Roaring into 20…Part 1

January 10, 2020

Happy New Year from all of us at RCS! A new year brings much opportunity to reflect and remember how far we’ve come, celebrating wins, learning from mistakes and planning our next big thing! 2020 brings extra celebration and reflection as this year marks the 20th anniversary of RCS! Last week, I received notification that we were recognized for two Excellence in Achievement Awards from BoardRoom Magazine for Consulting Company and Staff Training, bringing our total over the last two decades to ten! In addition, I was honored to be recognized as Gary Player of the Year last year. None of it would have happened without the entire RCS team, and I see how fortunate I have been and am grateful beyond belief for the recognition for our collective hard work and dedication. Twenty years ago, it was all just a dream…..

Group Photo

When I think back through the years; how RCS started, the amazing places we’ve traveled, the intelligent, funny and hard-working people we’ve met, and the impressive list of customers with whom we’ve been privileged to work, I am honored and humbled.

RCS’ mission and vision has always been to be forward thinkers and evolve with the hospitality industry. At the time that RCS was founded, I felt that we as an industry needed to move faster, be more progressive, embrace technology and recognize a changing society. Most importantly, I wanted to help busy managers do their jobs more efficiently and provide another set of experienced hands for renovation projects, special events or staff/management training. That mission hasn’t changed but my world and that of RCS has grown beyond my imagination. I truly am living the dream. #grateful

After 20 years, I find myself surrounded by the RCS team; who share my passion and values.  I genuinely enjoy working with them every day. They inspire me. They lift me up. They work hard and bring new ideas every day. Luckily, major changes have allowed us to continue evolving and serving our customers…..

Communication and Technology

Communication modes has drastically changed in the past twenty years—when I founded RCS in 2000, I did so by mailing out letters to my contacts announcing that I was starting a business. Back then it was impossible to talk on the phone and be on the internet at the same time, and work was done in an office.

Today, the RCS team is fully-remote, and we find ourselves talking on the phone and e-mailing at the same time or screen sharing on Zoom—all while waiting on a flight at the airport. I now have strategic board meetings via video conference and can share a document on the spot or pull up a chart on my computer to reinforce a point. I can remote into someone’s Point of Sale system to set it up – all the way in New Zealand, which I did just two years ago.

Because of these changes, our training has changed too. We offer webinars, blogs, on site and virtual training now. When I started, I used to bring flipcharts with me to do training because many clubs did not have a projector. Today, we can access our presentations from any web-connected device and projectors are a staple. And our customer in Hong Kong can take our training courses thanks to virtual training access. 

We can train golf course employees all over the country through our new partnership with the NGCOA and as fast as I can dream up a training course, we can create it and deploy it, virtually. 

Health and Wellness

I remember sitting in a conference in the mid 90’s and the speaker was saying that every club should build a fitness facility. Only a handful followed this advice, but today, health and wellness is the number one trend in our industry. Today’s member is looking for fresh, healthy dining options as well as a variety of fitness options throughout the club. The past twenty years has given rise to both athleisure and wearable technology; both of which have forced clubs to revising dress code and cell phone policies.

We’ve had a blast helping clubs change their culture, their facilities or their programming to meet members’ needs today!

I am amazed how far RCS and the world has come in the past 20 years, and I cannot wait to see what the next 20 years holds for us all.

Stay tuned next week for more ways RCS and the world has changed in 20 years!



Whitney Reid Pennell, president of the RCS Hospitality Group (formerly Reid Consulting Services) is a celebrated management consultant, educator and speaker. RCS, the creators of the Food and Beverage Boot Camp™, specialize in operations consulting, strategic planning, food and beverage management, and training programs.


For more information, phone (623) 322-0773; or visit the RCS website at