He sits down with Dan to discuss how he went from being an engineer to a CEO, what it means to be an ethical salesperson, and why fitness professionals should understand their true value.
“You’re a valuable professional in your community. Your community needs you.”
Greg Mack is a former Navy diver, an engineer, and the ultimate sales guru. He’s been in the business for over 30 years and has created an ethical sales training system that will make you think twice about your role in the scary world of sales.
Listen in as Dan sits down with Greg to discuss what it means to be an ethical salesperson and why fitness professionals should understand their true value.
“You’re a valuable professional in your community. Your community needs you.”
— Greg Mack
Greg Mack: You as a coach or gym owner, you’re not a commodity. You’re not a banana or a grape or a pair of shoes.
Dan Uyemura: Welcome to The gymOS Podcast, helping fitness professionals become better business owners, one episode at a time.
Oh, man, I gotta tell you guys, I’m so pumped about this next podcast. We just did an interview with Greg Mack. He is a sales/fitness professional, and if you haven’t heard of him, it’s okay. He kind of operates outside of your traditional strength and conditioning space in the boutique world. But this guy knows his stuff. Sales professional, has been a nuclear engineer on a nuclear submarine, scuba diver and fitness pro for over three decades, so the dude is a vet in all senses of the word. One of the most defining moments of my life was I took a sales seminar, and the reason I did it is because working in a gym and on PushPress, sales became more and more important in my role. And I, probably just like you, hated the idea of being a sales person. So I kind of got introduced to this Greg Mack person through the MadLab group. He was one of their sales professionals teaching sales there, and all of his philosophies jived with what I was down with. He didn’t believe in lying. He routed his sales process on telling the truth. His concept was on being the opposite person that a normal sales person is, which is exactly what I didn’t want to be, a normal sales person. So, needless to say, within an hour of being in the seminar, I was completely hooked on everything he was telling me. My ears were opening. My eyes were wide and through a two days sales seminar, if you’ve listened to any podcasts previously, you’ll hear me say that that sale seminars was one of the most transformative moments of my life. It changed me from realizing that sales was dirty and bad and made me realize that if you approach it correctly, as a professional, it’s actually a really important piece of the transaction and the relationship that you’re building with your clients. So much so that I will argue, and I know Greg would argue, that your retention rates are going to be variant on how good your sales process is because that’s when you actually get to know the client, understand what they need and want, and it sets the table for you delivering that for them. And that’s the recipe for retention. So anyways, I could talk on and on about how great this interview with Greg was, but why don’t you just listen to it for yourself? All right? Cool.
Welcome back to the gymOS Podcast from PushPress. I’m Dan Uyemura, CEO of PushPress. And today I’m bringing to you someone that I’m so excited to talk to, and I’m pumped to be able to bring to your attention, and that’s Greg Mack. If you’ve listened to anything that I’ve said in any of the podcasts in the last few months, I probably have brought up Greg Mack. And Greg sits not in the center of the world that we’re all in, so I wouldn’t be shocked if a lot of you don’t know who he is, but I’m bringing him here to you today to meet. Greg, welcome to the show.
Greg Mack: Thanks, Dan, I’m certainly appreciative of you inviting me on. I’m really excited to be here.
Dan Uyemura: Yeah. Yeah. So, as a kind of background, actually, I’m gonna let you dive into the background, but I’m gonna have a quick one. Greg is a sales professional in the fitness space or a fitness professional in the sale space. I’m not exactly sure which one it is first, but I’m gonna let you dive into that. Why don’t you give us a quick background of who you are, where you came from, what you’re doing and why.
Greg Mack: Certainly appreciate that, Dan. I’ve been in the exercise and fitness field for coming up on 30 years now, full time. I started way back in 1990-91 following a six year stint in the U.S. Navy. I had gone to Ohio State University after high school, was a mechanical engineer, undergraduate and was also a certified scuba diver. I really like scuba diving and got certified at 16 years old as a birthday gift. And so I was trying to figure out how do I go forward here and what should I do? And I was looking at, you know, like in the engineering programming at OSU, and then I was looking at maybe being a commercial diver and there weren’t very many commercial dive programs available then, and someone had suggested I talk to the U.S. Navy because they had, you know, both programs. And so I thought, OK, I’ll go talk to the U.S. Navy and I sat down with a recruiter and, you know, they gave me entrance exams and I scored, you know, really high on their mechanical stuff. And they said, “Hey, we’ve got an engineering school. We want you to get in there and be a nuclear mechanical engineer.” And so I said, “Okay, can I be a diver too?” And they said, “Yes, you know, you could be a diver.” I was thinking about Navy Seals as well, but long story short, I decided to enlist in the Navy right after my freshman year in school and ended up graduating from their nuclear engineering program with an emphasis in mechanical engineering. I went to go serve onboard a Fast Attack, a nuclear submarine and the USS Swordfish, that’s a 7579 based out of Pearl Harbor, Hawaii and served in their engineering department operating the primary and secondary power plant systems, also was able to become a ship’s diver. I went to the Navy Dive School and graduated. Every submarine in the US fleet has at least two qualified divers swim the boat for radiation sweeps and sabotage and minor hole repair, things like that.
