Friday Feature: Laura Frick, PGA, Is Directing Her Way Through the PGA of America
By Keith Stewart, PGA
PGA Jr. League Championship Director, Laura Frick during the Welcome Reception and Skills Competition for the 2019 PGA Jr. League Championship presented by National Car Rental held at the Grayhawk Golf Club on October 11, 2019 in Scottsdale, Arizona. (Photo by Darren Carroll/PGA of America)
What would you write if you were given the task of developing your own job description? How would your passion for what you do daily resonate on paper? Laura Frick is a PGA Member who directs competitions for the PGA of America. Her ability to coordinate others started with a unique ability to direct herself. Her most valuable talent is her ability to take the first step. To lead while others sit still.
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Our golf ecosystem is vaster than we can imagine. Every day people connect and reconnect throughout our industry. In 2021, the business of golf is growing and the number of opportunities outside of a traditional club position (golf professional, general manager) are limitless. Take Laura Frick for an example. Taught to play golf by her grandparents she is your classic junior golfer. Her family played, and her uncle was a PGA Member. Laura’s introduction to the game started the same way it did for so many of us. She competed on her high school team and was in love with golf.
As a student-athlete she showed promise in the classroom earning recognition and becoming a member of the National Honor Society. Those who know Laura believe she is passionate and thoughtful. In her senior year of high school, she took advantage of both those traits and decided to enroll in the PGM Program at Ferris State. In those days, golf was her smartphone. It captivated her attention in so many ways. As a result, she just couldn’t imagine a career in any other line of work than being part of our industry.
When you meet Laura Frick, you realize instantly that she is a driven person. She takes great pride in following through. A skill we don’t see enough in many of those who surround our daily lives. Passion can get you started, but self-belief and a strong mind are needed to complete tasks. Frick is consistently asked to give her perspective on the future while at work. She gets invited to participate in creative sessions amongst her peers. Experience is wonderful, but a fresh outlook and a macro perspective from a young leader is also vital to the success of the PGA of America.
While surrounded by sixty male classmates and a club professional mindset at Ferris State, Laura remembered her mom. Her greatest role model instilled in her a hardworking and confident personality. It’s easy for all of us to run with the pack, but taking a non-traditional path requires courage and thoughtfulness. Frick considered what she liked most about the industry and remained focused on a career as a tournament director and event coordinator.
Fast forward to present day as the tournament vertical of the golf industry and event business are exploding. How did Laura know this would be the case? She didn’t. Laura knew she wanted to direct competitions and events. She wanted to play a significant role in how others enjoy the game. At a young age one of her first career interests was that of being a special education teacher. Today she works on a team that is developing how the PGA will manage their competitive programs of the future.
Having a director mindset keeps Laura focused on her career path. She’s very good at balancing what she has learned with a passion for where she wants to go. A great example of this came when she reached out to the tournament director of a brand-new LPGA tournament. The story seems so logical and simple when Frick tells it, she reached out to this golf executive on LinkedIn. A super brave move, yet when you possess self-belief, you just go out and take the first step. A “director” does it all. They don’t sit and direct, the move and lead.
Learn from Laura’s example and take a first step this week. Balance your passion with careful thinking because in 2021 the golf ecosystem is exponentially growing with opportunities. The PGA of America and other leading companies in our industry are looking for young PGA Members who want to be leaders. Laura Frick grew up knowing she wanted a career in the golf business. Over time her wide perspective allowed her to build a career she truly enjoys.
Her daily routine resembles that of her friends outside of our industry. Her story is unique, but it’s not a stand-alone example. Listen to her interview and you will quickly realize we can all build a personal career path in golf. My favorite part of the conversation came when she talked about the future. She accepts the unknown because five years ago the present job she has didn’t exist. Laura is the League Golf Competitions Manager. She sits on the leading edge of our industry.
Working on a team that coordinates our PGA Junior League Championship and PGA Family Cup is navigating every day through uncharted waters. Frick loves the blank canvas she works on with others. Imagine a role where you consistently use feedback to set new goals. Laura and the team she works with are consistently rewarded. That positive fuel combined with a motivated mindset is impressive. Laura’s outlook is awesome, “Predicting the future isn’t really my job, golf is showing us the future every day.”
Laura has followed a blueprint set by PGA Members and business executives she has encountered throughout her career. Her PGA Journey is not a straight line. Well golf is not a linear game, and neither are the roles that support it. We can however direct our next shot. Preparation leads to self-awareness and thoughtfulness connects us with others. Laura is an amazing example of how to use a PGM experience and create a really cool life in golf.
After the interview, I asked Laura what she is most proud of at this point in her journey. She said her reputation. The respect she receives from her colleagues really inspires her. It motivates her to keep growing and believing in herself. Every director has a vision. There will be times when that perspective will be tested or questioned. Laura Frick’s work ethic and infectious personality succinctly displays for others what she’s all about. Follow Ms. Frick and begin by setting an example for yourself. Before you know it, your future may come into focus just like hers.
Keith Stewart is a 5-time award-winning PGA Professional with 25 years of experience in the golf industry. His network of players, coaches and insiders provide him with a unique perspective on the game. He's a writer on PGA.com and host of the ProShow on ESPN 920 AM Friday afternoons at 3:00pm EDT. Check out his PGA Coaching articles archived here or his conversations on air with this link to his website The ProShow.