Learning From the Experts at Megatraining 2013
Róisín and I recently attended NPE’s MegaTraining Conference in London, where some of the worlds best fitness business owners and coaches gathered to share knowledge, ideas, and stories about their own particular journeys. The conference lasted 3 full days, and afterwards, I felt compelled to jot down the main take home points as a blog post. There was some serious energy and inspiration surrounding the whole event, so here are a few of my highlights and lessons:
Highlight number 1: Meeting Dan John
Dan has a wealth of knowledge when it comes to strength and conditioning and has been the go-to source of training information, and general inspiration for life for many’s an athlete and coach for years, including me. So it was more than a pleasure to meet Dan and hang out with him at the conference. If you don’t know of Dan, check out www.danjohn.net. Dan gave a brilliant talk on being a mentor, and having a mentor, decision-making, epistemology, and the importance of having a mission in life. He also covered the topic of the importance of being part of a community. The talk went far beyond the realms of strength and conditioning, and encouraged the audience to introspectively look at their own philosophy in life, and there was great energy in the room. The standing ovation at the end of the talk was testament to power of the talk. Dan is an Irish –American, and very proud of his Irish roots, and has a soft spot for the standing stones that are dotted around the country. Róisín (with her archaeologists hat on) had a great time chatting about our ancient archaeological artefacts with Dan.
Highlight #2: Addressing the conference with the ACLAÍ Case Study
As part of the conference I had the great opportunity to present the ACLAÍ story so far to those in attendance. Even though it didn’t seem like great fun at 2am the night before finishing off the PowerPoint slides, getting up there in front of the crowd to share our story was brilliant! We really are only at the start of the road with ACLAÍ Health and Performance, but our story so far seemed to resonate with people, and we were delighted to get the lions share of the votes. As it turns out, we won joint first prize for the best case study along with Nicki Sehgal, hup!
Highlight 3: Getting to hang out with fellow entrepreneurs and coaches
It really was an eye opener to get to chat with so many people who were at different stages of their business development. People who had made it with their businesses and careers, and people who were just starting out with new businesses like ourselves. The personal stories were great, and to see what some have achieved in a relatively short space of time was awesome. Most of all, just hanging out with like minded people.
A special shout out to Heather and John Cogan who run Pangea Posture Fitness Systems in Hong Kong, and are in the process of building a new business in England. Emma Godly, who is about to make it big with her bootcamp business, Steve McGrath of Steve McGrath Health and Performance in Cork, who just opened the doors to an awesome new facility, Adrian Craddock who’s rocking it in Galway, Sarah from Cork Kettlebell Club, Steven from Bray, Niall from Drogheda, Kieran from Tullamore, and the rest of the Irish crew who were there. Also a big shout out to the guys from Chek Institue Europe, and James Breese at Kettlebell Fever who put us through our paces in the early hours of the morning! Wow, that list nearly sounds like a Christy Moore song!
Lesson #1: Surround yourself with people who expand you.
This is no joke. We came away from MegaTraining ready to rock the boat! Inspirational talks from all the guys at NPE, Dan John, and Pete Cohen had us focused on the big picture. And meeting up with the attendees really rubbed off on us. This is a great time to give a shout out to our business coaches Tom Jackobs, and Stacy Wisher- definite expanders!
This is a valuable lesson in any walk of life and was eluded to both in the talks at MegaTraining, and also in practice. The creative ideas were flowing freely during the conference and the feel-good factor was rife! Here at ACLAÍ we do our utmost to immerse our clients in a positive environment, and we also love surrounding ourselves with positive clients with great goals in mind. Furthermore, our ACLAÍ Team is a happy and positive team. Sometimes we disagree on things, but we always come out stronger from it, and in turn the clients get a continually improving service.
Lesson # 3: Where there is a will there is a way
NPE Member of the year is a key example of this lesson. Maxine Hayes gave a great presentation of how she turned her business Potential Personal Training into a great success in a short space of time by sticking to her marketing plan, and offering a service above and beyond what was out there. In tough economic times, this should be a great encouragement to all the small business owners out there.
We face a similar situation at ACLAÍ. Times are hard in Ireland, and there is much gloom-dom out there. Instead of focusing on the negative, we work doubly hard to offer a unique and unrivaled service to all our clients. We offer a professional level of service that will not be found elsewhere, and everyday, we add something to improve the client experience. Happy Clients = Happy ACLAÍ!
Lesson #3: Enjoy the ride
We love what we do, and we love training our clients and being there for them. However sometimes, we can get bogged down in the workload, and end up burning the candle at both ends. This is also a common problem among many of our clients when they first come to us. Athletes training too hard, proactive health clients not eating enough in an effort to lose weight, and busy parents tending to the whole family and neglecting themselves. We get our clients to give some time back to themselves to work on their own well being and fitness, and in turn they end up doing all their other jobs effortlessly and stress free. So we have re-committed to building a super-dooper business for people to come and train in and improve themselves, and we are going to enjoy the ride while doing so!
Overall, it was a great few days spent improving ourselves and our business, and getting to know lots of cool people. Thank you very much NPE Team! To get to know a bit more about NPE, check them out at www.netprofitexplosion.com.