Everyone who knows me, knows I got a guy for just about everything.
- Auto Body
- Weird shit I shouldn’t say on this site
- 10,000 other things
I don’t have an Overhead Door guy though. And none of my “guys” do either. Apparently, not one does.
That’s kind of strange.
One of my interns came in the office a few weeks ago and asked me if I “had a guy” for what she needed.
Of course I did and after I hooked her up with him, she asked how I know so many people in so many varied professions around here, and the country.
My answer was simple.
If you’ve been in business, or alive as long as I have and you don’t have a network you are doing something wrong.
I tell my son all the time to forge relationships with people and treat people well.
As you grow older you will value this. I used my high school as an example for him.
I was fortunate enough to go to an excellent school where personal responsibility, hard work and success was drilled into us.
It seems that the bulk of the kids I went to school with were very successful in the vocations they chose. Many of them are still a part of my network. I forged relationships when I was young.
I utilize those relationships almost every day.
She also asked (backing up a bit here) how I know so many of the top tier people in this industry.
My answer was the same, but with an addition.
I am also fortunate enough to be a part of TeamEliteFTS for many years and the network of outstanding professional we have here has been an invaluable tool for me in professional growth and success.
I’ve said a million times that I don’t know if would have survived the challenges my business has faced over the years without the relationships I forged as a part of this team.
I am constantly leaning on people from our Team to help me and go to Dave, JL Holdsworth and Marc “Spud” Bartley a lot for advice and answers to my questions.
I can’t name every member of the Team who has helped, but it’s most of them, these are just the three I torture most often.
Writing for the fitness mags has also helped me expand my network in this industry. I remember many years ago that I did a long conference call for some website I can’t remember, and the guy was going to use it as a sort of seminar. I got introduced to Alwyn Cosgrove on that call and we also had Jay Ferruggia and Jim Wendler as well. I already was pretty good friends with Jay and Jim, but never spoke to AC.
AC and I continued to talk and remain good friends today. If I have a business question, AC has the answer.
The point here is not to tell you all the people I know, rather to tell you to make connections with people and forge relationships. You never know where people will be later in life.
The best example of this is Rob Ihlendfeldt, the Angry Coach (gone too soon).
I’ve written about his before but in case you missed it, I’ll tell you again, but the short version.
Rob called me out of the blue a long time ago after he read one of my articles on this site.
He asked if he could ask me a few questions about training high school football players. Well, I’ll tell you, I was pretty honored that someone read my articles and thought enough of me to call and ask a question.
I could have been a dick and said I was too busy or that I charge for my time, but I really felt that five minutes of my time would be a fair trade for someone who thought my opinion was valid.
Rob and I talked and we hit it off. He asked if we could talk again if he had questions and I told him any time. We talked countless times over the years after that, he came to TPS a few times and trained, he started writing for this site and eventually became a big shot for Weider publications.
One day he called me and said he needed an article right away for Muscle and Fitness (I think, maybe it was Men’s Fitness).
I laughed at him and told him to ‘eff off.
He told me that he just got hired and was on a deadline.
I thought he was messing with me.
I did the article for him and then did many more. This lead to a long relationship with these two publications.
The relationship I forged with Rob that day made him a part of my network and me a part of his.
He needed an article and he “had a guy”. It also got me the best kind of advertising for my business, the free kind.
How does this apply to you?
Well, if you are a coach or a trainer you need a guy (or a girl) for a lot of different things.
You need a network.
You need to have people in your industry (and other industries) that you can ask questions of when you need help. They will also use you for advice.
You’ll also need to have people in your community that you can go to for countless things, especially if you are in business.
When you own a business, you will frequently need things and having a network is much better than asking people you don’t know. You are more likely to get the answer or the help you need quick.
I can’t tell you how many times this has helped me in business and life.
Get out, meet people, forge relationships, build a network.
As a coach, a good list of people to have in your network will consist of experts in areas that you are not.
Here’s a short list:
- Orthopedic Doctors
- Physical Therapists
- Soft Tissue Therapists (ART, Graston, Massage)
- Business Consultants
- Web Design/Development
As a coach, you’ve probably got the Training end of things down, but you will eventually need people to assist in other areas. Hopefully you won’t have to refer out to doctors or therapists with injuries, but if you do, “having a guy” will be better than not.
As an example, if I have an athlete or client that needs soft tissue work for an acute issue, I can:
A: have them find someone themselves and possibly have to wait two, three weeks or more to get in for treatment
B: email or call “your guy” and tell them you need to get your athlete in right away
I’ll go with B every time. I got a guy.
I am sure that you can come up with more examples of how this will be helpful.
This may also seem like common sense to may, but I can’t tell you how many times I’ve discussed this with people and it looks like a cartoon light bulb went off in their heads after we were done talking.
That’s it for this week. I have to go and get the gym ready for the HUGE Chris Duffin KMS seminar that starts tomorrow.
See, more networking.
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Vincere vel mori