Episode 160: Leadership Lessons With Chris Cooper

leadership

00:02                       Welcome everyone to TwoBrain Radio. It is our mission at TwoBrain to provide 1 million entrepreneurs the freedom to live the life that they choose to join us every week as we discover the very best practices to achieve perfect day and move you closer to wealth .

Greg Strauch:                        00:29                       on this episode. You guys get to hear, Chris Cooper talk about the top leadership lessons he learned in 2018 . He’s reflecting on the past year of 2018, withTwoBrain. We’ve been growing more than ever and he talks about the five leadership lessons that he’s learned throughout this process to make him more of an effective leader. Enjoy the episode.

Chris:                                         00:53                       Hey everyone. Chris Cooper here and really thrilled to see you this year in June in Chicago at the 2019 TwoBrain summit. Every year we have two separate speaking tracks: one for you, the business owner and there’s one for coaches that will help them make better, longer, more meaningful careers under the umbrella of your business. This year. We’ve got some pretty amazing topics like: the client success manager, how to change your life, organizational culture or the business owner’s life cycle, how to have breaks, how to have vacations, how to help your marriage survive. Owning a business and motivation and leadership. How to convert more clients, how to create a GM position that runs your gym for you and leaves you free to grow your business. How to start a business owner’s group in your community and more. The point here is to do the right thing that will help gym owners create better businesses that will last them for the long term, get them to tinker phase, help them be more successful, create meaningful careers of their coaches and give their clients a meaningful path to longterm health.

Chris:                                         01:54                       We only do one big seminar every year and that’s the TwoBrain summit and the reason that we do that is because a big part of the benefit is getting the TwoBrain community together and and welcoming strangers into our midst and showing them how amazing gym ownership really can be. We’ll have a link to the TwoBrain summit, including a full list of all speakers and topics on both the owners and the coaches side in the show notes. I really hope to see you there.

Chris:                                         02:17                       Hey guys, it is super exciting for me to be here today and I actually had a different topic planned. Um, but yesterday when I was out snowshoeing around in our back field, packing down trails and you know, trying to get my trails back after another three feet of snow. Um, I was listening to his new book that I really loved by John Maxwell called “Leadershift”, and I really wanted to share some of that stuff with you guys. And so I started thinking about like the last year for me and, um, the leadership lessons that I’ve had to learn. So we’ll get into that. Um, what I’d love to do is just give you a little bit of context on, um, like what I’ve been challenged with over the last, and if, you know, there’s some mentors listening, they’re well familiar with this, but what’s basically happened with TwoBrain, and you guys have seen this from the inside, is we went from 20 gyms three years ago to over 500 now. And that’s meant that the company has leveled up. You know, and that’s my, that I’ve had to level up my leadership skills. But stuff that I learned in the gym one-on-one has certainly been helpful, you know, as formed a basis for all this stuff. But it wasn’t enough.

Chris:                                         03:25                       And so most of you guys know that I have some, some big, well known mentors like Dan Martell. And now my mentor is Marcy Swenson and all we talk about for $1,400 an hour is leadership. And every call, what I do is I bring a certain scenario to her and we’ll walk through it. And I’m usually taking notes so quickly that I have like a script almost by the end. And these aren’t always things that I have to tell my staff. Sometimes it’s like, well how can I make this better for the client? Or how can we make sure that we improve this next time? That kind of thing. Um, so that has really been super valuable to me and I’ve been sharing a lot of that stuff with the mentors. But I want to share it with you guys, especially with so many of you reaching the tinker phase so quickly.

Chris:                                         04:12                       I’m really, really proud of that and I’m going to be talking more to you guys about leadership, but I think this is stuff that everybody can learn. So why now? Well, the main thing is that when I published the article “why your rules don’t work” this week, I started getting a lot of questions and I’m always surprised when I publish something that seems so obvious that so many people you know want to argue about it or like just don’t understand it. And I think I’m preaching to the choir here because most of you guys understand now like why you need roles and tasks and why you need a staff playbook. And why consistency is more important th
an everything else. Right? Like you guys get it, but not everybody does. And so when I write these articles, that feedback that I usually get is misunderstanding. And most of the time the problems that they’re having are not that they don’t have the rules.

