Ryan is an award-winning, industry-recognized Club expert and coach who specializes in providing strategies to help Clubs strengthen their operations, improve their Member experience, build winning teams and increase their overall Club health and success.
With over 30 years of experience in the hospitality industry, serving not only large corporations including Walt Disney World, ClubCorp and Arnold Palmer, but also 25 years working in Club Management, Ryan has both the hands-on skills and business acumen needed to create an unforgettable Member and guest experience.
Ryan’s understanding of the challenges faced by Clubs and their leaders inspired him to launch his hospitality and business consulting company in 2005. Due to the rising interest from Clubs, given Ryan’s expertise, he spun off a dedicated Club-centric division in 2015 called Strategic Club Solutions. Through SCS, Ryan helps boards, owners, and management teams unlock opportunities within their Clubs, taking them to previously unthinkable new heights.
Ryan has served over 400 Clubs, HOA’s, POA’s and Communities and received numerous awards, including Boardroom Magazine 2019, 2020 and 2021 Excellence in Achievement for Strategic Planning, Marketing Company, Branding/Communications, and Consulting Company. SCS was awarded Golf Inc. 2019 & 2021 Advisor of the Year, and CIO Applications Top Club Management Solutions Provider. He is a national speaker and recognized as an approved CMAA speaker. He has presented over 75 presentations nationally on topics including “Next Level of Strategic Planning,” “Infusing Performance Management and Culture to Build a Winning Team,” “The Secret Sauce to Managing Costs and Delivering an Experience in F&B”, “Managing Up”, “You’ve Been Served, Exceptional Service in Private Clubs.”
Work with Ryan to connect the patterns and find core problems at your Club, HOA or Community rather than just treating the obvious symptoms. You’ll see tangible results and a positive impact that will transform the success of your Club and/or Community for years to come.
“I started Strategic Club Solutions in response to my colleagues in the Club industry. I’ve been fortunate and strategic in surrounding myself with successful alliances in years past. This business allows my team and I to now help others.”
“As a Strategic Club Solutions team member, I get to challenge, encourage and really stretch the ideas and tactically marketing strategies for our clients. It’s like our clients get an entire marketing agency when working with us.”
Laura is a marketing and branding expert who uses research-backed, neuromarketing best practices and principles to help Clubs define their brand and integrate it within every Member touchpoint and experience. She aids with brainstorming, messaging, branding, planning and developing deliverables to tell a Club’s story and create more loyal Members.
Laura founded and has directed a full-service marketing firm for 21 years and has experience working with a variety of clients in the restaurant and hospitality industries. She started a youth volleyball club in 2010 and works with 500 youths annually with camps and club opportunities. She serves on the MTEF Board of Education Foundation and is an active member of TEMPO Milwaukee. Laura joined the Team at SCS when we launched the SCS name in 2015.
For years, Laura has attended conferences like NMSBA (Neuromarketing, Science and Business), studied the theories of neuromarketing experts like Roger Dooley and taken classes from branding and storytelling champion, Donald Miller. She leverages her skills and experiences to create smart, proven strategies for Clubs that help them define who they are, what makes them unique, and what makes people want to be Members. Once she helps a Club understand its true identity, she uses this as a framework to develop influential messaging, creative deliverables and powerful Membership strategies.
Laura is a fun and engaging national speaker and is recognized as an approved CMAA speaker. She has presented nationally on topics including “The Power of a Brand,” “The Power of Pictures: Tips and Triggers for Motivating Your Audience Through Images,” “How to Use Brain Science to Better Understand Your Audience,” and “Using Neuromarketing Tips to Run a Better Club.”
When you work with Laura, she’ll challenge and encourage you to approach your Club’s brand and story with a fresh perspective while creating results that increase current Members’ pride and prospective Members’ desire to be a part of something so incredible.
Christina is a recognized leader in club operations and industry standards and brings over 20 years of hospitality experience to Strategic Club Solutions. Her experience includes large corporations, 4-diamond resorts and private clubs. Leading by example, Christina excels at taking teams beyond their realized potential. She serves as a sounding board, identifying necessary leadership styles through conversation and relationship building, ultimately helping senior leaders get out of their own way.
