Chief Learning Officer magazine is a trademark of Mediatec Publishing Inc. All clomedia.com and Chief Learning Officer magazine content Copyright 2013 MediaTec Publishing Inc. All Rights Reserved. It is illegal to copy, reproduce or publish any information contained on clomedia.com or in Chief Learning Officer magazine without express written permission from MediaTec Publishing Inc.
Fit to Learn
With a mix of inspiration, development and certification, Jess Elmquist is helping whip Life Time Fitness into shape for continued growth.
At Life Time Fitness, physical fitness isn’t just the company’s line of business. It’s part of its approach to employee development too.
There’s a direct correlation between a healthy body and the mental capacity to learn and retain knowledge, said Jess Elmquist, senior vice president of Life Time University (LTU) and of recruiting and casting.
“I could be the best instructor in the world but if I have people who are undernourished and not fit, it doesn’t make a difference,” he said.
Physical fitness is interwoven into many aspects of life at the company, from recruiting to instructor-led training that includes workouts to corporate leadership that creates the expectation and example for healthy living through their own participation in yoga, Pilates and fitness boot camps.
The benefits of being in good physical shape have little do with winning a race, said Fred Harburg, a business consultant and former CLO at Motorola and Fidelity Investments. Those benefits are cognitive and emotional and produce higher energy, focus, problem-solving ability, sound judgment and reasoning and emotional well-being.
“For better or worse we are physical animals housed in human bodies,” he said. “When we ignore our bodies we are very much ignoring business and inevitably compromising results.”
Elmquist, an avid mountain biker who competes in several races a year, takes that idea to heart in his work at Life Time. The Minneapolis-based company has been rapidly growing by expanding from fitness clubs into new lines of business, including events, medical clinics and spas, with the aim of becoming what Elmquist called a “healthy way of living company.”
As Life Time grows into a projected $1 billion company this year, it’s important that mission of living healthy is part of every employee’s life, whether it’s at work or at home.
“We have the ability to empower an individual to be better,” Elmquist said. “They have learned skills, tactics and new abilities that they will be able to put into play in their job and in their personal life. We’ve helped them become better people.”
Leveraging the Latest in Brain Science to Deliver the Next Generation of E-Learning
May 29th 1:00pm - 2:00pm CT
2013 CLO Breakfast Club, Boston
September 12th - 12th, 2013The Westin Copley Place
Fall 2013 CLO Symposium
September 30th - October 2nd, 2013Rancho Las Palmas Resort & Spa
Get the Magazine