Chris:                                         05:03                       It’s a problem of leadership. And I think what we’re actually building here are leaders. I think that one of the best reasons anybody can open a business or become an entrepreneur is to learn crazy valuable leadership lessons that they’ll carry the rest of their lives. Whether they open five more businesses, whether they take a business from, you know, me and Danny and Jay to crazy smart people around the world. Um, you know, these are, these are lessons that you’ll always have. And so I want to talk more about these leadership lessons too. So I’m not going to spend a million years introducing this. I just want you guys to know like why this is coming up so much right now. The other thing too is my new book is coming out in about four weeks: “Founder, farmer, tinker, thief.” And the book is really about filters.

Chris:                                         05:51                       So, you know, there’s so much out there right now about entrepreneurship and leadership and you know, popular speakers have made entrepreneurship and leadership cool. But there’s almost so much that it’s hard to know what to apply and when and it’s all well meaning, right? Like, you know, I just, I just listened to “can’t hurt me” by David Goggins and probably five of you told me that I needed to read this book and for the first two hours of listening to it, I was in trance. It was awesome. And this, the story is great, but now five hours in, I’m saying, is he going to say anything new? Like, do I have to finish this book to, can I move on to something else? And what I want to do for you guys is be that filter. And, none of us can read every single book that’s out there.

Chris:                                         06:35                       Not Anymore. None of us can take that stuff and filter it or distill it. And we all want to read more, but we don’t have time. And so what I want to do for you guys is like continue to take these best lessons and teach them to you in the context of gym Ownership. So thanks for letting me do that. The very first one that I want to go through with you guys is clarity. So whenever you run into a problem in the gym, if somebody doesn’t do what you expected them to, either good or bad or somebody didn’t live up to your expectations or somebody didn’t complete a task, the first thing that you have to ask yourself is did they know exactly what to do? Now, the reason that we address that so early in the incubator is because these mistakes get really, really, really expensive when you’re focused on growth for a couple reasons.

Chris:                                         07:24                       Number one, if you’re bringing new clients in, you know, you’re using to brand marketing and like, wow, 20 new people came through the door this month, but nobody’s emptying the garbages in, in your restroom. Then those, that mistake becomes super expensive because their first impression is not good. If, um, let’s say that you’re bringing 20 new people in and you don’t have reliable coaches who are going to greet these people and care for them and embrace them. And so you have to get sucked in to coach every class to make sure that these new people have the best experience. That has a very, very expensive mistake because you could be doing other things. You could be focused more on sales, marketing, whatever. Right? So the first thing I want you to have is I want you to have the understanding that if somebody doesn’t do what you want them to do, it’s very rarely out of spite.

Chris:                                         08:16                       It’s not because they’re trying to screw you. It’s not because they’re asserting their authority. You know, they’re not your teenager, the reason that they’re doing something wrong, it’s because they don’t know the right answer. And it’s our job to tell them the right answer. Just as we tell our clients, here’s how to squat, you have to show your staff, here is how you empty the wastebasket. You have to show them as many ways as it takes. And one of the questions that I got this week was like, when should we give up on a staff member if they’re not just, if they’re just not doing the job. And there are actually four steps that I go through. The first is I ask myself, how have I clearly told them what to do? Do they have like a written document or a video or something that shows them what perfect looks like?

Chris:                                         09:04                       The second thing is, have I given them context? Have I given them an emotional reason to succeed? So do they understand how a client’s day can be ruined if they get in the shower and the shower is filthy from the guy before them? The third thing I do is I ask, does the staff person understand the consequences of not doing a good job? You know, do they know why it’s important and do they do they know that I’ll fire them if they’re not doing a good job? And the fourth step is would this person be happier as a client? So when I’m, when I’m going through a situation where I’m not really sure why somebody is not doing, you know, the thing that I think they should be doing first, I assume that I haven’t told them clearly enough. Second, I assume that I haven’t given them a good enough reason to do it that way.

Chris:                                         09:52                       Third, I assume that they don’t understand the consequences and fourth, I move on. Okay. So in your gym, these look like writing down your mission, writing down your vision for success, recording what your values are and sharing them with your staff. It means having recorded standard operating procedures. It means regularly communicating all of those things. Even when you think, like Dave Henry said this morning, even when you think they get it, they know this what I’ve told them before, why aren’t they doing it? You have to revisit those standard operating procedures at least every year, you know, and that was a great post that he made. So you also have to ask yourself, what don’t I know? For example, if a client is routine or a staff person is routinely showing up late for, um, you know, to teach a class or whatever and you’ve been over them and they use it, they say, yeah, I know.

