" /> Tennis Club Business December 2016 - Book Review: Tennis Operations by Mike VanZutphen

Book Review
By Mike Van Zutphen
Reviewed by Rich Neher

Having reviewed Mike Van Zutphen's book TENNIS MANAGEMENT in August of 2015 I was curious how his new book TENNIS OPERATIONS was different. It is a little lighter with 220 pages, has the same 8.5x11 format and is, again, jam packed with information about managing a tennis club

Mike starts again with a Club Audit to enable the reader to "meet the perceived needs of our membership/guest." Then he made some changes and goes into areas directly related to operations of a club like the one he works for, SeaCliff Country Club in Huntington Beach, California. As a matter of fact, most work sheets and plans are actually taken as examples from that club.

The book continuess with Staff Information before going into the nitty gritty of outlining everything related to the club, such as

  • Court System, reservation policy, game arranging
  • Guest policy, dress code, web site
  • Leagues, junior tennis
  • Gym, spa, pool
  • Pro shop and Pro shop admin

Mike Van Zutphen’s Tennis Operations book may just be the best professional instruction guide for Tennis Professionals.

SERVICE is a very interesting section of TENNIS OPERATIONS. The reader learns pretty quickly the importance Mike is giving customer service in a tennis club operation. Example:

Business Basics 101

1. Offer a less than good product with less than good service and customers will never return.

2. Offer a less than good product backed by superior service and customers will sometimes return.

3. Offer a good product backed by superior service and customers will return.

4. Offer a superior product backes by superior service and customers will return with more customers.

From The 5 Easy Steps to Customer Satisfaction to Front Desk Check List, Sales Goal Sheets, and Special Events sheets, the SERVICE section is easily one of the most important one in TENNIS OPERATIONS. It is followed by Member Retention Guidelines, Activities (Rules and brochures) and The Club ID (from defining members and competition to staff meetings and demo racquet programs.)

Mike writes: This book will help any Tennis Director, General Manager, Club Manager, Resort Director or Tennis Management Professional conduct the unique operations of running a tennis center.

Mike Van Zutphen has had thirty years of experience in Tennis Instructional Program Management, including the design and development of direct mail and promotional campaigns. He's a Certified Master Professional in the USPTA- one of 135 classified educationally at that level in the world.

The recipient of 5 Southwest Professional of the Year Awards, 2 time recipient of the Southwest Coach of the Year Award, 2 time recipient of the National USTA Community Service Award only Professional in US to ever receive it twice. Mike was also the recipient of the Humanitarian Citation given by then Phoenix Mayor Terry Goddard now serving as Attorney General State of Arizona.

Mike is a Board/Committee Member of the USPTA National Testing Committee, designing and administering content and certification for USPTA. Five year member of USPTA National Executive Committee, representing Southwest USPTA, four years as Divisional President.

Qualifications include professional skills in all operations of club management from proshop, programming, training and supervision of staff along with skills in computer and point of sale systems.
Detailed Bio here

Mike lives in Newport Beach California and is the Director of Tennis at SeaCliff Country Club in Huntington Beach. He has 2 daughters and a wonderful wife of 35 years. He is still coaching tour players in the 200 level ATP and 100 Level WTA. He works on his website the one minute tennis lesson to help his members and clients with mechanical proficiency.

You can purchase Mike's book (and his other tennis publications) here: http://oneminutetennislesson.com

You can reach Mike at mikevz29@yahoo.com

The book ends with an entire section on inventory and listing of actual physical inventory sheets from SeaCliff. Very interesting and time saving tools for a club manager.

When you write such an extensive book and fill it with so much useful content, you can't avoid typos. Self-published books don't necessarily have the luxury of a professional proof reader. I tend to not dwell on mistakes especially after reading and reviewing the late Vic Braden's last book, which actually included a letter of apology for all the typos.

If you know Mike Van Zutphen you also know what not to expect in such a big book: structure, page numbers, organization. But you don't mind because the sheer amount of information is too valuable and will save you a lot of time.




David Berens "Break Point"

David Sammel "Locker Room Power" 

Frank Giampaolo "Tennis Parent's Bible" 2nd Ed.

Mike VanZutphen "Tennis Operations" 

Mike VanZutphen "Tennis Management"

 Bill Patton "The Art of Coaching High School Tennis"

Joe Parent / Bill Scanlon "ZEN Tennis" 

Sidney Wood "The Wimbledon Final That Never Was"

Rocky Lang "Learn Your Game"

Pat Cunningham Devoto "The Team"

JR Thornton "Beautiful Country"

Ara Grigorian "Game of Love"

Marshall Jon Fisher "A Terrible Splendor"

Stephen Edward Paper "An Army Lost"



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