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Full Frontal Assault…health club chains need to stop.

By on April 17, 2008

It’s amazing to me the stupidity that many health club chains still exhibit. A friend of mine asked me to help her out with her workout because she felt she needed to amp it up for the marathon she’s running. She has been a member of Gold’s Gym for a couple of years which has now changed over to “Urban Active”. In order to serve a more diverse population.

I discussed my friends goals, time availability and where she was going to train. I produced a workout card that I give all of my clients when they finish a consultation with me and she headed over to Urban Active for her workout. Although I did my best to orientate her at my facility with exercises, reps and weights but the set up wasn’t the same so she asked an “Urban Active Trainer” for some help. Amazing but true all she got was a few weird looks and a comment about not knowing what a “triangle row” was. He also went on to say that most of the exercises on the workout card he wasn’t familiar with. So much for some help. Nevertheless I receive a call from my friend and she relays the story and asked me to accompany her to her next workout because she didn’t feel comfortable and thought she would perform the exercises incorrectly. I scheduled some time and off we went. This is where the bullshit began.

We walk in to Urban Active with my guest pass in hand. I’m informed that I need to fill out a form…name, address, age, fitness goals, you get the picture. BANG! Then it happened, “Mr. Castellano you need to meet with someone”. What? Why? I came here to workout with my friend. Are you friggin’ kidding me? Here comes “Smiling Bob”, in his blue dress shirt, looking like he wants to sell me a used car. I have to give it to him, his shirt was pressed to impress. I felt every nerve n my body surge. Before he even started in on his sales pitch rant, I told him to stop and that I was only there because his inadequate staff couldn’t help my friend and that I would just be working out with her this once. He didn’t know what to do but to let me workout.

I’m really not sure where these “Full Frontal Assault” sales people get their training but it has to stop. I could understand a mild greeting from an assistant manager, Manager or sales person to arrange rapport and a “If you have any questions I’d be glad to help” comment and let me be on my merry way. You don’t need to be a sales and marketing genius to know that if you present yourself with a friendly smile, say your name clearly, that’s a good first step in establishing a relationship with your potential customer. Whenever I get that full frontal assault I always feel like I’m under attack and will never buy what they are selling. Something I always try to do is get as much information from the potential customer, present myself in a way that would be positively memorable, let the person experience my workouts, products or websites and than follow up with them in a friendly manner and schedule a time to talk to them about how my products can help them.

If your talking at me…I’m not listening. Go sell your bullshit somewhere else.