Back to business basics (part 1)
Over the next 4 weeks we'll be providing you with some key rules to follow for business success. This week's article kicks things off with a return to the basics. We hope you enjoy it!
In these hard economic times only the best will survive. There is money to be made out there - you just have to make sure that you are providing excellent customer service. This is one area that today’s personal trainers are neglecting, yet it is what will ensure you keep your current clients, secure a good reputation and help you attract more clients through word of mouth - the cheapest and best form of advertising.
Imagine you book a hotel; the brochure says it has a nice pool, free Wi-Fi, and flat screen TV but when you get there you find they don’t have any electricity or any beds in the room. This is what is happening with a lot of PTs. They are focussing on the extras and forgetting the basics of providing a good service!
In this series of four articles The basics, The programming, The sessions and finally Outside the gym we will give you ideas on how you can improve your offering to clients by getting back to business basics.
The absolute basics
1) Be a role model – you don’t have to have enormous muscles and a six-pack but you should at least be able to show your clients that you practice what you preach.
2) Listen to your clients – I have had clients say to me that their last personal trainer didn’t truly listen to them. Without understanding their aims, needs and preferences you can’t put together a suitable programme and without their feedback when they are exercising you can’t ensure that programme is being implemented effectively.
3) Get some initial data – circumference measurements, body fat percentage, VO2 max for example, and retest regularly to show that training works. SMART goals are very important for this. Lack of confidence coupled with laziness tends to be the main reasons trainers don’t use measurements; you’re not doing your job as a PT if you don’t know what is happening to your clients’ body.
4) Return calls – if a client or potential client leaves you a message then get back to them within 24hours, otherwise they may get the impression you don’t care.
5) Do what you say you will - if you make any promises/commitments or simple comments such as ‘next week I’ll bring different equipment’ - then stick to what you have said. Show you can be true to your word and reliable – this is key when clients think about recommending you or if you want them to write testimonials.
Be sure to come back next week for more tips on programming...