Testimonials

As an independent sales professional with over 25 years of experience delivering sales training to the leisure industry, Marina Solutions Ltd has been established on the back of strong recommendations from a range of reputable clients.

My approach is based on  to my client’s requirements and delivering consultancy and courses that directly address my client’s business needs.

private sector
public sector

I have worked with Marina for almost 10 years, firstly when she trained me as a Membership Adviser, then more closely when I worked at Parkwood Leisure Head Office and we utilised Marina’s skillset to deliver training across the entire Parkwood estate. Marina has a unique way of bringing out the best in people; often walking into the room of quiet, apprehensive employees, and being able to connect with them on all levels and motivating them to engage and learn. 

Our strategy was to invest in Marina’s talent during December to get everyone from receptionists to duty managers to memberships advisers ‘pumped’ for the January madness. And that is exactly what she did, during my time at Parkwood, we found the impact of Marina’s training resulted in phenomenal sales figures. The training Marina delivered had a direct correlation with our mystery shop results too, with January always being our best-performing month for mystery shop results. 

To this day, whenever my clients ask for recommendations on training solutions to improve their mystery shop scores for both sales and customer service, I never hesitate to recommend Marina.

Chloe Kinch – Director of Client Success, Proinsight

Marina coached our Senior Management Team to enhance the team dynamic and set up the relevent tools to aid our Leadership and Management Skills longer term.

Marina used her exceptional knowledge of Belbin Profiling to assist with this exercise.

Marina has supported the transformation of our team and business from an initial position of ‘Start Up’ through to an established enterprise. Marina’s focus and abilities are second to none and her commitment to her projects is commendable.

I would have no hesitation in recommending Marina.

Ashley Butterfield – CEO AEPG Ltd

This year we have engaged Marina’s services to improve our internal sales skill and launch our first customer CX summit. Marina has been a superb addition to both activities and completely understood the objectives required and delivered with professionalism, fun and warmth. I would not hesitate to recommend Marina’s services and the impact that she can bring to an organisation, I will be looking to see how we can maximise Marina’s services again soon.

Sales Training
We identified that the Sales and Commercial team needed some additional sales training to sharpen our sales skills and improve the current processes, focusing on Q4 target and get ready for 2024. Marina took time at the start to understand our business and objectives and then tailored the training to our objectives.

Marina was able to quickly adapt to the team, understand our areas of development and focus on individual’s training needs. Through a well-structured sales training programme Marina provided the right balance of theory and practice to help us learn the new methods taught over the 2 day programme.

The whole team found value in the 2 days of training and learnt new techniques to improve everyone’s skill and sales techniques. These practices are now imbedded in our sales process and used by all members of the team.

CX Summit (Fitronics and ProInsight)
For our 1st Cx Customer summit Marina started the day with an awesome introduction and warm up, this set the scene for the whole day, getting delegates up, meeting each other, engaging in conversation, and enthused for the full day ahead. Marina has an amazing skill to ignite the passion in the room, gain people’s trust and find the right balance between fun and business. The day went on to be an amazing success and I truly feel that a big part of that was starting the day on such a positive note.

Peter King – Fitronics, Commercial Sales Manager

 

I am delighted to provide an outstanding testimonial for Marina Thomas. Marina has been my business coach for the past 2 years and has been pivotal in supporting me lead my senior management team to success.

Marina also supports our business with our senior management team recruitment using Belbin profiling. This has added an additional impactful layer to the recruitment process, saving the business time and money helping us to define the roles and find the right senior people.

Marina has displayed clear expertise and a remarkable ability to inspire and guide our senior team towards becoming effective leaders.

Having also attended Marina’s leadership training and team building workshops with our wider teams, I can confidently say that it was a truly excellent experience to all who attended. Marina’s unique approach combines comprehensive knowledge with an infectious passion for nurturing leadership skills. The insightful content and interactive sessions delivered by Marina, create a dynamic learning environment that totally engage and encourage participants to step out of their comfort zones and move forward easily.

I have found that one of the key strengths of Marina’s training is her ability to tailor the course content to diverse audiences. Regardless of the industry or organisational level, Marina effortlessly connects with individuals and understands their specific needs and challenges. Whether you are a seasoned executive or a budding manager, Marina has the exceptional ability to deliver relevant and practical strategies that can be immediately implemented, making quick and noticeable change.

Marina also clearly demonstrates that her leadership training goes beyond theoretical concepts, she skilfully incorporates real-life examples and case studies. She provides tangible illustrations that resonate deeply with participants. Marina’s passion, in-depth knowledge and genuine connection with people easily creates a safe space for open and honest discussions.

We look forward to continuing our work with Marina at Educated Body.