Chris:
                 10:44                       I know I have to get here before you take drastic action and cut them out of your life. You have to ask yourself, what don’t I know about their life? And this is a very important lesson taught to me by Josh Price, who is like our vision, mission, leadership guru who I turn to to all the time when I’m struggling with these things is first ask yourself, what don’t I know about the situation? And what this all leads to you guys have picked it up is you need to sit down with people regularly, talk to them, show them the way, okay?Show them your vision for their career. Show them the horizon, showed them the steps to get there. Make sure that they understand that they’re important to you, all right? And, uh, if they’re making mistakes, assume that they don’t know what to do. So the second thing that I’ve had to learn this year, um, through both lesson and by screwing this up a lot is communication.

Chris:                                         11:39                       So the first thing is clarity. The second is communication. And what I was taught when I went to San Francisco and visited Thumbtack was, this: as your company scales up (and Thumbtack went from like two employees to 20 to 200 to 2000. Really, really quickly,) what I learned there was that internal communication usually gets lost. So thumbtack was growing and these guys were eating up market share. They had a couple of big competitors that are producing a ton of media. But like why thumbtack, here’s how easy it is, here’s how reliable we are, here’s how strong our filters are. And um, the problem was that the founder wasn’t talking to his own staff. And so the rule he gave me was super powerful. He said, if you spend five hours a week talking to people outside your company, then you need to spend five hours a week talking to people inside your company.

Chris:                                         12:30                       If you realize as a CEO that like you have to repeat your message over and over on various media before everybody gets it. Then you have to realize that as a leader you have to do the same thing with your people. So at the time he was producing like a podcast to people about hiring and HR. He was writing emails everyday like you know, not as good as love letters that you guys, right, but you know, emails they were shooting, they’re doing a ton on youtube at the time, but none of that was actually staff facing. It was all potential client facings, all sales stuff. So what he did was he asked himself like, how can I run a podcast just for my staff? And what he does on the way to work now is he pulls out his phone, he records a two to three minute voice memo and he sends it to all of his staff.

Chris:                                         13:17                       Like all 2000 people are on one text thread with this guy. Then every time he writes like a promotional piece that go to future clients, he writes an internal piece, you know? And so what I started doing is writing a digest to the mentoring team every Friday. and, every time he did a live video for his clients, he would do a live video for his staff, like a Q and a or an open office hour. And you know, after I do this video, every Monday I go right into our mentors private Facebook group and do on there too. I learned that. But what I’ve also learned is that we have to hold our people just as accountable for communication as we’re holding ourselves. So that means we have to give them the tools to talk to one another. As you get bigger and you introduce a management layer into your business, like a GM, you need to show people a hierarchy.

Chris:                                         14:11                       And I know we’re all crossfit and we hate that stuff and that’s so corporate. Uh, but the bottom line is like if your people don’t know who to talk to, they’ll talk to the wrong people and they’ll share the wrong message. And usually that message is one of frustration and angst. And I don’t know what he’s doing. I don’t know what’s happening. Why is he making these choices? Okay? You need to give your staff very clear, uh, examples of like, here’s the communication pathway and if something’s not going right, here’s who you talk to. And then you need to make sure that you’re investing in those conversations. So if you don’t have time to do all those conversations yourself, as much as would love to, you have to make sure that they have a point of contact that they can go to with questions that they can go to with anxiety or I’m not sure how to make more money.

Chris:                                         15:01                       Okay, now it has a gym owner. Maybe that’s you. And you want to sit down with every code, all of your coaches, every single quarter. And you want to do the career roadmap for them. And you want to work backward from the career road map and say, here are the steps to getting there. And then you want to celebrate bright spots just like you do with your clients. But if you hire a GM, then you have to make sure that your GM is also doing those things because they can’t just stop. So Josh has a question before I go on to number three. The biggest thing I hear on calls with regards to this as the discipline piece, what is the appropriate discipline for these situations? And then the follow through. So the discipline is a tough one because you, you can’t really discipline somebody who’s not an employee, right?

Chris:                                         15:42                       I mean, all you can really do is remove them from your team. Now if there’s subcontractor that’s not too hard. Um, I don’t like confrontational interactions even though I’m getting a lot better at them. And that’s something that I practice all the time. But the bottom line is like, you have to ask yourself, what is the best thing for my client here? And so actually Joshy you know, one of the questions I got yesterday was I have a bad coach. I know there are a bad coach. I don’t want to coach the 6:00 AM class anymore. I’m going to have to, if I fire them. and, they referred like two other clients in the past. You guys know the story. The bottom line is your duty is to provide the best service for your best clients. And you know, hopefully that means the majority of your clients.