So, along the way, I’d always been involved in sports and athletics since I was a kid, baseball, football, skateboarding in high school before it was a big thing, and and so exercise, health, fitness, wellness was just something I did, using my body, moving around, but as a Navy diver, I had to stay in shape professionally. If I didn’t meet my quarterly requirements for runs and swims and pull ups and push ups and all that stuff, functional training before there was even a name for it, quite frankly, Dan is what we did. Then I lose my quals, and so now I’m working out, staying in shape, you know, so I can keep my dive qualification. And, you know, that really, really changed my mindset about what exercise and fitness was all about. Ended up starting a business part time because in all the armed services in the Navy, we had something, you know, we call the “fat boy program,” probably shouldn’t use that term anymore. But, you know, regular personnel that didn’t have specialty qualifications like I did that required high levels of physical fitness to do the job, they had to pass annual readiness requirements, and if they failed those, then they were put in remedial (pretty much mandatory) training three times a week until they could pass the regular annual exam. So a lot of guys on my submarine in my command started asking me, and some of my shipmates, and the guys I worked out with what to do and how to get in shape. And so we started kind of helping them and hooked them up with, you know, protein shakes and desiccated liver and weight belts and gloves, and they started a business kind of on the side ordering wholesale products from a company called Strength Systems at the time and next thing you know, my apartment’s filled with nutritional products and weight belts and gloves and stuff and lifting straps, and that’s when I kind of got the entrepreneurial bug and realized that really enjoyed kind of doing that more, I mean nuclear engineering and mechanical, and it sounds very romantic, it’s not, pretty boring, actually. Hard work, very rigorous, but again, highly useful. I mean, you know that education was tremendous for me. I still lean on it and use it every day at work.
Now I’m a certified medical exercise specialist, and when I got out of service and decided to switch careers and was looking around, went back to school, what do I do…ACE had just come out with a personal training certification, I got connected with a chiropractor and attended a workshop at a personal training summit where some demographic research was being put forth by a guy named Jeff Pinsky, who was looking at the upcoming baby boomers and telling us what they wanted by survey and one of things they wanted was their exercise programming and fitness program coordinated with their medical care. And I thought, “Well, that makes sense, you know?” So long story short, I wrote a business plan to do that called Physicians Fitness, and I’ve been doing that ever since. I’ve worked in a wide variety of settings, chiropractic offices, hospitals, outpatient physical therapy, big box gyms, private homes, private studios, currently practice in a private studio now in Columbus, and my practices focused on Neuromusculoskeletal care and exercising and pain. So that’s what I’m doing now. And along the way I realized, as an entrepreneur, I got to make money, and so I had to learn sales.
Dan Uyemura: I mean, that’s amazing, Greg. And first of all, I’d like to thank you for your service. I’ve actually had this epiphany recently, and in doing this podcast and kind of just taking a look around with a new perception, I realized I can’t throw a stone in the fitness industry without hitting like five ex-military guys, and I think it’s super cool. My experience working with military people has really reshaped my opinion…like I didn’t really have one before, but now I realize how the military really fine tunes people into great models of behavior. It’s an amazing epiphany I’ve had in the last six months, so thank you for your service. Okay, so nuclear submarine, scuba diver, turned slanging fitness equipment to the guys who can’t pass physical tests to now you’re working in personal training and fitness, I know you as a sales guy where did that come in and how?
