How to deal with peer competion ?
So I'll try to keep this clear as beat I can
How would you handle the situation described below?
Long term client A refers you another client (b)
Client b forgets your name to the person with whom they are greeted at your training facility
Client b offers the name of client a as a referrence in hopes of find the recommended trainer(you)
Greeter does not persue clarification but instead signs client b up with their training services.
You mention to greeter that you had been expecting client b to be stopping by and ask if they had seen any people looking for you. ? Client b's name is offered to greeter incase they do come in ... Greeter admits they are training client b but was a "mistake".
Greeter promises their next new client to you as a apology
Greeter then receives a referred client (c) from b and their is no offer to hand them off to you. Or any client for that matter.
Both client b and c train 3x per week
What if any action would you take?
Think of disagreements or conflicts as opportunities to grow connection, understanding, and at the least, grow our own ability to communicate. Have a framework for your disscussion. Your session, might be prefaced with ground rules, such as: each person speaks without interruption, each person listens with compassion, each person will have an opprtunity to explain their view.
Think of this process as an adventure in discovery
Consider these concerns
Do you feel your thoughts, feelings and actions are devalued, or are they acknowledged as having merit?
Are you treated as an adversary or a colleague?
Has your freedom to make decisions been impinged on, or are you respected for your decisions?
Is your standing treated as inferior or are you recognized as deserving your standing?
Are you feeling unfulfilled in your present role or are you fulfilled?
Address these concerns in your dicussion.
This is an opportunity to come to some satisfactory resolution, ignoring it just escalates the problem.
It is good you are reaching out for a solution,
Take the higher road..."you get more bees with honey"
I am very fortunate to have the clientel I have and 90% of my clients are referrals. If you ever get to the point that you cannot take on another person...give that person to the greeter.
If I'm getting this right, client b was referred to you, but the "greeter" which I'm assuming is a fellow trainer, did not hand that client off to you. If the client did not request you, then let it go. If the client did request you and the other trainer quote ""stole"" the client from you, and then did one better by offering you the next client (c), but didn't come through, let it go. =)
The work place is no place to hold a grudge. If client c wanted to go with this particular trainer, then you should respect that. We all need business. I understand how difficult and frustrating it gets. The other trainer at my gym is a great guy, but I never see him soliciting clients and he gets a big contract at least once a month that's probably equivalent to my contract totals at this time. That's not to say he's not in there working hard when I'm not in there, and that's not saying he isn't a great trainer! He's got a year's experience on me as well!
Do I let this stuff bother me? Absolutely not! =) I'm happy to have a job! The best way to do well in a gym with multiple trainers, in my honest opinion, is to BE THERE AS OFTEN AS YOU CAN until you get a comfortable-size client base! You never know when someone might come into the gym and just decide to sign up for some sessions after joining the very same day. Happened to me just this week! Be patient, it takes a while to build a client base. That being said, I don't think any trainer should have more than 12 clients at any one time. That's just my personal opinion. The amount of work that I put into notes, program design and progression, etc. etc. outside of the gym for one client multiplied by 12 would be a comfortable full time job, and I wouldn't want to sacrifice session quality for larger numbers in my bank account. That's just me.
The best you can do about this is to roll with it. Respect the trainer and the clients' choices. Be humble and polite and don't hold a grudge because everyone else you meet will pick up on that instead of how you can help them as their personal trainer. If you're worth your weight as a trainer, I don't think that this particular situation will matter in the long run anyway. =) Know what I mean?
There is no grudge or petty in fighting here. I have the up most respect for everyone I work with and my clients well being ALWAYS comes first or as the case is here OTHER'S clients.
I've referred long term clients to other trainers I work with in the past for the benefit of the client. No problem with peer respect but with out going into much more detail than I have provided I need to find a solution that is more than roll with it
Thank you for taking the time to reply and I totally embrace the mind set you are offering to me. Know that I do hear what you are saying.
There are just extenuating circumstances that make it necessary for me to address this issue with the fellow trainer.
Thanks again for your in put
I am truly sorry to hear about this experience Personally, I know I would be very disappointed.
It appears that you are a person who values honesty and professionalism and that you don't approach matters in a cutthroat manner. If that is the case you should feel good because you have risen above unethical, unprofessional behavior.
If I might share two "proverbs" for lack of a better expression that my Dad shared with me growing up and one that I heard on the Oprah Winfrey show many years ago. Oprah was interviewing Maya Angelou.
Maya Angelou was sharing with her her life and what she has learned when people do unkind things to her. She used this proverb:
"When people show you who they are, BELIEVE THEM."
Your colleague demonstrated what she is made of without batting a lash. I am sure you have heard the expression, "forewarned is forearmed", "fool me once, shame on you, fool me twice, shame on me."
My Dad would also say "the higher the monkey climbs, the more it exposes." In due time, she will expose herself.
In life, Aminanda, sometimes it is the best course of action to give people enough rope to hang themselves. You can't control your colleagues behavior. You can only control yours.
The other encouraging thing my Dad would say, "Be your best you." Aminanda, you can't go wrong with that. Preserve your good name and your professional reputation. They have more value than all the clients you can ever acquire.
Personally, I think you came out the winner. Hold your head high, rise above it and continue to inspire the world to fitness.
I wish you all the success you dream.
If you are still working at this particular gym, I wish you much luck!
Mac Dodds M.A., CSCS
Live Your Best Years Now
Find that out from them.
Take care, Daniel
Peer competition helps keep us on our toes to do our best job. Try to keep business cards with you at all times to help prevent people from forgetting your name so they know exactly who to look for in the gym.
Natalie aka NAPS 2 B Fit.
Personally, I would have escalated to management, using client a as a witness for the referral.