Important lesson from selling in a Globo gym

Find the why!

The story to follow comes from a stand point of selling, but the lesson extends far past that and teaches a valuable lesson.

Once upon a time I was a personal trainer in a “globo gym” back in Canada.

It was a great place for me to get some experience with the general population as I had been pretty isolated in sports prior to that and it also taught me a lot of lessons about selling.

When I started working there I was confident in my skills as a coach/trainer from a standpoint of exercise knowledge, ability to teach, programming, etc. However, I had little idea how to sell. Until I started working there my work had been entirely driven by either people coming to work with me because they were very sport focused (Premier Strength) or coming to work with me privately because of referral. In contrast, when I started in the commercial gym business I wasn’t being sent clients, and instead had to learn to sell my work to potential clients.

People have tons of ideas of how to sell personal training and some work well, while others don’t at all. Some people rely on being really fit (short lived strategy usually), some rely on using fancy terminology and impressing clients, etc. However, from my time learning how to sell I found one important concept – “the why”

Now I have to give credit to the book Start with Why by Simon Sinek as this book helped me this concept.

Rarely do people go to a personal trainer just to get fit, there is a deeper underlying reason. Maybe their getting older and are struggling to keep up with their grand kids. It could be they saw their doctor and found out they’re on the verge of type 2 diabetes. Perhaps they’re a single guy who struggles with confidence and by getting strong/fit he thinks he’ll increase his confidence in talking to women. All of these are real possibilities and finding out why the person truly came in (not what they say at first) can help not only help sell, but also help improve their compliance with training. As I got better at figuring this out I started to find this out during the consultation with clients and my sales and sessions went way up.

People who “just want to get fit” skip sessions and don’t see great results. A grandma worried about not keeping up with her grandson won’t. The grandma with the right why in mind will choose to go to sessions and get better results when she doesn’t feel like it. She will opt to get up early and train before work, go after a long day of work, etc. All of the possible excuses will hold less weight when she has acknowledged the real why.

This same concept applies over to the rehab world. Instead of looking at this from the sales aspect consider the compliance with the home exercise program (HEP) and coming back to treatments. It might sound crazy but purely because someone is in pain or had surgery is not always a sufficient reason for their compliance. How often do people fail to do their HEP after a knee replacement and then not reach their goals appropriately?

If during the evaluation you really dig into what’s going on, what their emotional connection with the reason they’re there to see you, you can get a drastic improvement. Begin to ask more about how this issue is limiting them – not just the simplistic answers of basic activities of daily living – but the things they are passionate about and want to do again/pain free.

Move well, lift heavy, stay healthy,

The Strength Therapist




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