Her successes in the private club operations allow Christina to understand the moving parts and identify what it takes to create a thriving club with memorable member experiences. As a Certified Club Manager (CCM), she’s led clubs through some of their most challenging times, turning what could be disastrous situations into education, growth and revenue-building opportunities. Christina has led diverse teams, including health and fitness, spa, aquatics, marketing, programming, housekeeping and food and beverage. At the helm of operations, through major renovations, 400+ person social events, 14 different simultaneous food and beverage outlets and maintaining a historic Landmark building, Christina has successfully coached teams to reach beyond conventional expectations and deliver a meaningful impact.
Christina is passionate about giving back and mentoring the next generation of hospitality professionals. She has served on the Board of Directors for the Greater Chicago Club Managers Association of America Chapter and consecutively chaired three sub-committees, including education, entertainment and wine. As chair, Christina successfully led the Midwest Regional Educational Forum, championed chapter social events and fundraised wine donations for CMAA national conference to help fund continuing wine education.
Christina is a dynamic leader. Through a passion for detail and genuine relationships, she will ensure your experience with the SCS team helps you meet your goals and provide the best quality of service to members and clients.
“With years of experience in private Club management and decades in the hospitality industry, I’m able to bring solid financial practices.”
John brings 30 years of experience serving as a Business Strategist and Advisor to Clubs to achieve lasting results. Through his experience, John delivers strategic and financial insights that focus on the foundational relationship of finance and operations, bridging a traditional gap between the two disciplines. These insights build a stronger foundation for a Club to perform to achieve financial health and operational strength.
John’s significant experience as a business leader aids his clients to achieve ongoing improvements. With a resume building success in organizations like Kemper Sports, First Tee, Potbelly, Jimmy Johns, and Deloitte & Touche, his breadth of business and financial acumen combined with Club and hospitality management make him the perfect addition to the SCS team. John aligns financial and business goals with a Club’s capabilities to ensure a best in class Member experience and financial health while also stretching the Club to achieve at its full potential.
John also provides significant experience in raising and securing long-term capital, mergers and acquisitions, improving cash flow and developing programs to reduce costs without negatively impacting the member or customer experience.
Lastly, John has a working knowledge in the back-of-the-house aspects of a Club by working with executive management and accounting staff. This helps Club staff improve their financial acumen relative to their roles within the Club along with improving financial and management reporting to align with a Club’s strategic and tactical goals.
Natalie brings 10+ years of photography and graphic design experience to the SCS team, specializing in creating branded visual content across clubs’ digital and print platforms. She helps clients with all aspects of their communications, including newsletters, flyers, websites, eblasts, social media and more. In addition, Natalie is a professional photographer who gets the best images for clubs to attract attention and tell their story the right way.
I enjoy helping clients improve their visual content in order to make a lasting impression that tells their story.
Michelle brings 15 years of hospitality experience to Strategic Club Solutions, including tenure with The Walt Disney Company, talent recruitment and leadership development at Charlotte Country Club, a U.S. Platinum Club, and volunteerism focused on student engagement and programming. With celebrated successes in hiring and team development in private clubs, Michelle strives to blend creativity and enthusiasm to form team-centric people operations.
Cyndi brings 20+ years of hospitality and private club experience to the Strategic Club Solutions team. Her focus has been in membership development, operations and customer experience training and strategies with yacht and country clubs throughout the Midwest. With experience in strategic planning, she works to align business objectives with team engagement, and believes building a healthy club culture is foundational to success. As a sailor herself, Cyndi brings a passion for the yacht club industry, and knows what it takes to provide an exceptional member experience on the waterfront. Operationally, she has developed and led hospitality teams dedicated to building an environment members can be proud of. Cyndi identifies with being somewhat of a “fixer” and really enjoys digging into challenges with clients and helping them find an innovative path to that next level of greatness.
“I have the unique advantage of bringing inside perspective to our clients. Having served years in the back of the house, I know what it takes for establishments to do it right.”
