I’ve cut my teeth in hospitality, I’ve dabbled in retail and I’ve spoken at length to people from a range of other industries and I maintain that working in the fitness industry provides experience and education beyond that of any other industry.
Sure, it’s a big call, but I’m going to go even further. Not only does the fitness industry expose professionals to a range of skills that are highly valued in other industries, it’s exposing professionals to working conditions that represent the future for professionals across all industries.
But let’s start with experience and education…
No matter what you do or where you’re heading, the ability to sell is an advantage. And the Fitness Industry provides one of the greatest proving grounds for sales available.
Every role (Front Desk, Group Ex, PT, etc.) is exposed to the sales process.
And not just any sort of sales, this is service sales. The hardest type of sale. After all, you can’t let someone hold their fitness experience in their hand. You can describe the journey. You can let them feel the equipment. But it’s only a part of what the service involves. And let’s not forget that, for the greater population, doing physical activity is not that enjoyable (to begin with). We’re selling something that is (a) considered discretionary spending and (b) known to cause discomfort!
If you can successfully pitch fitness to clients, in whatever part you play, you’ll be a star recruit in any other role.
The fitness industry is about making people feel good.
Again, no matter what role you have in the fitness industry, you’ll be connecting with a range of people on a daily basis. For the majority of roles, all this connection is face to face. No hiding behind phones, counters, stock, whatever. You’ll be addressing the needs of clients from the simple to the obscure, from the extremely personal to public.
Even if you decided to get into an industry where customer service has no relevance (boring!), you’re bound to ace the interview. Just because you’re such an engaging guy/girl.
The value of metrics
All leading clubs and studios have a close eye on all metrics. That is, the numbers that have an impact on the bottom line – Inbound enquiries, Tours, Training sessions, Membership base, Client Retention, Sales, Attrition, Class numbers, etc.
While many other industries restrict this information to managers, I’ve seen and worked with clubs where these figures were routinely included in the KPIs for staff at all levels.
Familiarity with the value of these numbers puts any professional at an advantage when determining what impact they might have on the bottom line of any business – great for clarifying your value to any new team.
A professional registration program
There is a HUGE emphasis on ongoing development in the Fitness Industry. If you’ve maintained your industry registration, pat yourself on the back. It’s a great addition to your CV.
And the best bit, many skills are transferable (that is, not just fitness specific) and even those that aren’t still give weight to your commitment to grow as an individual.
The working landscape is changing and fitness is at the forefront
At this point I’d like to give special mention to Personal Trainers and Freelance Instructors (whoop! whoop!).
These roles represent the future of employment – more specifically, personal branding.
Across all industries, businesses are shifting towards a ‘staff on demand’ approach – it’s the only way to stay competitive in a rapidly changing market place. As a result, your ability to market your skills and operate with confidence as an independent contractor is going to become paramount.
So there you have it. Your work in the Fitness Industry provides much more than a wage, more than great teams and more than the ability to change lives. Your work in the Fitness Industry is helping shape you into a genuine leader among professionals in any indsutry.