Bigger Commitment

The more an employee feels that she has influence over the company’s values, the bigger commitment she’ll make to the company.

Chip Conley, Rebel Rules

If you want a coach to take greater ownership of her role in your gym, make her feel like an owner. You can do this without giving her actual equity by merely giving her a seat at the table when you make decisions.

Teach her to think like an owner, to differentiate the good ideas from the right ideas, to understand the value of reinvestment & your tolerance for risk. Sit with her & talk about the values at the heart of your gym. If you’ve never identified your core brand values, do that together.

Give her enough space to make mistakes, then talk about them. Tell her about all the mistakes you’ve made & what you learned from them.

We often want people to be more proactive & to take more ownership, but we forget that school teaches very few people how to do that. We forget that most of us are taught to be obedient & to wait until the teacher calls on us before we speak up.

We forget that that was us before we found ourselves in a position requiring we learn how to think differently - how to think, in fact, as an owner.

Patrick Cummings
Think Like a Prospect Thinks

[Ego] can be an effective driving force in building a business. What hurts is injecting your ego in the marketing process. Brilliant marketers have the ability to think like a prospect thinks. They put themselves in the shoes of their customers. They don’t impose their own view of the world on the situation.

Jack Trout & Al Ries, The 22 Immutable Laws of Marketing

I admire the aspiration of wanting to give your members "the best hour of their day" - of striving to do what you do so well that you upstage everything else.

But from a marketing perspective, it's misguided. It places what you want above what they want.

After all, it's fair to assume that most of your members want the best hour of their day to be time spent with family around a healthy dinner, or volunteering at the local food bank, or leading their team through a thorny problem at work.

These are the kinds of things the folks walking through your doors next month & next year will certainly want. They'll want to become better humans, not better CrossFitters.

To get their attention & earn their trust, you need to learn how to position your gym as a conduit, not a destination.

Perhaps a better aspiration would be wanting to give your members an hour that elevates the other twenty-three. Maybe you should be aiming to do what you do so well that you help them find the energy to show up in the world, the confidence to do difficult things, & the knowledge they need to make better decisions.

Less catchy, sure. But more empathetic & therefore more useful.

Patrick Cummings
Decreased Input

Increased output necessitates decreased input.

Tim Ferriss, The 4-Hour Workweek

The paradox of the Internet is that - from one moment to the next - it is either an incredible force multiplier for our aspirations or an outsized drain on our potential. It is either a catapult or a two hundred pound weight vest.

Important to remember that we are entirely in control of whether it becomes the former or the latter. Here are three questions to ask yourself in pursuit of better getting at the nutrients of this unwieldy beast:

  1. Why am I using this app, reading this site, or getting this email? 
    Intention is the mother of all progress. When you relinquish the power acting with intention affords us, you too quickly grab for the empty calories of distraction. Occasional distraction is okay, as long as it’s on purpose. More often than not, though, it’d be a lot better to just take a few deep breaths & get back to work. 

  2. Who’s schedule am I on? 
    If you don’t take control of your time, other people happily will. Check Reddit, watch the news, & dive into your email, but do it when it’s advantageous to you, not them. Creating a daily schedule for yourself is the single most effective prophylactic against a surge of the unnecessary & nonessential.

  3. Is someone else a better filter than I am?
    The Internet is a minefield of rabbit-holes. Let other people do the diving, the filtering, & the distillation. Find a few sources you trust on a subject you care about & let them go deep on it. Pay attention to what they’re learning & teaching. Ask them questions, take their courses, & read their books. Happily ignore everybody else.

The Internet is a beautiful place, but it’s a terrible babysitter. Recognize that you’re the one in charge of what’s in your feed & on your phone, & that passivity is a pretty terrible strategy.

Patrick Cummings