Chris:                                         16:31                       And so your duty i
s to not just put forth the best coaches, but also to remove the worst ones and to constantly be reading your garden, not just planting new seeds. So your primary duty is to remove that person. Now I think that your responsibility to that person is to ask them, do you understand what I expect of you? Okay, so you start with that first. You ask yourself, have I clearly told them? If you think that you have told them exactly what to do, then you ask them, have I clearly told you what my expectation is? Or do you understand exactly what I expect of you in this situation? And I think a lot of the time you’ll be surprised to find the answer is no. Now, if they’re doing bad behavior, no. If they’re sleeping with your members are stealing money, then the answer’s obvious.

Chris:                                         17:20                       Like you, you remove them right away. But if it’s just a coach who’s not quite getting it and he’s not, he’s not wearing shoes. We used to deal with that with boxes all the time. My coach shows up all the time and I can’t get him to put a shirt on. Huh. Um, then you go through the same steps. You know, what don’t they know? What have I not clearly explained to them? And, did I give them an emotional reason for succeeding? And, do they understand the consequence and you know, will I follow through on the consequence? So the consequences in my mind is not like written warnings. If you have employees though, you’re going to have to go through that process of like, am I going to write you up twice before I fire you so I don’t get sued? Okay. So the law will determine your responsibility there.

Chris:                                         18:04                       If it’s a subcontractor, I like to give them the opportunity to fire themselves and of Jamie’s watching, um, he actually just went through something like this, at catalyst not too long ago where he sat down with them. This coach had been canceling her Friday night classes all the time or trying to get other coaches and Jamie was just like jumping in and taking them a lot. And um, finally he sat down with her and said like, are you happy? You know, are you happy doing this? Because people, when it comes down to it, they don’t care about your gym. They don’t care about you that they care about themselves first. And that has, I didn’t mean that to sound as harsh as it probably did, but the bottom line is like, if they’re not happy, then the best thing you can do for them is to give them an easy way out.

Chris:                                         18:48                       That saves. There you go. So in this case, Jamie said, um, you know, would you be happier as a client? And she said, yeah. And she rejoined the 6:00 AM class. She’s been working out. Life’s just better. And when people say like, did you get fired? How come you’re off the schedule? She can hold her head high proudly and say, no, I just wanted to be a client again. So it doesn’t always work out that way. But the bottom line is like it has to get done. Okay. So if you have other questions, guys, feel free to just post them. The next thing, the next big lesson of leadership that I’ve had to learn this year is asking for help. And um, so everybody here, everybody on my team knows that I have mentors, I have mentors for different areas of life. I have tax mentors and financial CFO and Mike Lee Mentors me on process a lot.

Chris:                                         19:42                       Uh, but also have like external mentors like Marcy Swenson. And I’m glad to find this out because I would have had a mentor either way. But it’s really important for your staff to know that you are investing in yourself as a leader and in the platform that you’re providing for them. So for example, when you’re starting the incubator, you should tell your staff, I’m doing this thing because I want to create a better way for you to make more money, or I want to create a better career for you, or I want to be a better leader for you. Or if you’re Justin Keane, um, I’m going to be home more. I’m going to be a better dad. Okay? That’s still chokes me up. It’s really important that your staff sees this. The more direction you can give your staff, the more clarity surrounding your vision, your mission and your process.

Chris:                                         20:32                       And, the more excited that are going to get, or at least the less scared. What really drives staff away is the unknown. It’s, ah, this guy doesn’t have any vision and I don’t know where we’re going to start to look for visionaries, right? So you have to be really, really good at asking for help first from the outside. Second, you have to be really good at asking for help from the inside. So I want all of you to do one thing this week. I want you to go to a staff person and say, can you help me with this? Okay. A lot of us think that we have to be the expert, but we have to be the one providing the answer and that is dead wrong, okay? Most of the time when somebody brings us a problem, they don’t want us to solve the problem.

Chris:                                         21:17                       Now, that’s counterintuitive for a left brained guy. Like me, you know, if somebody’s complaining about something, I want to say, here’s how you fix it. But most of the time what they really want is just to be heard. And so you need to make them feel like what they’re saying is important to flip that script when you’re encountering something really challenging. One of the best things you can ever do for your staff is say, can I have your help with this? Now you don’t want to say, how would you solve this problem? Because if you go another way and you never take their advice, then you’re proving to them that what they think doesn’t have value. But if you say, can you help me with this? And you work collaboratively on solving a problem, even if you already know the answer, they’re going to think he asked me for help and nothing will make anyone feel as important as that.