Phillippa Hardman CEO Educated Body

 

Marina is an inspiring teacher. She simplifies complex concepts and makes her subject matter accessible to all. She delivers her sessions with passion and understanding, quickly “reading the room” to identify how to get the best out of those present. The way she connects with people is remarkable to see. There is understanding without judgement, and because of this people feel empowered to achieve more.

Marina’s expertise in team dynamics is a standout. She skilfully makes use of the Belbin Team Roles theory to understand first the people, and then their best fit roles. She has used this in real-world situations, promoting collaboration, and has a track record of leading teams to hit targets.

I highly recommend Marina to any organisation that is looking to develop their leadership teams, enhance team dynamics, hit targets, and develop business strategy. She consistently delivers outstanding results, and I will continue to work with her on many future projects.

Andy Kay – Co-Founder & Director, Socius Investing

Marina Thomas has been instrumental in transforming our leadership team at Orbit 4 Global. Her expertise in coaching and strategic planning has empowered our management team to set and surpass their goals, both individually and as part of their sales teams. As the CEO and founder of the company, Marina has been an invaluable advisor to me, offering guidance in recruitment, HR support, and team development to ensure we achieve our targets.

One of Marina’s many strengths is her ability to facilitate impactful training events. She has a unique talent for motivating the team and fostering trust, resulting in the creation of actionable plans that consistently yield exceptional outcomes. Marina also introduced BELBIN to our business, which has become an invaluable tool for recruitment, leadership, management, team building, and enhancing communication.

I wholeheartedly recommend Marina to anyone seeking to enhance their leadership and management skills. With her support and guidance, you can confidently shape your abilities and reach new heights of success.

Daniel Jones – CEO, Orbit4

 

Even with the limitations that COVID-19 has presented us with, Marina ensured that our virtual training was as engaging and thought provoking as if my team and I were in the room with her! She framed our thought process in a simple, yet effective manner and you can tell that Marina lives and breathes her philosophy.

Anna Wilson – Membership Services Manager

Following from the chaos of Covid and our industries lockdown we hired Marina to come into our health club to help inspire, re-motivate and provide practical direction for our front of house team and gym instructors . Marina was empathetic, and engaging in relating to the teams whilst providing a clear pathway for improvement. We couldn’t recommend Marina more highly and we look forward to working with her again.

Seb Barre
 – General Manager
 The Laboratory Spa & Health Club

Precor UK works in partnership with Marina Solutions Ltd to set our customers up with initial & ongoing excellence in Sales and Customer Service support. For Precor our customers success is always much more than the quality of our equipment. Marina Solutions Ltd ensures that our partners have high quality & proven systems in place to increase & retain their membership base. Marina helps to put customer journeys and sales processes in place ensuring that all staff are confident in their skills and our customers are always delighted with the service and the results they get from Marina. Fully trained and motivated staff are critical to any business and Marina’s training helps transform our operators staff into calm, creative & highly effective customer focussed teams. Marina Solutions Ltd comes highly recommended by my entire Sales & Marketing team, myself & of course numerous delighted mutual customers.

Steve Carter – Managing Director – Precor UK

Marina Solutions have provided SCL with a variety of sales and customer service training which all of our team have found motivating and a great help to them achieving their targets. I would recommend Marina Solutions to any company that wanted to motivate and inspire their teams as well as increasing sales and customer interaction. Marina has a way with the team and can engage, motivate and inspire people leaving them buzzing when they leave, we have seen the training have a huge impact on the individuals within our business leading to great results!

Marcus Headington – Operations Director – SCL

We recruited Marina on a consultancy basis to travel to Saudi Arabia and train our fitness and sales teams. The brief given to Marina was to improve our conversion rate of leads to members at our 2 fitness centres and also to increase non-membership income per head via secondary spend across all departments. We needed someone to inspire our teams, up skill our teams to improve communication and understand the benefits of rapport building and a needs analysis.

We needed an expert to work alongside the teams, offering support and ‘on the job’ coaching and mentoring. In Saudi Arabia, finding experienced female customer facing service and sales trained employee’s is challenging, so the skill sets of the teams needing training was very broad. A lot of our team being inexperienced in customer facing roles and working to achieve sales targets under pressure.

Marina truly inspired our teams to believe in themselves to have the confidence and ability to sell by building rapport and developing good relationships with the customers. We had only 2 days for the brief to be fulfilled but Marina planned and implemented thorough and culturally specific training sessions to the various departments and them coached them on the delivery in a working environment. The club managers have since implemented new sales processes in the prospect and member journeys. Following the training, we have seen an improvement in the conversion of toured members to sales; improvements in our customer service via high quality interactions at every level and a higher standard of member orientations with our trainers that subsequently convert into secondary spend.

I thoroughly recommend Marina for her sales & customer service training delivery, endless enthusiasm professionalism, preparation and her diverse & driven approach to get the very best out of a team.