Greg Mack: Yeah, well, that’s kind of an interesting story. A little convoluted, but, I mean, my father was a professional salesman for Abbott Ross Labs and so always been exposed to, you know, what sales was about through him, watching him practice and build presentations and things as a kid growing up. But really, it was more out of desperation, right? I mean, you know, I wanted to be in this field, and I wanted to make money and I didn’t know how, but again, as an engineer and as you know, someone trained in a high academic discipline like that. You know, I knew I needed a system. And in nuclear engineering and mechanical engineering, it’s all about systems, operating nuclear fast attack submarines is about systems, and so I needed a system, a way to create an input output process that got me the outcomes I was looking for. And so I started attending sales workshops, seminars, reading books, everything I could get my hands on to figure out, “Okay, How do I do this sales thing?” And I was really terrible at it for a long time, and just kept shaping it and honing it, ended up attending something called the Sandler Sales Institute that, you know, helped shape my current model and informed that, and I learned some other things along the way. So that’s really what I did was “I gotta figure this out.” When I first started, I thought about the sales thing as this necessary, terrible, evil thing I had to do in order to do what I wanted to do, which was help people exercise and get fit, and so I always had them separated, like, “Okay, I’ll do this terrible thing I hate, only so I could make some money and do what I want.” And over the course of time, I recognize that one, you know, if I had a system, it certainly made the thing go easier, the conversation, because what I realized as well, was the consumer has a system, whether it’s formally or informally constructed, they’ve got a way of dealing with sales transactions, they’re gonna put sales people on their heels, and so that wasn’t helpful either, and we can talk about how my philosophy and hypothesis of sales emerged from that experience. And so I started working on the system and realized, “Okay, if you know, if I’ve got a pathway and input output process, I can increase the probability that, you know, people hire me,” and so, I worked on that, and that’s what I present now, doing that for many, many, many, many years, and it works pretty good.
Dan Uyemura: Yeah. I mean, I can attest to that. You know, one thing you just said that that was very, it just kind of put me back was the customers coming in had a system, and it made me realize as you were talking that, like everyone out there who has a gym and his selling fitness, they have a system, whether they believe it or not, whether they understand it or not — their system might just suck, their system might be very nonoptimal for helping a customer, you know, but they still have a system. So I don’t know, I just want to remark on that. That’s pretty, like I always thought, either you work in sales or you don’t. But you’re working sales no matter what, you just might be terrible at it or you might be doing a disservice to people coming in, but you still have a system in the process. So one thing, I took your seminar, and I mean, I could deep dive into any topic of it, but there were so many preconceived notions I had about sales going into it that you broke. But it all started with one concept that I want to put on the table for you to talk about, and that’s about how, and you kind of alluded to this earlier, and that’s about how the sales process is broken. It’s just inherently flawed. Can you kind of put that on the table and explain it to our listeners so they can understand exactly where you’re coming from with this sales thing?
Greg Mack: Yeah, in the course, I lay it out, takes a little bit longer, but, you know, quick Reader’s Digest version is when I was looking at the sales process and wondering, “How come I don’t like it? How come it feels so terrible to me when I’m doing it?” Why does the customer, potential customer, seem kind of uncomfortable and defensive, “what’s going on here,” and just briefly looking at the history and how salespeople have been trained. You know, there’s this, these two things going on. One, salespeople have intense pressure on them by the companies they work for to produce money and have quotas and this idea of closing sales and signing the line that is dotted and getting the check no matter what. And so that creates kind of a negative high pressure process on their side. And then the consumer has probably been burned or sold things they didn’t really need want or oversold or undersold. They’re mad and they carry that resentment around about sales and, you know, sales is about money, and you want to talk about something that ruins relationships faster than anything I’ve ever seen. It’s money, and so money inherently has a stressor associated with it, especially when you think someone else wants your money. And so I looked at all that and said, “Man, this is broken because the problem is if you’re an ethical practitioner or professional, it doesn’t matter if you’re a nice person and have high morals and you have no, you know, malevolent intent towards a customer. When they interact with you, they think you’re a salesperson. Once the sales transaction is perceived, they initiate their defensive wall, and unfortunately, they do this to protect themselves, and I understand it, but it belies and limits truthful, honest disclosure of what’s really needed here, and so real decisions can’t be made. It’s terrible.
Dan Uyemura: Yeah, it’s interesting, like you said, the minute you feel like a sales transaction is coming upon you. You immediately go into defense mode where it’s like you don’t really want to hear what they say. You want to get away from them. You want them not to talk to you, like all these crazy things. You might even have a physiological response. We start sweating, you know, like all these crazy things start happening and the transactions ceases, even though, as a customer, you might need that transaction to happen, right? And I think that was the interesting dichotomy I got from one of the first takeaways from your seminar was the customer is there because they want something too, you know? And so how as a sales professional can you bridge this gap, how can you make it so a customer coming to you wants your service but at the same time, starts getting defensive if you start selling.
