Many are drawn to the Fitness and Wellness world because of the supportive and positive work environment these businesses offer. Working in Pilates, Yoga, Massage, and other bodywork studios can offer many benefits including competitive hourly wages, flexible schedules, and a healthy, serene, and fun atmosphere. As the owner of a NYC Pilates studio, I’ve interviewed many prospective instructors and receptionists over the last 6 years. Here are a few things I’ve learned during the interviewing process that may help you land your dream job.
1. Proofread, spell-check, edit, and repeat.
I have received numerous resumes and cover letters that have had typos, spelling and grammar mistakes, incomplete job descriptions, and no references. Avoid coming off as unorganized and unprepared by taking the time to proofread your resume. Always send a cover letter introducing yourself and why you feel like you would be right for the job. Take the time to personalize your letter and resume. Go ahead and send your references to avoid me having to ask for them later. This also shows that you have had a good rapport with previous employers and that you left on good terms which can add an extra boost of confidence for future employers.
2. Be professional.
Yes it’s acceptable to be totes caj when texting your bff or captioning your Instagram, but when applying for a job you might want to consider not relying on abbrevs, emoji’s, all caps, smiley faces, or excessive punctuation (!!!!!) to convey a certain enthusiasm for the job. Use real and entire words. Pink may very well be your favorite color OMG, but maybe not the best choice for a resume. Address your future employer in a professional way rather than saying “Hey guys, I was wondering if y’all might be hiring. That would be SO cool if you were!!!” Again, you don’t have to be formal and dull, but remember that you’ve likely never met this person before and you want to present your best self.
3. Know what you are applying for.
This may sound like a given, but I’ve had someone apply for a job at my studio and address it to another Pilates studio in the neighborhood. This means you should do a little research on the studio you are applying to. Find out about them through their website and what their philosophy is, or even take a class there. Do you feel like they are a good match for you? Would you be in a nurturing environment, learning skills that will better you and challenge you? Is the commute a realistic one for you? Can you be there for 7 AM clients on time and ready to work?
4. Don’t wait for a job posting.
Send over your cover letter and resume when you need a job, not necessarily when the studio is hiring. I’ve hired more instructors over the years that seemed enthusiastic about the position, regardless of whether or not I needed to hire. It’s easier on small businesses when you come to me rather than when I have to take time out of my normal day-to-day operations to post a job listing and then sift through hundreds of resumes and schedule multiple interviews.
5. Be proactive and persistent.
Don’t be afraid to follow up. If you don’t hear back, email and call back again. Sometimes studio owners get busy and are dealing with many things at once. Remind them that you sent in a resume and that you’re still interested in a job. Ask to speak with the owner on the phone or stop by to drop off a paper copy of your resume. Small businesses tend to operate quite differently than larger companies. Chances are it won’t take much effort to get an interview but it may take you going the extra mile.
6. Be humble and think long-term.
For instance, several of my instructors began as receptionists at my studio as that was the position I needed filled. They spent time in a studio environment that was inspiring to them and went on to become expert instructors that immediately had jobs upon the completion of their certifications. Or, the studio you would like to work at may just need to hire you for one class or as a substitute instructor but that could easily become a full-time position in the future. Climbing the ladder in the fitness and wellness world shouldn’t have you taking coffee orders, but you may have to show a sense of humility, drive, and dedication in order to turn your dream job into your dream career.
With a movement career that spans 20 years, Brynne Billingsley is the owner of Progressive Pilates Williamsburg, a premiere NYC Pilates studio, and the Artistic Director of Brynne Billingsley & Artists, a NYC based modern dance company. At her studio, Brynne creates unique and customized programs for her clients, specializing in therapeutic and alignment driven cutting-edge fitness.