Susan Cass – General Manager – Heights International – Riyadh Saudi Arabia

“Working with Marina is a real pleasure, she understands our training needs and delivers them to the team in a passionate and enthusiastic way that keeps the full team engaged and focused. We can track the increase in sales and service from her sessions. I would fully recommend her, just make sure that she still has enough time for my teams!”

Stuart Rosenberg – Director – Fitness4Less

Marina Thomas began working as a consultant with Central YMCAfit in April 2012. The original contract was for Marina to specifically work with the YMCAfit Sales Advisor team for a short project. Based on the quick turnaround of positive results I contracted Marina to continue working with YMCAfit for a longer term. Due to the success Marina’s appointment she went on to work with the Central YMCA Club sales team and completed a sales review for Central YMCA.We have experienced excellent results in Customer Care, soft skills training including rapport building and communication. Marina has supported the teams in setting up systems plus setting and monitoring KPI’s.Marina has learned the needs of our business and has offered advice which has resulted in securing new business.
Marina has set up various training sessions for the teams across the Central YMCA operations. The content is generic and would be appropriate for many organisations within different sectors.

Rob Johnson – Chief Operating Officer

“Having recently completed some training with Marina I cannot recommend her enough, it was fun and engaging from the off and by the end I felt inspired and in love with my job again! I really believe that all of the training session was useful, but in particular consistently presenting to colleagues. It’s a difficult thing to do but its only when we step out of our comfort zones that we improve.

Following the training I have felt more in control of meetings and will continue to ask that final question. I don’t think customers expect it and it has provided me some fantastic feedback.

Thanks again for a great training session, I really do hope we get to do the further training soon so I can continue to grow.”

Ray Redman – Sales Consultant – Precor Products UK

We have used the services of Marina for a number of years delivering training at our annual managers conference. The topics covered have been far ranging but usually centred around sales and customer service. The content, delivery and engagement has been outstanding on every occasion and the Club Managers have always left the sessions with useful information that they can then implement within their clubs.

Over the last 2 years we have further engaged with Marina to deliver specific leadership training to our senior management team who have also commented on the value and quality of the sessions delivered. We would certainly recommend Marina to anyone looking to engage with their senior level teams.

Paul Ramsay – Operations Director

Marina ran a “Customer Service & Selling” workshop for the entire BBC Club team ranging from Kitchen Porters to Senior Managers. She pitched the training perfectly engaging staff from all levels throughout the day with interactive activities. Her personable approach, drawing from her own experiences and those of the team allowed the staff to relate the training to their own roles. The feedback was that they came away feeling inspired and motivated to improve their customer relations.

Julia Kay  – Head of Sales and Marketing – BBC Club

Marina plays a pivotal role is setting up our membership salespeople for success as our training provider. Every session delivered ,whether it be in person or virtually, is engaging, detailed & on brief. Professional, reliable, flexible & a pleasure to work with. Highly recommend.

Anthony Heskins – National Sales and Openings Manager, The Village Gyms


Marina worked with us to create and then deliver a bespoke Everyone Active Customer Service Training programme, showing a real understanding and passion for our Brand. The 2-part programme consisted of customer service training across the whole team and then a day of customer service leadership training for the Managers.  Both parts were exceptionally well received; specifically, the Managers benefitted hugely from her support and on point delivery and has helped them develop their management style.  Marina would be a great fit for any further customer service or leadership training.

Lynne Clift – Regional Customer Relations & Business Manager, Everyone Active

 

Another excellent training session for the front line staff responsible for dealing with customer enquiries when our sports centres re-opened.

Marina delivered the course via zoom and still managed to make the training fun, relevant and specific to the needs of her audience.

Her charismatic style kept the audience engaged at all times and gave them the tools and confidence to deal with enquiries using a simple step by step process. The DISC profiling session also proved very popular with all who attended.

Archie Dick – Principal Officer, ANGUSalive

I would highly recommend working with Marina.

Having worked with Marina for 7 years she has been instrumental in the development of several key teams within the leisure centre. 

Initially Marina worked with us to develop our Customer journey and standards and supported us by delivering training to the entire leisure team.

Marina has worked with us to develop our leadership team and has provided one to one and group mentoring/coaching sessions which enabled me

as a manager to develop and nurture the best talent. 

She has worked with us on a strategic basis to identify key strengths which have allowed us to achieve targets. 

Rachel Williams – General Manager, Salt Ayre Leisure Centre

 

“Marina has become an important part of our sales management strategy. Her complete professional approach and larger than life personality are the perfect ingredients to engaging with staff to sell more.”

Graeme MacLennan – Marketing Manager – Parkwood Leisure

Marina brings a ray of sunshine into any room! She has outstanding people skills and is able to tailor her approach to the target audience. Her training and coaching is memorable and inspiring, bringing the best out of teams wishing to improve their performance. I have known Marina for more than 10 years and have seen first hand the positive changes she can bring to those she comes into contact with.

