If you watched the recent Masters Tournament, or any professional golf for that matter, there’s one thing you should realize: Behind the success of every golfer lies an exceptional caddie.
Yes, a golfer’s relationship with his caddie can make or break his chances of winning. But looking for the perfect caddie is only half of the equation. The other half is how you build the relationship with them. Here are a few tips and etiquette rules in engaging with your caddie, whether you’re in it for the long haul, or would just love to have a great game on your golfvacation:
You’re not his master
Your relationship with your caddie goes beyond the whole “master-servant” deal. But while part of a caddie’s job description is carrying the golf bag and cleaning the clubs upon request, it does not entitle the golfer to treat the caddie like his or her personal bellhop or assistant. Remember that your caddie is working WITH you - not for you.
Respect begets respect, and giving your caddie the same amount of respect you’d expect from anyone can go a long way. But with that sad;
Don’t get too chummy with your caddie either
It’s for the benefit of your game and anyone else’s who’s within earshot. Keep it to golf talk with how you can improve your swing or your game in general, don’t over-engage with your caddie. The last thing he’d want to hear from you is your problems at work or what's happening at home.
Remember that your caddie will do anything to make sure that you play the best possible game, from keeping you out of trouble to giving you a tip or two about your swing. Carrying that bag, too can be difficult, especially if you’re walking on uneven terrain. A generous tip should be in order. The rule of thumb in giving tips is 50% for a good job done, or 100% on top of the regular fee for an exceptional one.
Don’t forget to say thank you
It only takes a simple gesture of appreciation to let your caddie know how much he has helped you improve your game big time. Caddies have been pivotal to the success of many golfers. Just ask Jordan Spieth, who won the recently concluded Masters. His relationship with his caddie, Michael Greller, has been crucial to his win in the Masters.
It all comes down to respect. If you treat your caddie with respect and gratitude for helping you in your game, you get something back, tenfold. It’s not just the rule of the game. It’s the rule of karma.
Don't forget these small things on your next golf trip!