Greg Mack: Yeah, the first thing is an internal mindset change from the professional side, you know, and thinking differently about what’s happening here, and two, recognizing the nature of the beast of the suspect or prospect, as we call them, the potential customer and realizing that, you know, it’s not personal, it’s just they’re saying, like a reflex mechanism, “Oh, this is sales, this is about money, that makes me nervous. I don’t wanna get screwed.” So they put up the defensive, and so we have to recognize the reality of that one, and two, how do they recognize that they’re in a sales transaction? Well, sales transactions and salespeople they smell the same, they have a look, they sound a certain way, right? They talk a certain way. And so you have to learn and apply entirely different communication strategies and tactics so that you don’t start coming off and sounding and acting like a traditional salesperson. Because if you do that, they’re going to keep their defenses up. And so we have to teach what that is, and how to do that, so they start to relax and want to actually tell you the truth about what they need because that’s really ultimately what the sales transaction is. It’s an interview to make a decision, and the decision might be no as much as it might be yes, and that’s legitimate,
Dan Uyemura: Right. So this last weekend, I ran in a 50K, and usually when I run in these long distance runs, I listen to podcasts and there was actually a moment in this podcast, It was Reid Hoffman’s podcast, Masters of Scale, and he actually mentioned in hyper local situations, you cannot do Glengarry Glen Ross sales. That literally made me think of you because you made us watch that episode or that scene from the movie where it’s like first place gets a Cadillac, second place gets knives, third place is fired, right? And they literally use that quote in this podcast and Reid Hoffman’s a huge, like he’s doing $100 million company deals, and he’s espousing the same, like literally the same exact stuff, you were saying in your seminar to me in that podcast. And he literally said in hyper local, which is a gym, hyper local sales transactions. The Glengarry Glen Ross tactic doesn’t work, so obviously we don’t have the time or the bandwidth to go into your two day sales seminar on this podcast. You mentioned that the sales transaction, okay, so the nuts and bolts of it is, people get defensive if the sales transaction gets put upon them. And as a professional, you’re kind of controlling this conversation so you can control if you’re gonna be a traditional, typical sales person or not, and the next concept is you’re interviewing this customer to get to a decision. I think if you frame it from that, that in and of itself will kind of stop you from being a traditional salesperson. Can you maybe give us one tactic or one tip or just like your entry salvo into doing that, so that the person doesn’t immediately throw up their defenses and go salesperson, put up a cross, and try and get away from you versus engaging you into a conversation and getting them down the road of qualification into a client?
Greg Mack: Yeah, it’s an important thing, and I do give you a wide variety of techniques and tactics. I mean, one of the key philosophies is to do the opposite of what traditional salespeople do, and one of the things that salespeople do is they always want you to say “yes,” “yes,” “bye,” and I’m gonna tell you to say “no.” Stay on the no side. Don’t make promises you can’t keep. Don’t tell this person, a stranger to you, that you can fix everything and that you’re gonna help them, you know exactly what to do and you’re the best product service in the world and your coaches…if you start to sound like that you sound like a traditional salesperson. And so one is to stay, what we call stay on the no side, stay on the side that is, “you’re not sure,” “I don’t know if I can help,” “what we do doesn’t work for everybody,” “you know, our culture here isn’t for everybody.” And so, you know, that tonality to statements you make is really an important and subtle distinction to make in terms of how you frame your own statements and then behind that is, the person who’s asking the questions is in control of the conversation. And so that’s why I call it an interview in the sense that interviewers are the ones asking the questions because what happens right now is when someone feels like they’re in a sales transaction. They know very quickly how to put a salesperson on their heels and put him on the defensive, and one of those techniques is just to start asking a lot of questions. “How much is it? Where can I get started? Can I cancel? When is your class schedule? Can you send me some info?” And they just start asking questions and you’re on your heels, and you’ve been trained since you were a child to answer every question asked you, and you become an answering kiosk. This is broken, you can’t do this. It’s not good for them. It’s not good for you. You need to be the one asking the questions. And so the second thing is what we call reversing, right When someone asks you a question, “How much is it? Where are you located? Can I quit?” Have you ever hurt anybody before?” All of these things. You have to give them what’s called a validating statement or a softening statement where you just acknowledge in a simple way that they have asked a question, this is the stranger, and that could be a simple as “I appreciate that question.” “I like that you’re interested in knowing that.” “I appreciate what you’re trying to get done.” “That’s important.” Any number of things can be said, you know, so you don’t sound like an interrogator versus an interviewer, and then you’re gonna ask the question pretty much right back to the prospect, to the suspect, to the potential customer. So they’re the ones that have to answer. Now, this doesn’t mean you don’t give them any information, and for us, information like features and benefits and things that you offer is called candy. And instead of just giving away your candy for free and your time, your most valuable resource, any time you give a particular customer, a potential customer, any information, you ask them a question immediately after giving them the information. So someone was to say to you, “Where are you located,” and you don’t do a nurture reverse statement, and you say, “We’re located on the north side of L.A.” You have to ask a question immediately because if not, they’re gonna be ready right away with their next question. And so you say, “We’re in North L.A. Where are you coming from? Where do you live? Is that far from you?” Some question that you have to ask, so that you stay the questioner Critical, it’s got to be done.
