Category Archives: what sets you apart

Who Are You To Share Your Expertise?

With a background as a Fitness Expert and a Life Coach I get to meet some pretty awesome people. I recently met a fellow Fitness Professional for coffee so that we could do some brainstorming, get to know each other better and see where our work could align. I’m all about collaborations and partnerships, I truly believe we are all more successful when we help each other (that’s a post for another time).

And what came up in our conversation has come up in a few different conversations recently and so I feel that it’s an important topic to write about. So, what did we talk about? We were talking about different ways that this Fitness Professional could generate income in her business. As a Personal Trainer it gets really exhausting training people one at a time (a similar experience that many Life Coaches face). You have to train a lot of people in a week to make a decent living. As I learned more about her background and her passion it seemed so clear to me, why don’t you offer workshops for other Fitness Professionals around these areas of expertise that you have? Her response, “can I do that”? Which was then followed up by questions around is she qualified, who would want to hear her speak, what does she have to offer? All those self-doubting questions.

That got me on my soap box in a real hurry….

  1. You have your own unique blend of education, training and experience. Nobody has the exact same combination. That makes you unique. That makes how you see things and interpret things unique;
  2. Any time you teach a person something inevitably some of it will be new information and a lot of it will be things they’ve heard before. But as I’m sure all of you can appreciate, when you go to a learning event you don’t retain everything you hear and you certainly don’t apply everything. We remember and implement whatever information seems most relevant to our current circumstance. You take a similar workshop years later, your current circumstance is different and therefore what you remember and implement will also be different. Relearning information is actually really important;
  3. You may describe something or say something with the exact words that someone in the audience needs to hear for that concept to make sense. Think about your own learning experiences. You likely learned about a topic from a few different people and there will be that one person who says it in such a way that your brain instantly gets it. You could be that light bulb moment for someone else.

And a few days later I was listening to a presentation by Suzanne Evans and she touched on a similar topic. One of the things she reminded us of is that to a second grader a third grader is a God. There will always be people who know more than you and there will always be people who know less than you. To the people who know more, there will likely be some reminders in what you say that they needed to hear. To the people who know less than you, they will be in awe with how much you have to offer and contribute.

So, regardless of your industry, there is always an opportunity to share your unique education and experience, to remind people of information that perhaps they have forgotten and to inspire the people who are following in your footsteps.

Who are you to share your wisdom, insight and expertise with others? Who are you not to?

P.S. If public speaking scares you to death, get help. Join a Toastmasters group, find a speaking coach, whatever you need to do so you can feel confident.

Get Your Shit Together Or Get Out Of My Industry

I love to teach people. I am a born teacher. And in any course that a person takes with me, they will be guaranteed to experience at least two or three “soap box” moments. You see, there are certain topics that I get really passionate about, really heated about. So you will notice that this post is a bit more “pithy” than usual.

This particular soap box moment is about professionalism. And if you are not in the industry I use as the example here, simply insert any industry of choice I would bet that the story holds true.

Part of the work I do is teaching and training people who want to become fitness professionals. Now I don’t know how fitness professionals are viewed where you are, but in most places I have been they are not viewed the way I would hope that they would be.

Let’s see why…

Step into your garden variety fitness centre or gym and watch the front desk staff, personal trainers and group fitness instructors for a moment. What do you see? In most cases it is a front desk person who is too busy reading the latest issue of Muscle Magazine to bother even making eye contact with you. It is a personal trainer who for $60 an hour will watch you work out while they eat their boiled chicken and steamed broccoli while they check Facebook on their phone. And it is a group fitness instructor who sees their class as a way to work out while they get paid.

Now, please understand, I am not painting all fitness professionals with this brush. There are really amazing front desk staff, personal trainers and group fitness instructors out there. The challenge is, like most of us, the general public who come to us fitness professionals for help, remember (and share) the bad experiences more freely than the good.

So, think about how you show up in your workplace. How to you interact with your customers, what level of service do you provide? Now imagine that you had that same experience in your doctors office. Imagine walking in and the receptionist just sat there reading a magazine and never looked up. Imagine having your doctor eat their lunch and check Facebook on their phone while you are trying to explain the reason for your visit. You would be outraged, you would be appalled.

So why aren’t we appalled when this happens in a gym? Why do we accept sub-standard customer service? It’s time that the general public, and fitness professionals alike, demand more from our industry. The amazing fitness professionals dedicate their heart and soul to mastering what they do, to continually learning how to help their clients even better. And they are getting a bad name from all those other fitness people who really just want an easy paycheque and a free gym membership.

True fitness professionals are educated, dedicated and do what they do because they love helping others. If the staff at the gym that you go to, or work at, don’t fit that bill, I suggest you take your business elsewhere.

[Tweet “Enough with the crappy service and the lack of professionalism”]

It’s time for these people to get their shit together or get out of my industry.

What sets you apart?

So I am on this quest to teach Personal Trainers how to incorporate some simple Life Coaching tools into the work that they are already doing with their clients. I have presented my model at a few conferences now and the feedback has been astounding, Personal Trainers love it! I presented at another conference yesterday and as part of my pre-presenting prep routine I try and think of the questions that participants might ask me. And a funny thing happened as I thought of this….a question came up that I have never thought of before and that has never been asked before. And the more I think of it the more it seems that this should be the first questions that Personal Trainers ask.

“Where do I get the time to use these tools with my clients, my sessions are already jam packed.”

Here’s the simple answer…..Not all your clients will be ready for this type of work. The clients who are ready, they will love taking 10-15 mins of a session here and there to use the Life Coaching tools. So, it will require that you redesign a session every so often so that you have those 10-15 mins that you need. And your clients will love it! By working with them in this way they will have an entirely different training experience. We live and work in an experience based economy, it is no longer good enough to simply offer a service. You must offer an experience with your service, this is what will set you apart from other Personal Trainers.

Remember, if you (and your client) believe in something you will make the time that you need for it. If you don’t see how you could possibly make the time to work with your clients in this way then this isn’t a fit for you right now.

If you haven’t had a chance to take this workshop with me yet and you are interested, drop me an email ( I am in the process of developing this training into an online workshop and can send you the details when it is ready. Or, if you are really keen, and I mean really keen, email me right away as I have a few spots open for a free pilot program I am offering “Life Coaching Skills Bootcamp for Personal Trainers”.