More health club operators should raise the bar by teaching their staff to use luxury language. Doing so makes your members feel part of something special whether or not your health club is a luxury brand.
I believe in the power of language. If everyone in the fitness industry realized the power of speech and how its use can frame meaning and transform lives, we would pay greater attention to it. Maybe we would even be as committed to getting our language "in shape" as we are to getting bodies in shape.
Speech is a reflection of who you are, so you want to deliver your message with power, grace and meaning. Language also influences how people feel. Language influences thought and action. So we must speak with passion and eloquence. We must also speak succinctly. Stop using these fillers: um, ah, eh. Think before you speak. Practice.
Language is important in all aspects of life, including when you work with clients and members.
What words do you use in your clubs? How do you talk to your members, guests, prospects and colleagues? What message are you sending through your speech? How does someone perceive you and your club by your words and tone? How do they feel about being in your club?
While working a project that brought me within a seven-star resort and club, I found that the language spoken within this world-renowned property was different from the language spoken at many clubs. The language spoken at this resort was luxury language. This type of speaking made such an impact on guests, members and employees that I felt compelled to share it with you.
What is luxury language?
First, let's define luxury:
- A condition or situation of great comfort, ease and wealth.
- Something that is expensive and not necessary
- Something that is helpful that is not usually or always available.
Secondly, let's define language:
- Words of a particular kind.
- System of words or signs that people use to express thoughts and feelings to each other.
Luxury language could then be defined as: The type and style of language used within a luxury setting or used while selling a luxury product.
The words used in luxury language and average language deliver the same meaning, but each language has a different impact upon the listener. Luxury language evokes feelings of quality and of being a part of something special.
Here are examples of average words followed by their luxury language counterpart:
Average language: Thanks — Luxury language: Thank you
Average: You're welcome — Luxury: My pleasure
Average: Friend — Luxury: Colleague/Associate
Average: Sorry — Luxury: I apologize for my…
Average: OK, you got it, No worries, yup, yeah — Luxury: Certainly, absolutely, I would be happy to take care of that for you
Average: Let me — Luxury: Allow me
Average: …is done — Luxury: …is confirmed, is complete
Average: Maybe — Luxury: Perhaps
Average: Kids — Luxury: Children
Average: I do not, I cannot — Luxury: Let me find someone who can assist you
Average: Ah-ha — Luxury: I understand
Average: Hold on, just a second, just a minute — Luxury: One moment please, I will be right with you
Average: What did you say? — Luxury: May I ask you to please repeat that?
Average: You guys — Luxury: Ladies and gentlemen
Average: Are you done? — Luxury: May I ask if you are finished?
Average: Amenities — Luxury: Features
Average: Toilet — Luxury: Restroom, bathroom
Average: Bye — Luxury: Goodbye, have a pleasant evening, enjoy your workout
Average: Do you need anything else? — Luxury: May I assist you with anything else? Is everything to your satisfaction?
Using luxury language is important whether or not your facility is marketed as a luxury brand. If you do have a luxury brand, it is imperative to know that in a business setting, language is a direct reflection of your brand. If your club is not a luxury brand, using this type of language remains imperative because luxury words carry more weight in feeling and emotion, hence sending a message of quality and prestige. In this context, a feeling of prestige doesn't mean a sense of wealth but a sense of being a part of something special. And we want our members to feel like they are part of something special while in our clubs.
Raising the bar through speech makes an impact in your life and in your business. People take notice. And if employees adopt an elevated language philosophy within their organizations, they, too, feel part of something special.
There are many luxury words and phrases you and your staff can incorporate into your vocabulary if you look online. Doing so makes speaking fun and interesting.
Remember that language provokes feeling. It's emotional. Words have impact.
Raise the bar in your club by using luxury language. You will never have to apologize for practicing high standards of excellence through speech. Think and be more luxurious.
Ronna Clements is an industry veteran with a background that includes more than 20 years of success in sales, business development, marketing, coaching and leadership. As a coach and sales manager, she has earned a reputation for building cohesive teams that consistently generate outstanding results. Clements' strengths include a strong foundation in industry best practices and professional ethics, and she is noted for her motivational personality with an informed and direct speaking style. As a living health advocate, she maintains a healthy lifestyle and has a relentless passion for optimal health. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.