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PT’s and Google’s manager experiment; the correlations.

The back story; Google set out to prove managers are surplus to effective businesses, conversely they found the 10 traits the best managers had. As I read each one, my mind automatically related it to my business in the fitness industry.

Here are my thoughts and what I sent to my facility staff:

  1. Be a good coach.

This one seems straight forward. Care about your clients. Ask questions that require buy in, don’t just give the answers.

2. Empower team and don’t micromanage.

Coach to create independency not dependency in your clients. We coach to educate clients, but they keep paying us because they love the atmosphere, community and want to support genuine people.

3. Create an inclusive team environment, showing concern for success and well-being.

In regard to success; we track numbers to make sure people are moving towards their goals.

If you don’t show up during the week; you’ll get a text from us checking in on your well-being.

Regarding an inclusive team environment if someone has to tell you they are inclusive they probably aren’t so I will let this do the talking for us:

A text we received from a client after a tough and demanding session one morning.
  1. Be productive and results orientated.

Clients record all of the weights lifted and reps completed during their sessions. This makes sure we have valuable data ensuring they are as previously mentioned, moving towards their goals and increasing strength but also being as productive as possible with each of their sessions.

5. Be a good communicator – listen and share information.

I coach my staff never to coach for the sake of coaching. Don’t over coach to fill silence or give the appearance of adding value. Be concise with your coaching cues, which is ultimately being good with your communication.

“If you take longer to explain the movement than it does to do the movement, learn it better so you can explain it better or find another movement.”

6. Have a clear vision/strategy for the team.

Identify what type of person each client is. What do they respond to best? Have a strategy for each session for them and build that into a strategy for them for each training block.

7. Support career development and discuss performance.

Support the genuine development and personal growth of each client. I am a big believer that what you do in the gym transcends the four walls of the gym and into life. When you challenge yourself and succeed (or fail) in the gym it fuels your growth outside of it.

8. Have the expertise to advise the team.

Keep learning. “I don’t know” is a valid answer but you don’t want to have to use it too often. You should have experienced as much as you can, of what you are asking your clients to do.

  • Have you tracked calories before you ask them to do it?
  • Have you done a 40 cal flat out?

It can help if you’ve had that injury and know how to rehab it, but it’s not required.

9. Collaborate.

Find or create a top shelf training environment. We all know how powerful mob mentality is (for positive and negative). It’s that simple.

10. Be a strong decision maker.

“I don’t come here to think, tell me what to do.”

I hear it often, particularly from clients in jobs that require large bandwidth all day in powerful positions. Don’t be indecisive, that creates doubt and devalues your service. Make sure you have done the work prior, know the plan for that client and execute it with self-confidence and belief.


11. Do what you say.

I added this one because it’s something I have found incredibly powerful. If you say you will send them a link, do it. Make sure you email them that programme or schedule within a reasonable time.