A couple of months ago I had a consulting client in to CSP for an in-person consultation. We scheduled the sit-down to take place during the hour before clients arrives so that he could transition from my office to the training floor as we were kicking off what was expected to be a busy mid-winter day. The insight I share relating to training environment and gym culture is effectively hammered home once you can "see it in action."
We weren't ten steps in to the gym when a football came flying past our faces and into the hands of a sprinting Greg Robins. A half-dozen professional baseball players stood just twenty yards away, nodding their heads in approval as Greg had "run the proper route."
The visiting gym owner proclaimed: "He must be mortified that you walked through the door at that exact moment and caught him messing around."
He wasn't. As a matter of fact, he proceeded to run an even cleaner route moments later right in front of me. Greg (and every other member of my coaching staff) knows that I appreciate the importance of relating to our clients and demonstrating that we don't take ourselves too seriously while on the training floor.
If our guys want to sling a football around for ten minutes prior to kicking off a training session, I am all for it. We place an emphasis on professionalism around here, but not entirely at the expense of delivering an enjoyable work and training environment. Seth Godin put it best when he described Coldstone Creamery's customer service model in All Marketers Tell Stories:
"If the scoopers aren't having a good time, why should the customers?"