Chris:                                         22:07                       So what I want you to remember from this chapter is people will never remember what you said to them. You know, if you blew up one time in anger and you said some stuff that you regret, don’t worry. I’ve done it a thousand times. What they will remember is how you made them feel. And um, if, if you can make them feel important, they’re far more likely to stay with, with you, you know? So don’t just solve people’s problems, listen to them, help them solve the problems, give them a little bit
of a lead rope to run with. Ask them how it went, and then finally ask them for help on the next thing too. All right, your people are smart. And one of the, one of the greatest experiences that I ever had was as a very young guy, um, I got a job that I was not qualified for and I went from wearing a Yogi bear costume for the summer to running most of a ski hill.

Chris:                                         23:08                       And this was a, you know, a multimillion dollar, a pretty large resort. I suddenly had 130 staff or I’ve never had a staff of more than like three before. Um, you know, we are responsible for $1 million in rental and lesson revenue every month. Right. I really wasn’t qualified for that. And when I went to the board meetings where the staff meetings, the owner of this resort was kind of this crazy guy, uh, who I still talk to, you know, 20 years later. And, um, this guy was famous for having these crazy tantrums and like he threw, you know, dry erase markers at me from across the room more than once. And, um, the second time I spoke up to him in a meeting and said, I don’t think that’s right. I think we’re losing money on this, you know, and I was only like 22. Um, somebody beside me was like, you gotta just shut up or else we’re going to be here all day.

Chris:                                         24:03                       And the owner, JJ, said, I’m not scared to work with powerful people. The reason that you’re all here is because you’ll speak up when I say the wrong thing. And you know, now that at TwoBrain, if you think of the team that surrounds me, these are brilliant entrepreneurs, successful entrepreneurs, and these guys have done things right that I haven’t even thought about, right? They’ve avoided mistakes that I stuck my foot in. You can’t be scared to work with brilliant people and working with brilliant people means listening to them, getting their help and letting them know when they’re brilliant, you know? Alright. Learn to ask for help more often. I mean, you guys all know my story right there. The gym was practically bankrupt. Like we couldn’t buy groceries until I finally asked for help. Nobody has done that worse than I have by all means.

Chris:                                         24:53                       All right, so the fourth tip is, uh, so the first one is clarity. The second is communication. The third is asked for help first. The fourth is dig deep to build a moat. All right? So the, the coolest new buzzword out there right now I think is build a moat, right? And I love talking to John Franklin. The guy is just so cool. I would never have been able to come within 10 lockers of this guy in high school. He’s so cool. And these are, this is like the phrase that he’ll use, oh. TwoBrain has this massive moat and what he’s really talking about is like trust, right? We, we’ve worked for a very long time to establish this foundation of trust. And when people sign up, it’s not because they saw an amazing ad, maybe that’s what led them to the phone, but, um, they’ve, they’ve seen this entire platform that thank goodness has helped them know, like, and trust us.

Chris:                                         25:44                       Okay? So what we want to do is build that relationship of knowing, liking and trusting with our staff. And um, years ago I had a personal training client named John and John had a single kid, a daughter, Allie, that he was super proud of. And John would come see me every Friday and one Friday he invited me to her wedding. Now I had never even barely met his family before, right. And I felt kind of weird. Like, dude, I’m your personal trainer. You, you’re inviting me to her wedding. And he said, you know, I’ve been training with you for six years. You probably know more about, her then her husband does because we talk about her all the time. And when I found crossfit, one of the things that attracted me to Greg was when he was talking about our relationship with our clients and how deep that gets and how we can get in there.

Chris:                                         26:33                       He said more than their therapist, you know more than their spouse, sometimes it, how many people on the call right now have been told about a pregnancy before anybody else. Right? The client comes in, I need to talk to you for a second, I’m pregnant. And you’re like, you know, you’re all excited and you’re in the secret with them and, and you’re trying not to show because they haven’t told the world yet. And like, you know, before her mom knows and maybe before her husband knows whatever, right? You guys have all had that experience before. You’re the first one to know that is crazy and we get that and we should have that with our staff too. So it’s really crazy important here that you understand first, what is your staff hoping to get? Okay. So “what do you want now?” Is the title of the seminar I used to teach back when we did seminars.

