For a variety of reasons, as a group fitness director you need to meet with your instructors regularly. However, actually getting instructors to attend department meetings can be a daunting task. Ali Helms, fitness director at the Jewish Community Alliance in Jacksonville, Florida, offers tips for hosting a successful—and well-attended—department meeting:

  • Survey for the Best Day and Time. Go with what suits the majority, and stick to that day and time from then on.
  • Avoid Holding Too Many Meetings. Shoot for one meeting per quarter. Most instructors teach at multiple facilities and cannot afford to attend numerous meetings.
  • Make It Mandatory. Ask instructors to RSVP, and hold them accountable. Give plenty of notice so they can plan for it.
  • Pay for Participation. Create a meeting pay rate that is above minimum wage but less than the instructor rate.
  • Have a Plan. Avoid discussing items that can be handled via e-mail. The meeting should be for planning, team building and training only. Create an agenda and print a copy for each person to refer to during the meeting.
  • Stay on Task. Avoid idle chitchat and off-topic diversions that will interrupt your schedule. The meeting should last no longer than an hour.
  • Offer Incentives. If your budget allows, provide light food, refreshments, awards, prizes or other similar items. This will make it seem more like an event than a boring meeting.