Are you annoying some of your current (or potential) participants? You know, rubbing those folks who are of a different/opposite personality type than yours the wrong way?

I recently came to the conclusions that there's a good chance that I do at times - please let me know if any of this makes sense to you...

Yesterday I gave a presentation to our sold-out group of studio owners and Instructors at the Full Psycle/PRO PIQ workshop entitled:

Selling Power - The success of your studio depends on it!

We've got all of this fancy technology in our studios; bikes with consoles, display training systems, results emails and online user profiles that record all of your previous class data. So (to me) it should follow that persuading (Selling) participants that Training with Power is worthwhile becomes supercritical to building a loyal following = a profitable fitness business.

The core concept of my talk was how you need to understand how the four different personality types; Director, Socializer, Relater and Thinker need to be "Sold" to differently.

Slide5The personality matrix is constructed like this:[wlm_private 'PRO-Platinum|PRO-Monthly|PRO-Gratis|PRO-Seasonal|Platinum-trial|Monthly-trial|PRO-Military|30-Days-of-PRO|90 Day PRO|Stages-Instructor|Schwinn-Instructor|Instructor-Bonus|28 Day Challenge']


Then I went on to describe the common personality traits of each type.


Teach an early AM class? I'll bet it's filled with "A" type Directors.


I am a Director > my kids will attest to me sometimes being a bit harsh 🙁


These social folks will pay your overhead if you can attract and retain them.


I explained how it was my belief that attracting Socializers is the key to a successful/profitable Indoor Cycling Studio. Everything I observed at SoulCycle appeared to be designed to attract this type of people and who can argue with their success?


You're a Relater if you include the word "safe" in your class description.

When we first began promoting Performance IQ there was some initial pushback from Instructors; "we need to keep competition out of our classes!" > which I realize now came from Relaters who were concerned about weaker riders not being able to keep up. NOTE: that's been fix... now you can run PIQ competitions between riders that are handicapped for weight/gender or Team based challenges are awesome for including everyone.


Thinkers spend a lot of time discussing the "Science" of training with anyone who will listen.


At the risk of sounding harsh (I'm a Director... we do stuff like that!)...

I feel we are wasting our time, when we focus our attention on Thinkers.

Many (maybe most) dedicated endurance athletes/cyclists fall into the Thinker group. Don't get me wrong - I know hundreds of them and they're a bunch of nice people. If I had a technical product or service to sell I would devote nearly all of my attention on these data junkies. But Thinkers are very individualistic* (loners) ≠ the type of people who add value to a group fitness class. Not to mention they disappear from your class on the first nice spring day.

While typing this I remembered an article from Stages Indoor Cycling's Cameron Chinatti about not focusing on the Squeaky Wheels in your classes. Cameron doesn't call out Thinkers directly, but I see it all the time where Instructors get sucked into esoteric debates about the science of training on Facebook or with the guy in a full kit, who sat in the front row, doing his own thing.

Little, if any, of the "science" of training is of interest to Socializers. So while you're caught up with the wannabe pro cyclist/Thinker, debating the pro's and con's of Training Zone 5B > the Socializer (who has many hundreds of friends) who wanted to thank you for recognizing them during class, leaves feeling like you don't really care... and never comes back.

So Who annoys Who?


I got a lot of heads nodding "YES" when we discussed who annoys who during my presentation.


All of this is strictly anecdotal > just my 53 years of observation and my own personal feelings.

  • Thinkers and Socialisers can get under each other's skin.
  • As a Director, Relaters can bug the crap out of me and they see me a uncaring 🙁

We discussed a number of examples of how we need first need to identify our "type" and then be careful not to annoy our opposites, during the presentation of our classes.

  • Directors need to recognise a Relater's concerns for the safety of others - even if we think it's unfounded.
  • Relaters need to understand that not everyone shares their concerns and encourage the Directors in class to take a risk.
  • Thinkers need to minimize the "science lessons" or they'll quickly lose Socializers.
  • Socializers - it can't be all passion and cheerleading. Throw your Thinkers a few technical "bones" to satiate their need for concrete data.

[/wlm_private]I'm kicking myself for not recording this complete session. There was a lot of excellent comments and feedback. We're planning more of these Full Psycle/PRO workshops and I won't make the same mistake twice.

*Yes, cyclists go on group rides, with other cyclists. But these rides are rarely social events - especially for men. More like a group of individuals riding near each other, all going in the same direction and using each other's draft.

Originally posted 2015-02-15 10:38:00.


Add Your Thoughts...