Dan Uyemura: Yeah, that’s a huge, huge, huge, so if you’re listening in that right now, it’s probably, it is one of these subtle things that you don’t realize until it’s told to you that the person asking a question, does indeed own and control the conversation. And there was something you were doing in there, when you were asking all those hypothetical questions I instinctively wanted to just start answering, start rattling off answers. And it’s something that you’ll have to fight if you want to control the sales conversation, you have to fight that, and not just throw answers out and become, like you said, an answer kiosk. But flip it around and make them answer questions too. The candy concept, I feel is good, because if you think of your answers, your answers truly are a resource. There’s some value to them. They want to know them, but you deserve as a 50% participant in this transaction, you deserve some candy, too, right? And that’s the idea of throwing questions back because if you get in this model of just giving away all the information, they’re gonna leave knowing what your hours are, what your specialty is, how much prices are, what’s the cancellation, and you don’t know anything about them. And you can’t do anything with that, right?
Greg Mack: No, that’s the downside, and the consumer doesn’t understand it, unfortunately, very well. They think they protected themselves when, unfortunately, they’ve left a critical decision on the table, and they may have missed what they actually needed and what really would have helped them. But they just didn’t allow the person representing the service to know what they really needed, and so, that’s not good for them, and it’s not good for you as the gym owner or coach. It’s just not good for either of you. So, you know, the system that we’ve developed now is win-win, and that’s why I have to be in charge of it. Because, you know, I’m taking both of us to a place where they’re gonna win and I’m gonna win. It can’t be, they win, I lose or they think they win, and I thought I win because I answered all the questions properly and you got nothing. You never hear from them again, you know the old “Let me have a business card.” You know, that’s just their trump card to get out of the sales transaction.
Dan Uyemura: Yeah, I think all of this, there’s a genesis to all this, actually, and it starts with, you as a fitness professional have to realize you’re providing a service of value that’s actually helping people and that people need because once you actually acknowledge that to yourself, then you can say when these people are coming to you, it’s like, you have to suss out if your beneficial services can help this person with whatever their problem is. You know, you can’t just see it as a one-sided transaction where they’re shopping from you and you’re hoping to close a deal. You have to really, like, and without all that information in question asking, you can’t really determine for them if you can help them. That’s why it’s important that you recognize your value first because that will help you and asking the questions to get to the point where you can make that decision
Greg Mack: Right, and that was one of the key things that helped me, you know, merge and synergize the sales process with the technical delivery. Once I realized, wait a minute, all the information I need about how I’m gonna make decisions technically and interact with this person start and I get from the sales transaction and then the relationship I’m trying to build starts in the sales transaction. So it actually became way more valuable to me, as a professional, to understand how this works because if I can set the stage right and we could make great first decisions and have full understanding of what’s going on here, things just get easy. But the problem is, you know, in a consumerism society where almost everything is looked at like a commodity, not a professional relational transaction and long term process, which is what exercise is, we want exercise to be occurring for someone for the entirety of their life span, not a couple of weeks. And when the modern consumer who I understand, I mean, if I can get something cheaper and it’s still satisfies my need, I’ll do it and they’re gonna try to drive the price down and drive the price down and drive the price down and Walmart, Sam’s Club and these kind of…you know they’re onto that, but they sell commodities. You as a coach or gym owner, you’re not a commodity. You’re not a banana or a grape or a pair of shoes. You’re a professional trying to help somebody with their health, one of the most valuable and complicated things to deal with in the world, and it takes time, and so you’ve got to take the position and you should that you have rights in this transaction just as much as they do. And if you don’t like what’s going on, you can say no. Because ultimately we not only want to build a profitable business, but your business is constituted from and keeps sustaining itself based on the quality of the professional relationships you have, and that begins in the sales transaction. If that’s tight, everything gets better.
