I understand some of the comments about using the word “fire” (I guess it’s a bit harsh) but I don’t have a particular problem with the word. In my opinion, no matter what you call it, the end result is that you terminated the relationship. “Yes,” I have had to “terminate my relationship” with a client before. I believe that the client-trainer relationship is a partnership. A partnership of trust, communication and mutual respect. I got into this profession because I love helping people help themselves. I love to coach, train, educate and communicate. When the relationship begins to breakdown, it’s important to try to fix it, or when it cannot be fixed (for whatever reason), in my opinion, it’s time to part the ways.
I consider most of my clients to also be friends. Over time, you can’t relate to someone in such a personal way as we do as trainers, and not establish a friendship with them. I entertain my clients with monthly “client dinners,” attend my young clients’ sporting events, am invited by my clients to their important events, and include some of them as subjects or models in some of my articles. But, there have been times over my 17-year training career, when, for whatever reason, a client and I are not on the same page and the relationship has to be terminated (“you’re fired!”).
Yes, I have “fired” client/s in the past and I don’t find it too harsh of a word to use. My client/s hired me for a specific reason and if I did not hold up to my resposibilites and goals set forth..well, I can also be fired.
So, it”s a two way street…I expect my clients to get their utmost value from my services and achieve their goals mutually greed upon. And in return, I expect them to follow the advice provided to them and make an honest effort to achieve them. In most cases the client/s I have fired did return, primarily because they knew how important it was to make a lifestyle change.
I also have had a few clients where things just didn’t work out between us. It is bound to happen. I wouldn’t call it firing a client. It is honestly trying to help the client find the right fit for them. If it appears that it isn’t me, I honestly tell them that I feel they might be happier with someone else as their trainer.
I’ve had two clients that I transferred because they had very negative attitudes and would put me down consistently. Their attitude had nothing to do with me, it was their own personal problems that caused them to be that way. After removing them from my schedule I felt lighter, more free and was able to free up room for people who were better aligned with me.