How to Have That Tough Conversation

Every gym has a member that, when he walks through the door, the coach and the members think, "Dammit, he's in my class."

Certainly fewer, but not an insignificant number of gyms also have a coach on staff who isn't meeting the expectations of the owner or the other coaches.

How do you deal with these different, but similar, situations?

The easy thing to do is ignore it and hope it goes away on its own. Maybe the member quits or starts taking another class. Maybe the coach quits or (even more unlikely) shows up one day a changed person.

The more likely scenario: Nobody quits and nobody gets better. The only thing that happens is your community suffers.

The harder thing to do with that member or with that coach would be to sit down and have a tough conversation. But even that isn't enough.

Since that conversation will be fraught with conflict or drama, we need to first begin building up their emotional bank account. We need to first give and give and give, before we ever think about taking. We need to build a surplus before making a withdrawal -- because, to be sure, any conversation about how a person isn't meeting your expectations is going to be a withdrawal.

If you spend two weeks making deposits into their emotional bank account, making them feel like you truly have their best interest at heart, they'll be far more receptive to you when you have that conversation. 

They'll be less defensive and more open to your suggestions, which will lead to less drama, less conflict, and a better community inside the gym. 

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