Hiring Star Power

I just read an article on the Club Industry site, Should Your Fitness Studio Be Dependent on Personalities or Programs?, and thought that it is an issue worth discussing. Who should we be seeking out as new employees? Should it be a local “star” or an unknown?Star trainer

Let’s check out some pros and cons of hiring a star.

Pros:

  1. They are a known entity. They have a proven track record of success.
  2. They may bring in their own clients from another facility (which means more revenue for your facility).
  3. Their fans (clients/members) will tell others how good they are and help build their classes or programs (more revenue).
  4.  They may bring a special talent or skill that you do not yet have at your facility (potentially more revenue).

Cons:

  1. I’ve seen trainer and instructor rock stars from one facility completely flop in another setting. Their star power may not transfer.
  2. If they brought their client’s with them to your facility, what’s to say they won’t turn around and take them out of your facility along some of your regulars?
  3. They may expect higher pay than others which, if you pay it, can create bad team feelings if others were to ever find out.
  4. They may feel that they are above the standard policies and procedures of your facility. Noncompliance is a recipe for team disaster.

SuperStar_2013_logoI believe that the answer is not a simple yes or no. Here are my thoughts/recommendations on hiring a “star”:

  • Don’t hire anyone that isn’t excited about being part of your mission. Everyone from the cleaning people to the superstar trainers need to have the passion to work as part of a team that can create or provide something special.
  • Treat all of your employees like superstars. Pay everyone well and consistent for the position that they hold (everyone that has the same position receives the same benefits and pay). Give everyone the respect and kindness that we all deserve.
  • All employees are held to the same rules. Inconsistencies in how rules are enforced will create questions and confusion. Not enforcing rules is condoning the breaking of rules.

The question of whether or not to hire a superstar employee should be less about the star power that they may bring (although it can certainly an added bonus), and more about if they are a star fit into your company.

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Payoff; a Book Review

While I did a quick Facebook review on this book, I thought it deserved a more formal review. Payoff: The Hidden Logic That Shapes Our Motivations by Dan Ariely is a great book for business owners and managers. In it, Ariely explores what truly motivates people’s actions, particularly when it comes to getting the commitment and loyalty from

payoff book

employees. It’s a quick easy read (just 128 pages) from TED Books. However, don’t judge a book by its number of pages. Payoff has just that, a big payoff in its insight into how various reward systems effect the productivity of others (hint: it’s not money). Along the motivation lines, another book, Drive: The Surprising Truth About What Motivates Us by Daniel H. Pink, also delivers great research data on the science of motivation.

This book can help you create an enthusiastic, productive team that will stay with you as you grow your company.

*If you like the Dan Ariely title, you may also like Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions. It’s also a fascinating read.