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Why hire a Membership Sales Coach when I already have a Sales Manager in my Gym?

Fitness Center Broker, Fitness Center Valuation, Gym Broker, Gym Equipment, Gym Valuation, Gyms for Sale, Health Club Broker, Health Club Valuation, Health ClubValuation, new gym start up November 16, 2018

Most health clubs already have a membership sales manager or someone who is in charge of membership sales production in some capacity, so why hire a sales coach for the membership department? Many sales managers are not trained in the subtleties of effective gym sales training nor have they developed the necessary skills and tools to be effective sales leaders. The most common way to hire a gym sales manager is to simply promote your best sales person in the membership department. This logic suggests this person is the most qualified to lead the membership sales team based on their past membership sales achievements. This type of promotion by necessity is common, but not commonly successful. In the process you may even lose your top membership sales performer when their leadership abilities fail to match their sales ability.

The key reason being: Great gym sales people don’t often make great gym sales managers.

Why? This is largely due to the behaviors inherent to traditional individual gym salesmanship. At the risk of generalizing, these individuals can be highly competitive by nature and many can often be found running by their own set of rules when comes to making a membership sale. Many sales superstars can be described as egocentric, disorganized, manipulating, persuasive and let’s not forget charming. Often embodying the true entrepreneurial spirit, the sales superstar by nature will just get out there and make things happen. And yes of course, they may even cut a corner or two in the process. This poses an interesting but challenging dilemma for their gym sales managers or club General Manager.

To promote such individuals to a gym sales manager is to promote the same individual behaviors. More often than not, these behaviors are challenging to replicate successfully without ramification. The decision to do so will play a huge role in developing your gym sales culture. This is why so many gym sales teams operate by the 80/20 principle, with 80% of the membership sales being generated by 20% of the membership sales team and the rest merely making up the numbers. Usually the successful few are doing things very differently based on what they know or have learned in the role through their own positive and negative experiences in sales or in the gym industry. The normally enthusiastic but struggling majority is left to make up the numbers. Gym sales models that demonstrate this type of unbalanced success are clearly lacking the right leadership, sales support and sales coaching structure in their gym.

A gym sales coach’s role in the above scenario would be to coach the membership sales manager and membership sales team members to demonstrate common habitual behaviors and skills across the entire team for optimum membership sales team performance in the health club membership sales department.

Now, go close a sale!

Jim Thomas is the founder and president of Fitness Management USA Inc., a management consulting, turnaround and brokerage firm specializing in the gym and sports industry. With more than 25 years of experience owning, operating and managing clubs of all sizes, an Outsourced CEO, Thomas lectures and delivers seminars, webinars and workshops across the globe on the practical skills required to successfully to overcome obscurity, improve sales, build teamwork and market fitness programs and products. In addition, his company will buy gym equipment from gyms liquidating or closing. Visit his Web site at: www.fmconsulting.net or www.jimthomasondemand.com.

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A Recommendation of Jim Thomas, President of Fitness Management and Consulting

by Norm Cates, Club Insider Publisher and Tribal Leader Since 1993

Jim Thomas is a talented, experienced, dedicated, determined, and very professional expert in the health, racquet and sportsclub industry. A club industry veteran of over 30 years, Jim has been a Club Insider Contributing Author since March of 2006, when he joined our Club Insider Contributing Author Team. During that time Jim has written and contributed 50 articles which have been published during our 284 months of Club Insider publishing. Jim Thomas is a truly great asset to our publication, and to our wonderful industry, and he can be trusted to deliver great results, over and over, no matter what the challenge.

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When is it Time to Sell Your Health Club or Gym?

gymsaleMany factors will tell you when it is time:

  • Owner’s “burn out” Owner’s or key employee’s health problems
  • Business relocation or rerouting of expressways
  • Lease expires and you do not want to renew for another term
  • Changing technology Get estate in order
  • Not interested in investing long-term capital
  • Children do not want to enter family business
  • Under-capitalized
  • Largest accounts in financial difficulty
  • Bank unwilling to renew credit lines
  • Supplier problems
  • Staff problems
  • Customer’s habits changing
  • Seeks retirement
  • Wants to cash out and go fishing

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Whatever the reason, you will need to plan an orderly transition to new ownership with less involvement on your part.

For more info, please call us at 214-629-7223.

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