commented: “It’s great to have the Club host an important event of this nature and we welcome those women who want to play golf and who see the game as a means to engage with others socially or with a positive business agenda.”
*More than a third of CEOs of top-level global companies said some of their biggest business deals were made on the golf course and a third of women who played the game said that golf resulted in additional business for them (Source: MGT Open 2012).