Mind Your Tees and Q’s

Every December, professional golfers vie for the right to play in the PGA and Nationwide tours. Dubbed “Q-School,” the Final Stage Qualifying Tournament is a six-round, 108-hole contest that’s been called the most difficult golf tournament in the world.

Normally, I don’t pay much attention to golf, much less its career-development and deal-making applications in the world of work, but Q-School fascinates me. At base, it’s a job interview. The 30 best players will receive PGA Tour cards. The next 50 get Nationwide Tour cards. The remainder can enter the Nationwide Tour — but only if players ranked above them don’t enter.

It’s a hard cut. If you don’t do well at Q-School, you can’t play. And if you can’t play, you can’t win. And if you can’t win, well, then it’s back to Q-School, I suppose. Or to the public courses.