At The Spot Athletics we preach culture all the time. Although nothing is ever perfect, I love the culture we have built and demand it from everyone.
I hear a lot of people talking about the culture not being what they want but I don't hear people talking about what they are doing to change it.
1. To change or build culture you must have a leader. Obviously I am the leader at The Spot Athletics but I cannot be the only leader. If I am then our culture cannot continue beyond the walls I reside in. I want to build The Spot Athletics into many locations and to do this I need a leader in each location demanding our culture from all who work there.
If there is no leader there will never be a consistent culture!
2. Mentor and build your leaders. If you are trying to change or build culture than it cannot be a battle you fight by yourself. You must recruit and build others to be leaders who can inform the culture when you are not around. I have several individuals who keep the culture the way I want it and most times I won't say something but make them address issues because not only do I want them to see it through my lens, but I want them to have the skills to properly address it.
3. Managing and leading people is a skill. If you want to make someone have a better squat you better first have them squat, then find their weak points and have them work on those. I put my people in leadership roles and then see where things break down and continually work on those things with them. I think all of life can be likened back to training. Most people only like to do what they are good at, my job is to make my leaders do the things they are bad at so they can become that much better.
4. Make sure the culture is written out, clearly defined, posted and gone over repetitively. This is one that I am not good at. I know it, I go over it, but I hate writing things so I haven't defined it as well as I should. As long as we are one location then that is OK but I am working on the definition so that as we expand there is no misunderstanding of what we demand.
5. Demand, not expect. I can expect my son to clean his room all I want but unless I demand that he do it, it doesn't get done. Obviously this is a little semantics but it matters in my eyes. We have expectations of the coaches in how they perform. We counsel and manage these expectations. But we DEMAND that everyone adheres to our culture. If people do not, then they are weeded out. I have had good people here who will be successful trainers at a commercial facility but they could not follow our culture and therefore could not continue to work here.
Ours is a strong culture and it takes a strong individual to live up to what we demand. We do this so that we are the best and we only want people who want to be the best at this craft that is called strength and conditioning.
To illustrate my point here is an email from my newest coach who is in charge of taking and emailing out notes from our strength staff meetings:
From 30,000 feet and $8 worth of shitty wifi, here are the notes from Friday's meeting. Sorry so late! See yall tonight. Thanks for all yalls help this week and with my delayed flight. Please let me know if you need ANY coverage coming up, be happy to help.
She didn't send these because I requested it, she did it because that is how we build our culture, to get things done no matter what.
So if you do not have the culture you want where you work, stop bitching about it and start being a leader and changing it.