Chris:                                         27:24                       That is the most important question in entrepreneurship. What do you want now? So every three months when you sit with your staff person, I want you to say, what do you want now? Because they often change when I get on the phone with affiliates that I’ve never met before and always asked this question, who’s helping you? And they’ll name off their staff and I’ll say, would any of those people like to make a full time career? And you guys know what’s going to happen, right? We’re going to start personal training or we’re going to start marketing. And there’s these opportunities will exist where they didn’t before. And they’ll say, oh, I don’t think so. I don’t know. Maybe, maybe Jimmy. They don’t even know what their staff want. So every quarter you have to sit down with your staff and start with what do you want.

Chris:                                         28:13                       Now the next question you have to ask them is why do you want that? And people change over time. You know, we can assume that somebody wants to, same thing they did six months ago, but what doesn’t change is people’s values and motivation in life. And so if somebody says to you, I really need a salary right now, it might not be because they’re just trying to make more money. It could be because they’re trying to buy a house or maybe, you know, in one case in my gym, uh, he had a little baby, she was one year old and in Canada after a year, um, the mum goes back to work and his wife was getting close to that point. And I’ve been there and it’s horrible. I can’t imagine how you
ladies do it in the states, you know, after six or eight weeks.

Chris:                                         29:03                       But anyway, um, so he said, I need a raise. And if I hadn’t probe deeper, if I hadn’t dug in, I would never have built the moat that wound up surrounding me with that guy. And this guy and I traveled together for years. You know, we stayed in hotel rooms and talked about ignite and cognitive training and all kinds of stuff. Um, and we still have a good friendship specifically because, um, you know, I, I knew what his motivations were and I would never have guessed them. Dig deep to build a moat after you know their why, then you have a sticky relationship with them. And from there it’s your job to say, here’s how we’re going to get you there. All right, so we’re going to take out our, um, how to make a career in coaching the career-o-matic is Brian and I like to call it, and you’re going to say, okay, here are your goals.

Chris:                                         29:57                       You’re going to have a baby this year and you need a new car. And that means you need to make $50,000. Here’s how we’re going to do. And you’re going to pull out your little spreadsheet that I made. So it’s rudimentary. It’s not pretty like Anastasia spreadsheets. And you’re going to say $50,000 on the top line. And then you’re going to say personal training. I think we could get you five clients a week. So here’s what you’re going to earn from that $250. And I can give you four classes a week that you’re not already doing. And the kids program, you know, if you, if you talk to Gretchen, we can get that thing going. And here’s what I forecast we can do nowhere else in their life are the, is somebody taking the time to say, here is how I’m going to help you achieve your goals.

Chris:                                         30:43                       It’s true of your clients. And you guys hear me rave about this all the time in the incubator, but it’s also true of your staff and it’s also true of you. And that’s why your mentor does that exercise with you in December or January. First we go through your emotional reasons to succeed and then we break down the steps to get there and then we give you metrics that you have to hit to get there. You need to do those same things with your staff. All right? The next piece is, um, the tools that you give to your staff to help them know when they’re being successful. So digging this mode means also telling them you did that, right? Okay? So I want you to establish like what the KPIs are in your business and which ones you’ll share with your staff. For example, you might decide that your KPIs are arm, leg profit, gross revenue and number of clients.

Chris:                                         31:36                       Okay, I’ll give you that one. Which one of those do you want to share with your staff? Well, ARM we can share no problem. LEG, we can share. No problem. Number of members, we have no problem. Do you want to share your total revenue? It’s up to you. It depends on the staff, right? And then you want to tell the staff, here’s how you can influence these numbers. So if the staff’s career-o-matic says that they have, they’re going to take five personal training clients a week, then you’re going to say, here’s my plan to get you there. I work with [TwoBrain] and my mentor and I have this goal to hit 10 personal training clients by March. Here’s our plan. What else do you want to know? All right. Give them some confidence in your leadership and then say, here’s how we know if we’re being successful.

Chris:                                         32:17                       So, um, my friend nick who owns the tire store, nick, I don’t know if you’re on here. Um, he’s got a whiteboard. You know, at the end of the day he can wipe out that big 80 and he can write 76 if they did for jobs that day. And the staff see that and they know like, wow, we’re making progress here. You know, the science of motivation really boils down to this. It’s hard, but you can do it and then proving it. So if we show people like you’re being successful, success precedes motivation, they’re more likely to want to do it, okay? And so it keeps them engaged. So the four rules here are clarity, communication, ask for help. First, dig deep to build a moat. And finally the only two words that really, really matter, but of all the hundreds of leadership books, seminars, ted talks, whatever, there’s really only two words that matter and they are following.