Dan Uyemura: Such a huge concept. Yeah, yeah, like and again, this is something that until it’s said to you, it’s so obvious that you miss it, like your member retention at your gym, how well you serve them for 24, 36, 48 months, it starts with sales. It starts with the relationship you build in the sales process. And at my first gym, I was so afraid of sales. We called it the “no sale sale,” where we would put them through fundamentals, and after the last day we’d be like, “Thank you for joining us. See you later.” And that doesn’t do anything for the customer. It doesn’t tell them how we can help them, like they got to experience the product, but we were so afraid of selling it, we were really doing the customer disservice in so many ways. And we’re doing our business of disservice because we weren’t able to set the table how we want it set, you know, for the longevity of the customer. So again, another huge topic that you don’t realize you’re doing until it’s spelled out to you, and hopefully, you know, these concepts were being spelled out.
So let’s actually move away from sales. I want to recap this because, honestly, guys, they’re so much stuff to learn about sales like we’re going over like the high level stuff that the details are kind of what matters in this. And we’ll give Greg an opportunity and kind of give you a little more resources on how to understand the details better, but bottom line, sales transactions make consumers defensive. And once they get defensive, it becomes an emotional thing, not a rational thing, right? So you want to avoid acting like a typical salesperson, so Greg’s advice on acting the opposite of whatever you think a salesperson would do is the easiest way to do this, right? Stay on the No.
So it was funny when Greg was going to this example of basically like, “I don’t know if I can help you. I don’t know if we’re the right gym for you.” When I was hearing him say that it made me want his services more like what do you mean you can’t help me? I want you to help me. You know, it flips that conversation. Relationships start with sales. This wasn’t mentioned, but this is a huge part of it. You need to find, you need to let them tell you what their emotional pain is, why they’re coming to you and let them tell you what the pain is. Don’t try and paint that for them because the pain derives the value of the transaction. And value your time and your information, right. These are all huge concepts that, at a broad stroke, if you can at least absorb those, it will put you in the right path.
What I want to talk about next is another kind of topic from your seminars, which is honestly, it’s one of the hardest things for me to even do, is finding new, you call them, suspects or prospects, and you have a methodology for it.
Greg Mack: A new human.
Dan Uyemura: A new human. Yeah, for your typical gym owner listening to this right now they’re probably posting on social media, they might be writing blog posts. They might be creating some type of cyber presence about themselves and their business. What do you think, what’s the lowest hanging fruit that they can do to try and find more customers today?
Greg Mack: Yeah, this is critical because, you know, you’ve got to do the social media thing right? You got to have marketing. You gotta put your message out because, you know, when consumers are looking around, that’s what they look at to build credibility and established reputation as they search for you online and and see what they can find about you. So all that has to be done. You know the thing about, you know, outbound marketing and social media, and posting, is it’s a very reactive process. You just have to wait until the fish bites your line. You know, you can’t do anything until the fish chooses to do something, and so you’re sitting around waiting and that can be tough on you might not even catch the fish you want. What you can control is what you do. And I would doubt that anyone out there listening lives in a community where if they walk out their door, there’s only 100 people that live near them. There’s probably several 1,000, if not more, and typically what we see in gyms and coaches is you only need a certain number, you know, to make money and to make a great living, maybe it’s 50-75 people that you’re managing per coach and everybody’s doing great. Well, there’s plenty of humans to go around there who could use your service, you have to go talk to them, and it’s really the missing, it’s the missing process now, we’ve turned marketing and sales into this turnkey commodity, Amazon…order and click, and you’re done thing. That’s not how professional relationships go, and and so, you know, I would tell you to go out and meet people in public at meetings. We define these things for you, how people meet, what conditions they meet under fares, parades, sports events, Rotary Club, Starbucks, and there’s lots of places people gather and hang out and walk around. You gotta go talk to them. Introduce yourself. I would bet that within a one mile radius of your gym there’s probably 200 businesses, and I would say, “Why not just walk into one and say hello? I’m a neighbor of yours. My business is down the street over here, and I thought I’d come by and introduce myself.” I mean, how could there be any harm in that, even if when you walk in, somebody inside the business says, “Oh, yeah, well, thanks for coming by. We’re really busy right now, but thanks.” You’re gonna leave, you don’t want to be rude, but maybe you just simply asked, “Is there a time I could come back where I could talk to you guys and meet you and find out what you’re doing and everything?” And they might tell you come back on Thursdays after 4pm, that’s when we start closing down and come back after 4pm and start talking to people and telling them what you do and how that works because, if not, you’re just going to sit in your boat waiting for fish to jump in, and that might take longer than you want, and you might not even catch the fish you want that way.
