From Me To We! 3 Strategies For A Gym Owner To Align Coaches With Their Vision And Mission

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As a gym owner, building a thriving gym community goes beyond top-notch equipment, trendy workouts, and a fancy Inbody machine. It hinges on a crucial element: a team that’s fully aligned with your vision and mission.

But even the most passionate gym owner can face a frustrating reality – their team, despite their best efforts, just doesn’t seem to be on the same page. This misalignment can lead to a frustrating experience for both staff and members. Trainers might feel unsupported, nutrition coaches might struggle to get clients, and the overall gym culture can suffer.

Most gym owners start off running a gym business on their own. They have never had to explain to anyone what their goals are, how soon they want to achieve them, or why they are doing what they are. When the gym owner can finally hire staff to help them, it’s hard to let go of that “me” mentality.

Managing staff isn’t easy! In this article we will dive into the reasons why your fantastic team, from the high-energy trainers to the dedicated nutrition coaches, might not be perfectly in sync with your vision. We’ll also explore actionable steps every successful gym owner should take to bridge the gap and create a team that thrives together, ultimately leading to client success and retention.

clothes line with tags on them stating mission vision values

Breaking Down the Silos: A Gym Owner's Communication Is Key

Imagine this: you envision your gym as a wellness center. A welcoming space that caters to all fitness levels and nutrition goals. Yet, your coaches come across as intimidating, running around with their shirts off, and pushing clients beyond their limits. The nutrition coaches focus solely on restrictive diets and counting macros, leaving clients discouraged and ultimately quitting.

This disconnect stems from a lack of clear communication. Your team might not fully grasp the welcoming and inclusive atmosphere you’re striving for or understand the importance of a holistic approach and habit based nutrition coaching.

The Fix: Building a Culture of Open Communication

Regular team meetings are a must but take it a step further. Use these sessions to:

  • Deep Dive into Mission & Vision:

    Discuss specific aspects of your gym’s core values. Talk about your mission and vision so your coaches and staff can decide if they want to go down the road with you. And if they do, show them the way. Explain to them how they fit in.

    And after your coaches are aware how they fit in, creating some sort of vision board for your members would be a nice touch.

  • Open Forum Discussions:

    Encourage open communication and feedback. Ask questions like “How can we better promote ourselves?” or “How can we improve communication between nutrition coaches and fitness coaches?”, “Is there something you see that I may be missing?”, “What can I do to help you be successful?”

  • Communication Skills & Roleplaying:

    Focus on communication. Role-playing exercises can help trainers practice building rapport with clients and can help nutrition coaches refine their approach in consultations. Reps with learning how to communicate work just like reps in the gym. The muscle builds

fitness & nutrition coaches communication with the gym owner

From Nutrition Coaching To Fitness Coaching: Working Together For Team Alignment

Gyms offer a variety of services – mostly, personal training, nutrition coaching, and group fitness classes. If team members aren’t clear on how their roles contribute to the bigger picture, it can lead to missed opportunities for collaboration. When group class coaches and personal trainers don’t know a client has a nutrition coach in the gym, it can lead to missed opportunities and discussions.

The Fix: Fostering Collaboration and Building Bridges

  • Cross-Training Workshops:

    Organize “workshops” or training sessions where coaches and staff from different areas can learn about each other’s services. This cross-training builds understanding and allows them to see how their roles fit together to create a well-rounded client experience.

    For example, a workshop co-led by a trainer and a nutrition coach could explore the connection between exercise and post-workout nutrition needs. Additionally, coaches working in the fitness business should take part in learning about the nutrition part of the business. This can look like being a nutrition client for a month, or taking part in a nutrition challenge when the gym run ones.

  • Information Sharing with Client Consent:

    Develop a system for secure client information sharing (with client consent) between trainers, coaches, and other relevant staff. This allows for a holistic approach. We use SLACK at my gym. A channel specifically dedicated to “clients” is used to communicate about anything client related. When a new client signs up for the nutrition program, that is also doing PT or group class, the nutrition coaches add the client’s name and story to the SLACK channel.

  • Collaborative Case Studies:

    Dedicate a portion of team meetings to discussing real-life client scenarios. This allows your coaches to share their perspectives and brainstorm solutions together. For instance, discuss a client with weight loss goals who also struggles mentally with lifting heavy weight in class. How can the trainer, and nutrition coach, work together to create a supportive and effective plan for this client?

nutrition and fitness coaches working out with the gym owner

Beyond Routine: Transforming Your Team into Changemakers

People are motivated by more than just a paycheck. If your team feels like they’re simply going through the motions, it can lead to a lack of engagement and disconnect from your vision. They might not see how their daily tasks contribute to the gym’s overall success, especially if their roles seem isolated from each other.

The Fix: Building a Team That Feels Valued and Inve

  • Recognition and Celebration:

    Empower your team! Recognize and celebrate individual and team achievements. A coach who consistently receives positive client feedback about their encouraging and adaptable approach deserves recognition. Highlight a nutrition coach’s success story in helping a client manage their busy lifestyle and weight loss journey. Public recognition during team meetings, shout-outs on social media, or even a simple handwritten thank-you note can go a long way in boosting morale.

  • Professional Development Opportunities:

    The most successful gym owners provide opportunities for professional development to their coaches. This could involve covering part or all of the costs of continuing education, conferences, or online courses related to their specific areas of expertise. A group class coach might benefit from a certification in injury prevention, while a nutrition coach might be interested in attending a workshop on the latest advancements in post-workout nutrition for athletes.

    Investing in your team’s professional growth shows you value their contributions and are committed to their continued success. Not to mention additional certifications provide credibility to your programs making them more appealing to potential clients.

  • Shared Decision-Making:

    Involve your coaches in decision-making processes whenever possible. This could involve brainstorming new program ideas, coming up with new gym swag, soliciting feedback from gym members, brainstorming on new community partnerships for the nutrition program, or even including them in the interview process for new hires. When team members feel their voices are heard and valued, they’re more likely to feel invested in the gym’s success and take ownership of their roles.

group class and fitness coaches hugging it out showing team unity

Building a United Front: The Power of a Cohesive Coaching Team

By prioritizing clear communication, inviting collaboration, and empowering your staff, you can bridge the gap between your vision and its execution. A united team translates into a more positive and effective experience for your members.

Here are some additional tips to consider:

  • Team-Building Activities:

    Schedule occasional team-building activities outside of the gym environment. This could involve volunteering together for a local cause like cleaning up leaves for an elderly person, participating in a group fitness class together at a local competitors gym like orangetheory fitness, or simply enjoying a lunch out. These activities help build camaraderie and trust among your coaches, strengthening the overall team dynamic.

  • Lead by Example:

    As the gym owner, your behavior sets the tone for the entire team. Be approachable, communicate openly, and demonstrate the values you want your team to embody. Your passion and enthusiasm for your gym’s mission will be contagious.

Wrap Up

Owning a gym is hard, but remember, a strong team is the cornerstone of any successful gym owner, and you can’t do this alone. The gym industry is full of failed facilities because the owner didn’t realize how challenging it would be to run a successful business in the fitness industry. By having open communication, collaboration, and empowering your staff, you will create a team that thrives together, putting you two steps ahead of your competition.

This united front will lead to a more positive and rewarding experience for both your staff and your members, making your gym the go-to destination for all things nutrition, fitness and wellness. When everyone is working towards the same goals, the possibilities for success are endless.


Additional Free Help For Gym Owners And Coaches

WATCH & LISTEN: How To Do A Health Check On Your Nutrition Program – HERE

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WATCH & LISTEN: Grow Your Business For Gym Owners With Michael Michalowicz – HERE