No industry experience? No problem.
The trick is to know what the employer wants to hear.
In fact, even if you have experience, it’s not uncommon to completely miss the mark with your application by failing to talk in a language the employer understands.
It’s easy to think that, because it’s all fitness industry, that all jobs are created equal. Unfortunately, this leads to generic applications and an expectation that employers will draw the connection between previous experience and the available role.
And no matter how well you think a previous role prepared you for the job you’re applying for, if you haven’t specifically addressed key criteria (whether or not it’s included in the ad), you’re sunk. Employers are not in a position to determine how a role in Retail Management, for example, translates to PT Management. What they want is clear examples of how your previous experience will translate to success in the current role.
To help you stay on topic, following is a selection of key industry job categories and a corresponding list of skills/traits that you should focus on to give each application the chance it deserves…
PLEASE NOTE: While the following provides the direction – please read all ads thoroughly to determine individual criteria required.
PERSONAL TRAINING application check list
Attributes; Personable nature, outgoing, empathy, commitment to ongoing learning, walking the walk.
Skills; If no professional experience, refer to personal experience in strength training, bootcamps, etc.
Qualifications; Min Cert IV. Employers will often consider those currently completing Cert IV.
Bonus Skills: Sales experience – can be learned but essential for a successful Training career.
SALES CONSULTANT application check list
Attributes; Target driven, competitive, extrovert, passion for fitness and changing lives, willingness to learn.
Skills; Any sales experience (esp. service sales) is VALUABLE. Highlight it!
Qualifications; Not required. Avoid distraction, focus on your skills and experience.
RECEPTION / ADMIN application check list
Attributes; Effervescent personality, empathy, outgoing, punctuality, attention to detail, well presented.
Skills; Problem solving skills, computer skills, written/verbal communication skills.
Qualifications; Not required. Focus on your skills and experience.
Bonus Skills: Sales experience – after all, the sales process starts at the front desk.
PERSONAL TRAINING MANAGER application check list
Attributes; Highly motivated, attention to detail, ability to work well under pressure, experienced Personal Trainer.
Skills; Leadership, conflict resolution, motivational skills, sales training skills, industry and job knowledge.
Qualifications; Minimum Cert IV in Fitness.
CLUB MANAGER application check list
Attributes; Highly motivated, attention to detail, ability to work well under pressure, experienced in fitness sales.
Skills; SALES (first and foremost), leadership, conflict resolution, motivational skills, sales training skills, industry and job knowledge.
Qualifications; Not always required – the normal progression into this role is via sales and sales management.
Whatever job you’re applying for, stay on topic, no more than three paragraphs on the cover letter and no more than two pages for the CV.
Have I left anything out of the above lists? If you have any suggestions, send them through or comment below.