Gym Owners: Are You Appreciating Your Coaches and Clients in the Right Way?

While financial success will go a long way in keeping your coaches happy, it’s not always about money. We’re social, emotional human beings, and we all need to feel appreciated beyond our paycheque.

That being said, we don’t all show and accept appreciation in the same way. So while you might think giving your coach a gift card to show your appreciation for how hard he worked last month will help him feel appreciated, he might respond better to verbal praise or to you taking him out for lunch.

Just like the five love languages—gift-giving, acts of service, words of affirmation, quality time and physical touch—think of this as the workplace love languages.

Some people feel appreciated if you help them with a task, or if you spend quality time with them outside of work, while others are more independent workers and don’t need or want help, yet they still want to quietly hear the words, “Good job!” Others need verbal praise in public to know that you appreciate them, and others still react well to a small gift or token of appreciation.

It’s on you, the boss man, to figure out what’s going to keep your coaches feeling loved and appreciated, and ultimately committed to your business for the long term.

The same concept can, of course, be applied to your clients.

We break clients into four categories:

1. The Doer:

This person likes to stay on task and get work done. He wants to be challenged and will complete everything you ask him to, but doesn’t have a lot of patience for chit chat. This client values things like class starting on time. For a client like this, praise his results and performance.

2. The Socializer:

This person is people-oriented. He wants others to succeed, too, and often offers help to new athletes. He likes big classes, and isn’t concerned with his performance as much as he is about having fun and enjoying the hour. This client loves team workouts and doesn’t want to be pushed too hard.

Here for the fun…

3. The Relator:

This client likes one-on-one conversation and attention (a perfect hybrid membership candidate). He wants to connect closely with those around him more than he is concerned about his numbers. He’s at the gym for deeper relationships to add meaning to his life. Praise him for how he encourages others and adds to the community.

4. The Thinker:

This client wants to understand all the details. He likes having a workout plan that he’s intent on executing. He will read the blog on the website before he comes to class to make sure he has a thorough understanding of the day. He often asks ‘Why.’ Help this client by giving him as much useful information as possible.

Yet another reason the gym isn’t just about the workout…

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