Networking—whether to increase your client base or develop colleague contacts—is an essential aspect of business development. Yet how many times have you attended networking mixers only to forget the names of many of the people you meet? Never forget a name again with these tips from Mary Bratcher, MA, DipLC, co-owner of The BioMechanics in San Diego:
Ask the person for a business card, and read the name printed on it aloud. This strategy is useful for visual learners who need more than auditory cues to remember a name.
Regardless of our roles within the realm of fitness, communication unites all of us. Defined in Neuro-Linguistic Programming™ (NLP™) circles as “the response you get regardless of your intention” (Andreas & Faulkner 1996), communication takes place in the verbal, visual and kinesthetic arenas. It can be broken down to approximately 7% words, 38% tone and 55% body language (Bandler & Grinder 1975). The following refresher will help you hone your communication skills in these key areas.
Those who follow Internet trends have probably heard of Twitter (www.twitter.com) or are already using it. If not, it might be worth your time to find out about this cleverly named service. Launched in 2006, Twitter is described on its site as “a service [to enable] friends, family and co-workers to communicate and stay connected through the exchange of quick, frequent answers to one simple question: What are you doing?”
Imagine sending a short, preworkout motivational note to a client without seeing, texting or calling him. What if you could find new boot-camp ideas from top trainers around the world without ever doing a keyword search on Google? Imagine developing genuine relationships with industry colleagues, having never met or e-mailed them. Now envision doing all of these simultaneously on a free, Web-based platform in no more than 140 characters.
Are you looking for effective ways to help clients maintain weight loss? Telephone counseling is as effective as face-to-face counseling and more effective than education alone, according to a study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine (2008; 168 , 2347–54).
As a group fitness supervisor, you’ve worked hard to earn your spot as a leader. Perhaps it was your industry experience, your sparkling personality or your connections with the right people that landed you in a position of authority.
Since the first generation of the iPhone was announced in the beginning of 2007, Wikipedia reports that cell-phone usage has evolved significantly (2008). From their interactive interface to their increased functionality, mobile phones have made our communication more dynamic, convenient and immediate.
With the right education and motivation, anyone can copy the same products and services you offer. But they can’t copy you. Every individual in your business contributes a piece to the puzzle. However, your leadership sets the standard for employees. Your personal values and beliefs develop your brand; you then attract like-minded employees and customers.
Are you already communicating with clients via cell phone or e-mail? If not, you might want to start. Numerous studies have shown that social support and individualized feedback are powerful tools for helping people make and keep healthy habits. Recent research presented at the American College of Sport Medicine’s 55th Annual Meeting--held in Indianapolis in May 2008--highlighted the value of e-mail messages for improving attitude, intention and exercise behavior in inactive young adults.
Remember the days when cell phones were simply used for making phone calls? Well, today’s mobile devices are equipped to do more than just have conversations. Via cell phones, users are now accessing the Web, text messaging friends, taking digital photos, streaming videos and of course, making phone calls.