Dan Uyemura: Let me actually ask a question on that, because again, for some weird reason when you say that it makes me feel a little nervous. Like walking into other businesses and introducing myself, and let me tell you why because when I owned Torrance Training Lab every time some dude or somebody walked into the gym selling whatever they were selling, it was the exact same transaction we just talked about 10 minutes ago. “Yeah, Yeah, I’m busy. No, I don’t really want your stuff. Like, don’t talk to me. I’ve got stuff to do. How dare you walk into my business,” those are the feelings I had. There must be some technique to enter someone else’s business and stay on the no or whatever it might be for that conversation. Can you kind of spell that out?
Greg Mack: Yeah, you know, our default is always, we tell the truth because if what we’re doing isn’t built on truth, we’re done. And what’s the truth? The truth in that situation, so if I walked into Dan’s place and I said, “Hey, Dan, my name’s Greg, I’m a neighbor down the street. I’ve got a business, sorry, I didn’t come in here sooner, you’ve been here for awhile, I just wanna introduce myself, say hi.” And you give me the once over and say, “I’m sorry, we’re really busy and I don’t have time for you.” And I would say, “I understand.” You know, what’s the truth? “The truth is, look, you know, I’m in the people business, and I’m just trying to meet people in my community, and I certainly would love to meet you and your staff sometime just to get to know each other, what you guys are doing and what I’m doing, is that okay?” What are you going to say to me?
Dan Uyemura: Yeah, it’s crazy because, again, it’s one of those things that the minute you say it, I’m like, “Oh, that’s obvious.” But it’s so obvious you just overlook it. If somebody is, like, honestly, what you’re expecting them to say is to put on a sales pitch and a song and dance about why you need to go and visit their gym, buy their product, drink their drink, but if what they just tell you, is like, I just want to meet you and shake your hand and get to know what you do. Let me know when I can come back. That would, like what you just said, sounded so honest and earnest, it took my guard all the way down and, honestly, just having this conversation and walking through these wire frames with you are bringing me through emotional roller coasters like, “Oh, that makes me feel nervous. Oh, no, no, no. I feel good about that.” That brought my guard all the way down, and I felt really kind of weird about the idea of walking into someone else’s business and talking to them. But there it is, like it’s so obvious, you overlook it. Just tell the truth and be honest. And again, that was something in your sales seminar that really struck me is just tell the truth. Like you said, if we’re not rooted in truth then what are we doing? There’s no point, right? Hopefully you get, like, again there’s so much here to unpack. Honestly, I would love to throw a seminar and have you come out and give the full deal on it because there’s so much to learn in sales, and it actually, in my opinion, made sales a reputable, honest thing to do, which is like the exact backwards connotation everyone has with sales, but let’s step away from all this. Thank you so much for introducing some of these topics. Hopefully, our listeners got a whole bunch of, like, big broad stroke nuggets to pull out and think about. Like I said, in a little bit, we’ll let you give them a little bit of information about where to find out more.
But, one thing I like to ask everybody is a podcast about expanding our knowledge and becoming a better business person or, you know, expanding your world view on topics bigger than just fitness. Are there any podcasts or books that you’re reading, read or want to read that you think can help your average gym owner expand their worldview at all?
Greg Mack: Oh boy, Yeah. There’s a lot of books they could get their hands on, in regards, to expanding worldview, one of the disciplines that make up the five pillars of the methodological construct we teach is transactional analysis, and this is a subset of, you know, modern psychology. A lot of what we’re talking about when we have to deal with is the psychological side of this transaction. And so there’s a book called TA Today by Vann Joines (J-O-I-N-E-S) and another author (Ian Stewart), and it’s called TA Today, and it talks about how personality is constructed and developed because what I would share with you is we’re the problem in the transaction, not the consumer. The consumer is just the consumer, and that’s just how they are, so we have to look at ourselves and understand ourselves and how we’re constructed psychologically and emotionally so we can control ourselves because that’s the only thing we can do. And if we get better at controlling ourselves, and how we think, and feel, and express ourselves, then we’ve got a shot at influencing somebody in some direction. So TA Today would definitely be something I would recommend. And David Sandler, if you can even find this book by David Sandler (S-A-N-D-L-E-R), it’s called You Can’t Teach a Kid to Ride a Bike in a Seminar, and a lot of the concepts we’re talking, you’re gonna you’re gonna read and see. You know, I read that book and that’s part of the Sandler work I did, and the coursework I teach, I bring that to life for you and take it out of the book, show you how it actually works in real time. So those would be two recommendations.
Dan Uyemura: Awesome. Thank you so much. Now, as far as you go, is there any place somebody listening today who is kind of sparked, and again, I’m hoping to have you speak somewhere where we can bring you out to our gyms, but in the meantime, is there any place someone could go right now? If you’ve lit a fire under them to learn more about Greg Mack and the Greg Mack sales techniques, where can they go?
