By: Jim Thomas
Are you and your managers doing everything you can to create a culture of accountability in sales and sales management?
I hear this frequently from gym owners…yes, we hold them accountable, but the job is still not being done. Of course, it begs the question; exactly what are you holding them accountable for? What are the consequences? Are you even holding them accountable for the right thing?
Here are some things to consider when creating the culture of accountability in your gym:
1. Get your expectations up
First, you need to stop accepting mediocrity and raise your expectations. Too many gym owners and sales managers have lowered the goal and lowered the expectation….this is the first place to start - GET-YOUR-EXPECTATIONS-UP. Then you must raise your action level to reach these new expectations. Remember this; never lower the goal, but instead, raise your action level. NO EXCUSES! Don’t justify poor performance.
2. Results not friendship
Of course, building staff rapport is important. However, for too many gym owners and managers it is more important to be liked by the staff than to be respected and to reach the expectations you have set for them. Everyone should be judged on their production and numbers, not on how well-liked they are. If you turn a blind-eye to this it can get out of control in a hurry.
3. Take responsibility
This will never become important to others until it is first important to you. The worst thing you can do it raise the expectations, but then fail to take responsibility yourself. YOU must take responsibility. It’s not the weather, the price, the time of year, the competition, the gym, the members, etc., it’s you. Ultimately, it’s the only thing you have control over.
4. Manage the process
You need to focus on and track the behaviors and process that will get you the desired results. If you stay focused on the desired behaviors each and every day, you will be on track to get the results you are seeking. Such things as a telephone inquiry log and script, outbound call script, guest register, needs analysis, price presentation, point of sale referrals, follow up calls, etc are just a few.
5. Create awareness
It’s always interesting how many owners have not done the math on exactly what they need and what the sales staff should be doing. All the way from sales, leads produced each day, daily appointments, outbound calls, etc. Does everyone know the expectations? Have your manager’s call in their numbers each day and immediately feed this back to them as it compares to quota. Manage based on these objectives.
6. Grow your pipeline
Ultimately, you’ll be judged on the numbers you produce each month. It’s crucial that you continually fill your pipeline for future sales. Be sure you inspect what you expect on the daily activities required to successfully build your sales pipeline.
7. Staff Recruiting
One more thing, I see this quite a bit, club owners and managers feel reluctant to hold key staff accountable because they don’t have a suitable replacement if the staffer left the company. In a sense, they end up being held hostage by their staff. The key is to implement a process for recruiting, training and hiring staff. If you always have capable recruits in the wings, it will give you the confidence to run your business in the proper manner.
Now, be accountable!
Jim Thomas is the founder and president of Fitness Management USA Inc., a management consulting and turnaround firm specializing in the fitness and health club industry. With more than 25 years of experience owning, operating and managing clubs of all sizes, Thomas lectures and delivers seminars and workshops across the country on the practical skills required to successfully build teamwork and market fitness programs and products.
Visit his Web site at: www.fmconsulting.net or www.jimthomasondemand.com.