In golf and in businees he is known as The Great White Shark. Damon Banks goes behind Greg Norman’s fearsome façade to discover the entrepreneurial drive beneath.
Greg Norman began to make his impression on the world while managing an illustrious golf career that spanned 25 years on the U.S., European ans Australasian Tours. It was during this time that he was the number one ranked player in the world for 331 consecutive weeks, but the world could always see that there was much more to The Shark than simply playing the game of golf.
It has been his desire to attack life in everything he does, and his genius entrepreneurial abilities have continued to define him as not only one of today’s most successful entrepreneurs, but also one of the most interesting men on the planet. Putting it into his perspective, Norman said, “I’ve always lived to seize the moment, to squeeze every drop of expectation out of myself for whatever that moment gives me.”
From taking the time to enjoy watching the sun rise over the Atlantic Ocean, to diving in that ocean to swim with sharks; or from sharing a glass of wine with family and friends, to launching Greg Norman Estates, his award-winning collection of wines from Australia, California, Argentina, and New Zealand, there are simple no limits to the way Norman attacks life.
In business, he has developed a successful brand, Great White Shark Enterprises (GWSE), where he serves as Chairman and CEO. With 20 different businesses today, GWSE now has a diverse portfolio of well-established companies ranging from lifestyle-driven consumer products, such as apparel and wine, to golf course design – which has just celebrated its 100th course opening – to asset-based debt lending via the Great White Shark Opportunity Fund.
It’s all about the commitment to everything you do in life. “If you truly want to succedd at golf, business, life – any endeavour – you have to fully commit to it; and it’s not enough to only want it,” said Norman. “The competition is too heavy, and if you are lucky enough to reach the top of whatever you do, then you actually have to work harder, because everyone underneath is gunning for you.”
He shocked his GWSE staff when he presented them with a 200-year Business Plan, but followed that up by saying that honestly felt like the company had only reached 20 percent of its potential. While many executives would sit back and enjoy the success of a business, Norman knows that there is still more that can be done to firmly secure the GWSE brand for many generations to come. “There are so many opportunities, and the future, and the future is there because of the way I have established the company today,” add Norman.
He is also known to love the thrill of the adventure. Truly living a life that is beyond imagination for many, Norman has cage dived with great white sharks, jumped out of planes, flown an F-16 fighter jet, climbed active volcanoes, and danced with Maori Tūwharetoa tribesmen in New Zealand. He is an advocate for staying in shape for the many benefits he feels it brings to your body, both mentally and physically. Norman said, “stay in good physical condition, as it will make a significant difference in your mental outlook – I’m the fittest I’ve ever been, so when I look 60, I feel 45.”
Savouring The Journey
Spend just a few minutes with Norman, and it’s obvious that each of his businesses mean a great deal to him. With the opening of the 100th Greg Norman Golf Course Design, Norman reflected on these courses that spread over six continents and 34 countries, which all have a very special place in his heart. The Medalist Golf Club in Hobe Sound, Florida was the first Greg Norman Golf Course Design, The Allegria in Cairo, Egypt was the first design in the Middle East, TPC Sugarloaf in Duluth, Georgia was the first design that hosted a PGA tournament, The Bluffs Ho Tram Strip in Vietnam was named on the ‘Best New Courses’ list by GOLF Magazine in 2014 and helped put Vietnam on the map as a golf destination, and finally, The Eastern Golf Club in Melbourne, Australia has the distinction of being lucky number 100.
“Because each design bears my name, I personally make it my mission to get involved with every step of the design process, from walking the virgin site, to planning and construction, to opening day,” said Norman. “I take seriously the legacy we create in designing and developing each golf course – this milestone gives me particular satisfaction, knowing we have made a global impact in creating courses that withstand the test of time.”
Approach To Life
Regardless of your place in this world, or your profession, Norman has some solid advice that has helped him put life into perspective numerous times over the years. “Victory is sweet, but how you handle yourself in defeat is often more telling. So be gracious, be happy for others, and don’t let a problem or setback attack and defeat you,” said Norman. When taking some advice on life and business from someone with as many successes (and adventurous stories) as Greg Norman, the takeaway is to attack life from every angle and to commit to every endeavor you take on.
“There is no quitting,” said Norman.
This article, courtesy of Damon Banks, appears in the Summer 2016 issue of Australia’s Signature Travel & Style Magazine. Signature Travel & Style Magazine reaches a sophisticated and financially independent audience of 100,000 with a passion for travel and life.
The article "Greg Norman On Attacking Life And Savouring The Journey" was originally published on http://www.shark.com/sharkwatch/news/signature-luxury-travel-style-summer-2016/