Do you ever have to ask your Coaches or staff to do something you know they don’t want to do?
Take for example cleaning the floor. It’s a long and tedious task at most gyms, taking hours to first vacuum, then mop and finally allow it to dry. It often has to be done in off hours. When I left my gym Friday night, one of our Coaches was pulling out the floor scrubber. I don’t think it’s what he really wanted to be doing on a Friday night, but it had to be done.
And that’s why you’re probably assigning these tasks — they need to get done. You can’t go months without cleaning your floor; the bathroom and shop need to be restocked; equipment has to be organized daily. Often, it can come down to how you ask your staff to accomplish the tasks that turns it from drudgery to them doing their part for the greater good.
Dale Carnegie in “How to Win Friends and Influence People” gave six guidelines to help the effective leader. The last was about requesting someone to do something: “When you make your request, put it in a form that will convey to the other person the idea that he personally will benefit.”
Carnegie gave the example of a guy named John who was asked to clean out a stockroom before visitors were shown it. At first the employer just said he needed it done and John was the one who would do it. But then Carnegie pointed out how telling John the benefits – this way it won’t have to be done later and he will play his part in providing a good company image – would make John more willing to do it. Sure, no one wants to clean out a closet; but if they know the why behind it and how they will benefit, you might get a more cooperative person.
Think about how this can apply in your own Box. How can you let your Coach know he or she will benefit from cleaning the floor or stocking the shelves? Could you share how members will be appreciative or that they are building the business into something great? If you get them onboard with your idea, seeing how they benefit in doing the task, you just might find less complaining and more doing.
Granted, this doesn’t always work as Carnegie pointed out. But it could increase your overall effectiveness as a leader. “If you increase your successes by even a mere 10 percent, you have become 10 percent more effective as a leader than you were before, and that is your benefit,” wrote Carnegie.
Find one situation where you can apply this today, and then execute!