The D Blind Spot

– Over Directs –

Many, many years ago I worked out at a gym owned by a very talented man named Kim who was about 50 at the time.  He was a certified nutritionist who practiced what he preached.  In addition to being a fitness coach he was also accomplished in martial arts, having trained in Asia prior to moving to the US.  The combination of his fit appearance and his confidence in his ability to train someone gave him an impressive demeanor.  His training methods were very successful and helped many people hit their goals quickly.  He attracted accomplished coaches who wanted to learn his process.

His gym should have been incredibly successful and possibly have even grown into many locations and franchises. It didn’t.  His staff and client turnover (I barely made it through my 3 month intro offer) had him in constant struggle mode.  Kim had one huge problem – his Blind Spot!

The gym was set up with Kim giving lessons at one end while his coaches worked with other members throughout the rest of the gym.  From his position Kim could see everything.  He watched the gym like a hawk and often interrupted his coaches by shouting across the gym at the coach.  Everyone in the gym would stop to determine who he was shouting at.  Many of the members were uncomfortable with his constant barking.  His need to give immediate direction rather than offer his guidance after the session demeaned the coaches by making them look unqualified.

I could have understood a shout if it was necessary to stop a member from doing something harmful.  That wasn’t the case.  Kim had skilled coaches who were not jeopardizing the welfare of the person they were coaching.  He could have easily demonstrated the technique adjustment to the coach and client at the end of the session.  This would have been far less distracting to the atmosphere in the gym and would have made the client appreciative of the “Master’s” attention.  He would not have had a turnover problem.

Instead, coaches often left as soon as they felt they had mastered Kim’s techniques.  They went to another gym or started their own gym.  Kim was doing a fantastic job of creating his own competition!  In addition, the customers who had developed a rapport with their coach often followed them to their new destination.  Instead of success and growth, Kim’s business remained small and stagnant.  He earned his living from a nucleus of members who were either deaf or could tune out his shouting while they worked out.

The amazing thing was everyone but Kim could see his problem.  This is the point of calling it a Blind Spot!  You do it with no concept of the repercussions to your business or your team.  The Blind Spot of Over Directing for a D can also be intensified by the fact that the D can sometimes get into a “My Way or the Highway” mentality.  As you can see in Kim’s situation this combination of his Over-Directing Blind Spot and his “Do it My Way – Now!” mentality created a different type of highway – one that went right out his door and across town to the next gym.

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