Chris:                                         33:12                       You have to set the footsteps in place for your clients to follow or for your staff to follow. You have to be the leader. Now that can’t mean that you disengage your team. And you run on up ahead and you climb the cliff face and then you turn around and say, hey guys, the view up here is amazing. If you can figure out how to join me, come up. He can’t do that. What you have to do is stay a step or two ahead of your staff and no more. It’s important that they see you leading from the front so they have footsteps to follow because we learn our behavior through modeling. You know, it’s one thing to tell people what to do, it’s quite another to exemplify that behavior. But if they can’t see you because you’re so far ahead, if you haven’t communicated what you’re doing or what the sales staff is doing or how much personal training you’re doing, they will lose sight of you.

Chris:                                         34:11                       And if you’re not turning around now and then and saying, here’s the map guys, remember, here’s the vision, here’s our goal, here’s our mission. They will lose sight of those things. And so you need to be communicating those things to them as often as you’re communicating to your clients and your other, your non-clients through media. You know, think about the time that you spent posting to Instagram today. Time yourself as longer than you think it’s, it’s 11 or 12 minutes for every post. Have you spent 11 or 12 minutes communicating your vision to your staff today? I doubt it. I haven’t, right? So I need to do that. We all need to do that and I’m going to dedicate myself to doing that because I know it’s my responsibility to put those tracks in place. All right? So there’s a couple of things that you need to focus on when it comes to follow me.

Chris:                                         35:05                       The first one is you’re not above any work, so it might not be your job to empty the garbage is anymore. Okay? It might not be your problem. It might not be responsibility, maybe somebody else’s even being paid to do it. But if you walk back and if you walk past an overfilled trashcan and they’re watching, then you need to do it because it’s your job to show them that it’s not acceptable to walk past and overflowing trashcan. Likewise, if you’re paying somebody to do the programming and you don’t have the programming and time for the morning class, or if there’s a problem, then you need to say to them, here’s the problem. Let’s walk through this together. Give them an opportunity to fix it. But no, you know how to fix it yourself and guide them that way. I’ll tell, I’ll tell you guys, if there’s somebody on this call and they’re saying, man, I need to get better at that, then you’re doing it right.

Chris:                                         35:58                       You should always be questioning yourself as a leader. You should be questioning your motives. You should be questioning your momentum. Am I making enough progress? You should be questioning, you know, the, the, um, the leadership persona that your team sees. Am I showing these people how to be what I want them to be? You should question your ability to share your, their horizon with them so that they understand what you want for them in life. You know, it’s funny, um, I won’t share which meant or this was, but when I finally explained to this person, like, you’re working too much. I want to give you this thing to help you. It wasn’t a shock to me, but it was to her and, and she was really moved by it. So it’s important, not only that you’re sharing like, here’s what you’re doing right, here’s what you’re doing wrong, but also here’s how I’m helping you.

Chris:                                         36:48                       Okay? The only two words that matter when it comes to leadership are follow me. Okay? I said that I want you to live your vision. I want you to be flexible in your methods, but unimpeachable and your beliefs and to also know as Babe Ruth said, that you can’t win the day when the game on yesterday’s home runs. Okay? Eventually as a leader, Opportunity becomes responsibility. And this is something that’s hit me really, really hard the last couple of months is, you know, we built this big mode and after we hit 500 gyms and we started getting approached by, you know, the, the software companies and software developers and like equipment companies and we want to pitch this thing to you. And at first I looked at those things as opportunities and then I looked at them differently and I said that if we’re going to lead us being the 500, then it’s our responsibility to make these people live up to our standard.

Chris:                                         37:46                       You know, it’s, it’s not just enough for us to go begging wodify to tell us the metrics that we need anymore. We, US 500, the few and the powerful, the tip of the spear need to say, if you want to work with us and do this, that rings true of many areas of our business. We need to hold everybody to a higher standard. You need to be looking at your expense sheet every single month and asking, am I receiving good value from this? Um, and you need to say, you know, what can I do to bring all the people up around me? You know, if you’ve got a popular gym and another gym down the street is closing at first, that may seem like a great opportunity to get their members. But if you’re a leader, you’re going to understand that it’s really your responsibility to try and help them if you can.

