CONTENT BROUGHT TO YOU BY: Power Systems
What is the missing piece of your club's best year to date? The Dream Team. No, I don't mean the legendary 1992 USA Olympic basketball team. I mean your dream team of personal trainers. They are your make it or break it, bread and butter. The Dream Team equals Your Dream Year. With around 12 percent of your total annual memberships joining in January and February, you don't want to merely settle for their EFT on membership dues—you want to add personal training onto that as well. So, where do you begin?
First, be a realist and analyze your metrics:
- How many sessions/members on monthly PT EFT do you have?
- How many sessions/members on monthly PT EFT is your goal?
- How many trainers do you need to reach that goal? (Do you have enough? If not, you'll need more.)
Next, the million-dollar question: Do you have the right trainers on your team? You can have tons of trainers, but if you don't have the right personality types, you have nothing. So let's begin building that team. There are personality traits vital for every trainer to possess:
Outgoing. How in the world can you expect someone to drum up new business with complete strangers if you're dealing with an introvert? During the interview process, ask situational and example-based questions to see how outgoing that candidate really is.
Sales ability. You might get someone with a great personality but with no sales ability. That is a deal-breaker. Your trainers have to be able to sell. They are selling themselves and the ability to drastically change someone's life, after all.
Realizes own value. Over the span of a few weeks or months, trainers get to personally know their clients and at some point feel bad for having to charge their clients. You want trainers who know they are valuable fitness professionals that are worth every penny.
Passionate. Yes, passionate is an often over-used word but completely true to the heart of fitness. You can visually detect a passion for fitness in trainers. You can observe if the trainer practices what they preach. This doesn't mean they have to look like Jillian Michaels, but they must move with good form and live a healthy lifestyle.
Notice that in all of these vital traits, I did not list knowledge or certifications, and that's for a reason. You can teach knowledge, you can learn programming or research new trends, but passion, personality and the ability to sell are innate.
Last, you will not find everything you need in a trainer in one person. Think of your training staff as a baseball team. You need outfielders, infielders, a catcher and pitchers. It is the entire team working cohesively that gets the win. By the same token, the strengths of all your trainers should complement each other and make up for the weaknesses of the others. Different clients have different needs and will respond and relate to trainers for various reasons. It is important to hire trainers of all ages, genders and races as you piece together a team that meets the diverse needs of your member base.
Speaking of member base, it is a great place to discover the first of one of your key players on your training team: The Transformed Trainer. Your fragile eggs coming in will be able to relate to this member-turned-trainer who can provide the empathy needed to motivate them. They have been there themselves. They were overweight and unhealthy, but over time they evolved into a fit, healthy living example.
You'll also want to have The Scholar Trainer. This person loves learning the latest training methods, leading workshops for staff, and keeps things fresh not only for his or her clients but also for the whole team.
Similar to The Scholar Trainer, but more specific, The Specialist Trainer is an expert in his or her area. Whether it's stretching and mobility, kettlebells or sport-specific training, this person knows his or her stuff and can be trusted to get results in a specific area of need.
The Veteran Trainer has been training since crazy pants, survived the thong leotard era and is still going strong through the age of the #gymselfie. The Vet possesses a wealth of knowledge and bank full of training methods that will prevent his or her clients' programming from becoming stagnant. He or she will probably wind up being a natural leader among the rest of your trainers, especially since they will probably make up your largest category of trainers: The Newbie Trainer.
The Newbie Trainer can be either so new the ink hasn't yet dried on the certificate or just new to you. Either way, this person brings a new vibe to your team, excitement and a fresh face to your members. The Newbie will often be young and impressionable, occupying more of your time than the others. Time spent with them is time well spent to mold them into starters on your team.
You want your client base to not only be in sessions with their primary trainer but also with other trainers on the team. Set up that client with a session for stretching essentials to help them finally unlock their hips or help them shock the system with a brand new training method. Chances are, when you see this happen, you'll also see clients with great results and lots of referrals.
Build it and they will come. Get out there with your Dream Team in 2015 and hit a home run.
Erin Gray is the education coordinator at Power Systems Inc. and an industry professional for more than seven years. When she isn't helping Power Systems employees learn about the latest products on the market or working a trade show, you can find her researching all the latest fitness trends, teaching a cycling class or doing CrossFit.