Greg Mack: Real close, almost done. I’ve been teaching the coursework live, a long time, a couple decades, and it’s about ready to be launched online. So I’ve recorded I have a full video recording of a live workshop delivered over 28 hours, and that’s real close, here in the next couple weeks. Hopefully, that’ll be online on, and so I own another company called Exercise Professional Education, web address is www exerciseproed.com, and so keep an eye on that, and check in and you’ll see real soon here that you can actually take this coursework online if you want to do it that way versus a live course but I still get a lot of requests for live courses because there’s a definite dynamic there that you can’t capture online, but either way, I would definitely recommend considering that
Dan Uyemura: Yeah, having gone, having gone through your live course myself, I can personally say there is a charisma to Greg that I don’t feel can be replicated, as well over video. You’re just fun and funny and charismatic. It’s a great live event. I’m sure the online one’s good, but I know that the live one is great. It was in Vegas when I went and, like me and my co founder here at PushPress, we went together, and I didn’t even drink that night because I’m like, “We gotta get up early in and check out this seminar and I wanna have my brain with me.” So, I mean, it was that good, it stopped me from drinking in Vegas. I’m gonna nag you, negotiate with you once we hang up here, hopefully some way I could get a discount from my PushPress gyms to take this because I think this is so impactful and so meaningful to every gym owner. They have to do it. So once that’s ready, I’m gonna want to know about it, and I’m gonna be bugging you to give my gyms a discount. But if not, I mean, I think it’s still worth it either way.
Greg Mack: We’ll figure something out.
Dan Uyemura: Just wanted to throw that out there. Yeah. Cool. All right, Well, thank you, Greg. Is there anything in a parting shot or a parting words of wisdom you want to give to the people listening today?
Greg Mack: You’re a valuable professional in your community. Your community needs you. Quality of life is directly dependent on how well someone physically could move and use their bodies. And that’s your thing. And so that’s why it’s so important. And you should never be shy about telling people what you do because it’s so powerful. You’re worth it. You have value.
Dan Uyemura: Absolutely. I think that is so lost in today’s world where everyone’s just looking at screens and worried about, you know, whatever superficial crap they’re worried about again. Another words of wisdom from Greg. That is so obvious. You overlook it. Our soldiers are, our clients are out there fighting a good fight, and we’re here to support them. Learning how to sell will enable them to learn to support themselves. It’s the whole “teach a man to fish” concept, like, there’s a lot of, you know, these challenges and online landing page systems out there, which, you know, they have their place and their value. But if you’re not learning how to sell, and you’re not learning how to find your own fish. You are reliant on another system, so just something to think about. All right, Greg, thank you so much for your time. I tremendously appreciate it. I’m glad we’ve kind of been able to keep in touch and stay in touch over all the years, and I’m looking forward to continually working with you as we progress down this road.
Greg Mack: Thanks, Dan. I had a lot of fun. I appreciate the opportunity.
Dan Uyemura: So there it was, I hope you guys enjoyed that and got as much out of it as I did, and it’s crazy because I’ve already taken a sales seminar, and I’ve kind of lived everything he’s taught for the last four years now, and in talking to him, I am just blown away with the concepts he just casually drops that make me go, “Damn, that’s right.” I mean, you probably heard me say it five times in that podcast that he just said something so obvious that I overlooked it, even though I might have already been taught it.
If you’re listening to this podcast and you feel like sales is dirty or gross or something you don’t want to do, you need to understand that it is materially and adversely affecting your business. There’s a way to do it right. We’re gonna be diving into that here at PushPress on the gymOS Podcast. All the content we’re gonna be putting out is going to be here to help you run a better gym, and we will be talking to Greg about trying to get him to do a live seminar exclusive for PushPress clients, so if you’re interested in that, make sure you reach out to us and let us know, because obviously the higher demand, the easier it’s gonna be. Greg has so much to share with this community, and he will transform your business from the sales perspective, and the process perspective, that’s a guarantee. I’m just so pumped that he was able to come on this podcast and share some of that with you guys today. So whether you just take what he told you today at a high level and run with it or you want to dive deeper and use some of the links that he threw out there and maybe attend a seminar later, that’s your call. But just know that we’re here to help you expand your business as far as you want to make it expand.
Thank you for listening again. If you find value in this, leave us a review, it’ll help other gym owners find us. Give us a five star that I would be super stoked about that and subscribe. You can find us on the Apple Podcasts or Spotify Podcasts, wherever you’re listening now, just subscribe. We’ll be here for you every Monday, dropping hot content right to your ears.
Until then, keep on grinding, guys. See you later.
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