Tom Fairey – Development Director at Alliance Leisure

Marina Solutions worked with 1Life as our Customer Excellence consultant. Marina was instrumental in getting NPS up and running at 1Life and increasing our communication lines with our customers.

Marina also played a huge part in implementing a data capture strategy for the business by designing and monitoring reports to ensure that 1Life was asking for and capturing the correct data to communicate with our customers. Marina wrote and delivered training to inspire and motivate our staff to work as a team, capturing the data from our customers so that 1Life can put our customers 1st. 1Life will definitely be working with Marina Solutions in the future, in fact many members of staff ask ‘when is she coming again’?

“The analysis shows that during the months Marina was delivering the excellence training, specifically November, there are very positive uplifts in the targets! There was a 10% uplift during Marina’s training month.”

Neil King – Managing Director – 1Life

I contacted Marina at the start of 2017 and asked her to deliver customer service training across my contract in St Albans. Marina wrote bespoke and specific training literature to mine and my team’s requests. Marina delivers her training with great passion and keeps all group members engaged despite at times delivering training to large groups of people. We have seen immediate and sustained results with Marina’s training including positive net member movement month on month across all of my leisure facilities as well as great customer comments. I would strongly recommend getting in contact with Marina for customer service & sales support training.

Rob Cunningham – Director of Leisure at BH Live

Marina delivered training to 6 of our centres at YMCA St Paul’s Group (formerly YMCA London South West).

The training was really motivating for all our staff and has given them the confidence to deliver membership tours and deal with telephone enquiries.

Marina is a really great motivator, she enthused the whole team from front of house, to gym instructors through to our current sales staff and managers. It was really fantastic the way she shared her knowledge and expertise. This was evident when she was able to handle any questions raised by the staff attending the training. Our team came away from the training really fired up to deliver a tour.

Following the training it is really good to see how our team deal with new members that come into our centres by giving them the best possible customer service.

Angus Mc Gregor – Performance Quality and Business Analyst, YMCA St Pauls Group

Marina Thomas delivered sales, incoming calls and quality interaction training with the North Tyneside Council staff. She was energetic, invigorating and very inspiring. She managed to turn the whole teams perspective about sales and capturing leads around with all the staff who attended. Her training sessions are very interactive, fun and empowering. She challenged the teams in a way that bought about positivity and results. We were so impressed with her delivery style that we asked her to come back to deliver more training and can see this relationship continuing long term. Marina introduced a new way of working which pushed the teams out of their comfort zone, however, by doing this it increased the numbers of new customers who came through our doors! If you want a trainer who gets results and delivers in a way that brings every member of staff on board then Marina is your answer.

Bernie Wall – Contours Development Officer – North Tyneside Council

Whilst exploring the training and development needs of our Leisure Services Team, our colleagues in North Tyneside recommended Marina Solutions. We can honestly say that we are so pleased we took their advice and have never looked back.

From meeting Marina for the first time, she instantly puts everyone at ease and makes them feel comfortable in the training environment. All staff are given the confidence and motivation to take part in the training sessions and leave feeling positive and totally upbeat.Since receiving Sales and Recognising and Capturing Leads training, our membership figures have increased significantly and we are confident that this can be attributed to the first class training that Marina Solutions has delivered and our staff putting this into practice in their day-to-day role.
We continue to work with Marina Solutions and wouldn’t hesitate to recommend them to anyone thinking about investing in their staff training and business.

Gary Hoggeth -Leisure Services, South Tyneside Council.

The purpose of the training for us was to address some of the concerns that some staff had expressed upon returning to work post Covid-19 lockdown, particularly with regards communicating with customers. We met with Marina prior to the training to talk the session through and this enabled aspects to be tailored to our service and staff. Over 70 of our staff have been trained, via Zoom, and feedback we had was very positive.
Our staff developed skills in how to approach customers, adapting conversation based on various personalities and also ensuring that they were successful in delivering their messages.

Chris Wright – Operations Manager

This was the first time that we had worked with Marina but she certainly portrayed the levels of professionalism, expertise, and support that we have become accustomed to from TA6. The Covid Communication training was very different for our front house staff, both in terms of many of them using Teams for the first time and also the way in which the interactive nature of the delivery challenged their usual ways of working and thinking. Thank you TA6, I’m sure the session will be of value to us as we re-open to the public and face the challenges which that brings.’

Stuart Webb – Acting Service Manager, Walsall Sport & Leisure Services

company information

Unit 1, 43 Crouch Hall Road, London N8 8HH

T: 07758 076 723

E: marina@marinasolutions.co.uk

Company number: 11324770

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