19 Aug Consultation Series: Impromptu Consultation
Before getting into the outlines for the sit down consultations in your facility, I would like to cover one of the consultations that will happen often but few are ever ready for: the birthday party; the cookout; the wedding. Any event that brings a group of people together to enjoy food and fellowship can turn into a consultation. I like to call this the “Impromptu Consultation.”
When you are in a situation like this and people find out you are a personal trainer, they will instantly start firing questions your way. Now this is a crucial time; if you are not prepared, you will have a long conversation about things that are not leading them anywhere. They think that you will have the magic workout for them, meanwhile they are downing a burger and chips, chasing it with the beer that is being served at the event. This is the time for you to start directing the conversation. A piece of advice before I go on: This is NOT your time to make them feel horrible for eating the food that they are at this exact time, do not belittle them. Encourage them.
Ok now on to the impromptu consultation. Get permission to ask them 4 health questions to help you design the right program for them. This is called permission marketing and gets them already saying the word yes to you. Before you get into the questions, I would like to remind you that this is their time to talk, not yours. It should be them talking 70% of the time and you 30%. Ok, let’s get started on your impromptu consultation.
Question 1: “What are your health goals?”
You are trying to get them to share 3 goals that they would like to achieve in the area of health and wellness. This is not the time for you to start teaching them how to accomplish said goals, or even the steps to take to achieve their goals. Just listen. This process may take a while with some as most people really don’t even know what they want. Ask them to paint you a picture with words of what they mean. Get them to actually picture in their mind what it is that they want. The more detailed that they can be, the better chance they have of getting there. During this time, remember to let them talk 70% and you 30%. You may not even get to the next question before someone else comes into the conversation, but you will have them thinking. Then, when they are at home getting ready for bed, your conversation will start to replay in their head and who knows you just may get a call later that week. Also, because you have mastered the chapter on marketing, you know that you have his or her number and you can follow up with them to see if they would like to come in and go over the other three questions. It is all about the follow-up. Ok, enough of that one. Now let’s say that they have given you 3 goals and you understand what they are looking to achieve. It’s time to move onto the next question.
Question 2: “How is your nutrition?”
Nutrition can be extremely overwhelming, but it doesn’t have to be. All you are looking for at this time is what they are actually doing. Remember, this is not the time to “tell” them what to do. This is your time to listen. You will soon find out if they are eating a breakfast when they wake up. You will see if they eat a lunch and what their dinner looks like. Most people will say they eat fairly healthy and then proceed to tell you what they “usually” eat, as they are now finishing off a huge piece of cake that the people at the party “made” them eat. When they are finished with telling you their food and what they eat, ask them to tell you what they ate yesterday. It is pretty eye opening to both yourself and them when they actually go over what they consumed. They are looking for you to tell them they are doing a good job, or looking for you to fix the problem right there. Your answer maybe something like this, “Well, I see where we can make some changes, but it would be unprofessional of me to go into that right now. When is a good time for us to meet up?” You are just getting information and setting the appointment for your sit down consultation. Now, on to the next question.
Question 3: “Any medical issues we should be aware of?”
People love to tell you what’s wrong with them, so beware once you ask this one. Knowing that you are not a Doctor (unless you actually are), you should not and cannot make any medical claims on what you can do for them. What you may see here is that most people start out on 1 or 2 medications but soon will be up to about 6-8 because of the side affects from the ones they took to “cure” them of the first symptom they were having. You will soon see how many people are medicating their symptoms instead of fixing the actual issue. Main thing here is you are just peeling back more of the onion on their life. This is revealing the problem, and you are going to give them the solution. Now, on to the next question, and you’re going to love this one.
Question 4: “Now that we are friends, are you regular using the restroom?”
This may get you some funny looks and probably a laugh or two, but this is truly no laughing matter. There are too many people out there that this is a real issue for. Imagine how much food you consume in three days. If you are not moving that through your system, and it is sitting inside you at 98.6 degrees, it’s a toxic mess. The saying goes, “it’s better out of you than in you.” Trust me: Most people will not ask this question, but it just may be the missing link to this person’s health, so talk about it.
With getting these four questions down and letting them role out in a casual conversation, you will learn to be a professional question asker which is key to this business. When was the last time someone asked questions about you and actually wanted to hear the answers? It is rare, and I understand that, which is a big reason why you will be different from all the other “trainers” out there. You will be a true Personal Trainer. This is an amazing way to get people to open up to you, and even if they do not train with you at this time they will always remember you. The next time they are at an event and the topic of losing weight comes up, your name will pop up for sure, and who knows you just may get a referral call out of it.
Homework for this week:
Practice these 4 questions and watch what happens. You just may get a client while doing your homework.
Also, if you have other friends that are in the fitness industry, feel free to share this with them as we will continue to dive into the subject. There just might be something in this series that will take the lid off their current thinking and help them get to the next level.
Making a Difference