Chris:                                         38:33                       All right, my last piece of advice, I didn’t want to give this one a number. Uh, I came last year and so Robin and I sponsor some hockey teams and we go way out of our way to give these kids like an amazing experience. And we pay for hotel rooms and sometimes we have to like deliver food to the families. And you know, we dressed the kids up and everything, right? Um, and we’re, we’re thrilled to do it. We don’t want anything in return. That’s not why we’re there, but sometimes the parents complain anyway. And one of these mornings I was feeling really frustrated and I walked into the workshop and Mary who was running the cafe, rolled her eyes and said, Chris, never forget that some of the people, we do this for our assholes. And so on the days when it feels like, man, I, I’ve gone over and above, I can’t go.

Chris:                                         39:20                       I can’t do this anymore. Don’t stop. Just remember that not everyone is good at showing gratitude. Not everybody appreciates why you’re giving them. And some of them are assholes. All right? So if there are any more questions, by all means, please ask them here. Um, what I want you to remember is that mentorship is not a friendship. Friendship brings encouragement. Mentorship brings empowerments and I got that from my new favorite book leader shifts by John Maxwell. All right? Okay. So Nick, for me it’s definitely sharing my vision with them. That’s a problem. I haven’t submitted a way to keep that vision in front of them. Dude, you’re preaching to the choir here. Okay. Um, I am very blessed to have guys like Josh Price and Jeff Smith with a military background on the team because they will call me up and say, what’s your vision again? What’s our mission here?

Chris:                                         40:13                       Why are we doing it like this? Okay, they are, these are powerful people that I am not scared to work with. Now if you ran into these guys in a dark alley, you’d be scared of them right there. They’re big, smart, powerful dudes. But the bottom line is like, um, these guys are constantly asking me and that reminds me to tell the whole team. So here’s what I do first, we have a team digest that goes out every Friday. So I sent an email just to people on the team, here’s what’s happening with this thing. Here’s what we’re doing about it. Okay. And about every third month or so, or I’m sorry, every third email or so, I’ll remind them, here’s how this fits our mission. You know, to serve 1 million entrepreneurs, to get a million entrepreneurs to wealth. And so the questions that I get back are not like, why are we doing this?

Chris:                                         41:00                       But how will this help us fulfill our mission? And they’r
e always good questions, right? Because they’re always qualified by that. The second thing is you need to repeat that message over and over and over because even though people are reading it, maybe like you and I, you know, they don’t learn by reading, right? So maybe you have to do like a podcast for your staff. Imagine that. Or maybe you have to do like a video message to your staff every single morning. Right. One of the reasons that we started doing this Facebook live and one at every, you know, every day at 2:00 PM is so that we talk about these concepts in an informal way with you and you could ask questions in real time, even though, you know, we do the modules and we do the mentoring and stuff. Sometimes you know, you, you just need to hear it a different way.

Chris:                                         41:46                       And John Gilson, Tommy this, you know, you can be working with a client on their muscle up for two years. You can be doing personal training with them. They can be doing it in class and they’re just not getting that transition. And they, you know, they can do that. 100 ring dips and they can do that. 100 ring pull ups, but they just can’t pull their elbows back. And then one day of visiting coach walks in the door and he says, Oh yeah, Tuck your chin. And the client talks to his chin and they get a muscle up. Well, it doesn’t mean that that other coach was better than you, it’s just that he had words that the client heard instead of your words. People hear things differently. So what I’d like you to do is write down your vision and then I want you to think of two ways you’re going to communicate that to your staff.

Chris:                                         42:29                       Maybe you’re going to do a Facebook live like this and your private coaches group. Maybe you’re going to do an email digest like I do. You know, maybe you’ve got a private slack channel with them. Um, maybe you’ve got something else. Maybe you’re doing a podcast for your staff. Maybe you’re copying thumbtack strategy of like a mini podcast. So I want you to be leaders in your own community. I want you to be leaders in the broader community of gym owners in the movement. I also want you to be leaders in this group, so thanks for participating, asking tough questions and listening.

Speaker 3:                               43:01                       As always, thank you so much for listening to this podcast. We greatly appreciate you and everyone that has subscribed to us. If you haven’t done that, please make sure you do drop a light to that episode. Share with a friend, and if you haven’t already, please write us a review and rate us on how what you think. If you hated it, let us know if you loved it, even better. See you guys later.

Thanks for listening!

On Monday, Two-Brain Radio presents marketing tips and success stories. Chris Cooper delivers the best of the business world on Two-Brain Radio every Thursday. 

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