Maikel is a 20+ year veteran in the hospitality and private club industry. He has worked in every aspect of food and beverage including private country clubs, find dining, special events, concessions and bar management. Other areas of expertise include profit and loss analysis, strategic planning food and labor cost controls, menu development, payroll, human resources, information technologies, audio visual, and employee development. He started his career as a line cook. Maikel resides in Thiensville, Wisconsin with his wife Michelle raising two boys.
Allie brings 5+ years of marketing and communications experience to the team, specializing in digital strategy and social media marketing. She integrates knowledge from her degrees in Journalism, Strategic Communication and Psychology to effectively tell stories that inspire change among her target audience.
She also loves writing and crafting persuasive copy that sells. She has authored content for both local and national publications and enjoys using the power of words to make a difference.
Allie strives to use her digital and writing skills to help clients manage their digital spaces with strategy and messaging that moves the needle.
Your digital platforms are often your first impression-makers. I enjoy helping clients improve their digital spaces in order to make a positive impression that sticks.
Employees across industries are all motivated by the same factors. What separates a good and a great organization is whether they listen to their most valuable asset, their people, to hear what is and isn’t working. What’s even more important is what they do about it.
Nevena has over 12 years working experience in various industries ranging from niche retail markets and administrative settings to private city clubs.
After earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Industrial & Organizational Psychology from DePaul University, her interests in employee turnover, organizational change, and other topics led her to pursue this area at the graduate level which she describes as the “people side of an MBA”.
Nevena most recently earned her Masters degree in Industrial/Organizational Psychology as well as the prestigious SHRM-CP certification.
She strives to use her knowledge of Human Resources and psychological factors affecting employees at work to partner with businesses in need of a strategic business partner.
Lyn is a consumer behavior specialist, business strategist and award winning interior designer with over 30 years of experience creating intentional and engaging environments that bring brands to life. She uses her knowledge of design, business, consumer behavior and environmental psychology to craft interactive and emotionally engaging experiences that delight customers, elevate brands and increase bottom lines. Lyn’s ability to create an exceptional customer experience translates perfectly to the club market — she shows club managers how to adapt their physical environments to maximize member interest and engagement.
“Never underestimate the power of a well-designed environment. With a few changes, you can transform the way your members feel in your Club, how they use the space, and what they remember about their visit.”
Mark brings over 20 years of experience in the private and public Club markets. As a PGA professional, Mark developed a reputation for elevating service and satisfaction at the facilities at which he has been employed. He brings the perspective of someone who has spent years on the “front lines” delivering results in the Club industry.
After years as the Head Golf Professional at a private Club, Mark pursued his dream of owning his own golf facility. Mark successfully transformed a struggling, semi-private facility by significantly boosting revenues and streamlining operations. Mark served as both the General Manager and Head Golf Professional, working and investing in every aspect of the Club. Following the successful sale of his golf course in 2019, Mark joined the team at SCS.
Mark is a Certified PGA Professional in the areas of General Management, Golf Operations, Instruction, Merchandising, Executive Management and Ownership/Leasing, positioning him in the top 1% of the 29,000 PGA Professionals nationally. Additionally, Mark is a two-time recipient of the Merchandiser of the Year award from the Wisconsin PGA and was honored as a finalist for the National Merchandiser of the Year award from the PGA of America.
As a former Regional Superintendent for Century Golf Partners and Arnold Palmer Golf Management, Phil has managed turf across the country through a variety of climates and conditions. Phil’s knowledge of agronomy and hands-on experience brings the first-hand perspective when working with our clients. Whether it’s managing turf, equipment, re-designs, water management, and financial planning, Phil has worked with the best in the industry. He is continually committed to leading agronomic practices and top-quality turf conditions for Private and Public Golf Courses throughout the US.
Ryan came in to a very difficult situation at our club and really added the strong leadership and management that was badly needed at our club. He really helped turn our club around and making it fun again. His help with our strategic plan and our Membership growth were phenomenal and just what we needed. I know he has earned the respect of the membership and the staff while dealing with some tough situations.