Some people learn hiring lessons the hard way, but you don’t have to because many people who have made mistakes before you have left great advice on what to avoid when you’re trying to staff your gym/studio/school/center….
Mario Ashley, owner of CrossFit Naples, shares the five major mistakes in staffing made by Big Box owners. He has taken their mistakes and applied them to his own experiences in his gym!
1. HIRING BASED ON A GUT FEELING
Coaches rarely have all the skills they need when they first come to us.
It’s our job to teach them these skills if we want to have a killer staff. What you should really be looking for in a new coach is potential.
Base your decisions about potential coaches on the following:
– Do they show up 4-5 times a week to work out?
– Do they follow the Paleo diet?
– Do they stay after class to work on mobility?
– Have they signed up or plan to sign up for a Level 1 cert?
– Are they friendly and social with the community?
If the answer is ‘yes’ to several of the previous questions, then the prospective coach in question has more potential than another candidate you just “have a good feeling about.”
2. ACCEPTING THE FIRST APPLICANT THAT COMES ALONG
The fact that someone is Level 1 certified doesn’t mean crap.
I know we’ve all seen some of the people who show up to those certs. I remember one participant who showed up at my cert that had never done CrossFit, was horribly out of shape and admitted that the only reason he was at the cert was because he wanted to open up his own CF gym. He had a long way to go in becoming a great coach.
Always hire from within. Those that understand your program and believe in it enough to pay your premium rates are the people that you want to consider as potential coaches.
3. RUSHING CANDIDATES THROUGH THE HIRING PROCESS
Don’t get so excited about your first prospective coach that you hand him or her the entire 40 page Instructor Training Program (ITP) Guide (found in Module #19) and say “read this.”
I made that mistake and scared away two potential coaches, because they got overwhelmed.
Try this instead: create some context for ITP first by hosting a one hour meeting for anyone curious about the program. Use this time to explain to them why this is such a great opportunity and to answer their questions. Then, for those who are truly on board, you can give them the tools to get started.
If a prospective coach balks at the 40 pages of reading, at this point, then you know this is not a great candidate for ITP.
4. PROMOTING AN APPLICANT AS A FAVOR
Business owners should never risk results because they’re focused on protecting someone’s feelings.
You may feel sorry for a potential coach that has been in the ITP program for 6 months and still isn’t ready to be on the floor, but giving them their own class anyway is a mistake.
Your processes need to be based on successful business practices that can be duplicated and replicated. So always be sure that all of your coaches also excel at what you do so well.
Remember, it’s the consistent excellence at your box that makes students willing to pay top dollar.
Your members respect you for your entire staff’s expertise, and professionalism; don’t ruin that because you feel bad for a coach who isn’t fully developed. Develop that person into a BAMF coach instead. Then maybe… just maybe… you can put them ‘on the floor.’
5. COMPROMISING QUALITY TO KEEP A SHIFT FILLED
If the people who are running your classes aren’t fulfilling their duties, FIRE them.
These are Mario’s top 5 mistakes with comments…
We hope you find this useful in alleviating some of your staffing frustrations.