Pool-goers are typically looking for a laid-back ambiance when they visit their local pool. As a lifeguard, you appreciate these pool-goers the most. They’re reserved and have easy expectations to meet. While swimming pools may not have the echoing cries of seagulls like beaches, they can offer a sunny atmosphere, a soothing climate and the water’s refreshing touch. Unfortunately, this experience isn’t always guaranteed.
Some guests of the pool might not be on the same page as your calmer ones. Disruptive guests at the pool cause trouble by ignoring the pool rules and disrupting an enjoyable and safe environment for the other guests around them. Despite wanting to maintain the peace, you’ll have to know how to handle these disruptive pool guests accordingly.
8 Tips for Handling Disruptive Pool Guests
Your first and foremost responsibility as a lifeguard is to rescue those who have compromised their safety in any supervised body of water. It is also your job to prevent anything risky from happening in the first place. But as a lifeguard, you take on some other responsibilities as well.
One of these responsibilities is making sure that everyone in and at the pool is having a good time. Part of that responsibility includes handling the disruptive guests that might be ruining a good time. Here are some tips for how to manage these situations appropriately:
1. Know the Rules
Before you can enforce the rules, you have to know them. A couple of little kids talking a bit too loud might be a nuisance, but it’s best to treat them with kindness and ask them to quiet down rather than be too stern with them. Discouraging their fun entirely will only give them a bad outlook on the day and won’t reinforce a positive attitude amongst others.
2. Know the People
In a similar vein, it helps to have a rapport with your pool guests. You should aim to have a pragmatic and amicable relationship with all your customers, regular or otherwise. Doing this will ensure that you have the respect of your pool guests. Guests are more likely to listen to you if you don’t come off as an angry stranger.
3. Use Your Training
When you encounter a pool guest that truly is disruptive, your first step should be speaking up and giving the guest a warning about their behavior. An effective leader is firm with their rules, or the pool rules for this matter, and feels secure enough in their training to correct any rowdy behavior.
4. Keep It to Yourself
It’s generally not considered professional to involve others in the business you are qualified to handle. While the other pool guests are surely just as bothered by the disruptive guests as you are, it’s inadvisable to allow them to have any influence over the situation. After all, if the situation escalates, you’ll be responsible for whoever gets hurt, even if the attack is verbal.
5. Conduct Business as Usual
Once you notice a disruptive pool guest, it’s hard to pay attention to anything else. Do what you can to resolve this situation in the moment, but don’t let your other duties be led astray.
6. Keep Calm
Address the problem, but keep in mind that escalating the situation will only make things worse. Your disruptive guests, on the other hand, could very well escalate their behaviors. But, remember, it’s your job to keep everything running smoothly, not theirs.
Similarly, make sure your demeanor is non-confrontational. Your guest is already being disruptive, so chances are any additional aggression won’t be helpful. Plus, you never know what’s going on in the heads of other people. Being too confrontational with a guest could place you in an unsafe situation.
7. Call for Help, If Necessary
De-escalation should always be your first approach for handling disruptive guests. Unfortunately, it’s not a foolproof method. Sometimes, things won’t go your way no matter what you do. In that scenario, ideally, you should call for extra backup from staff. They can protect other guests from any conflicts. One of them may also be better equipped to take care of the disruptive guests.
If all fails, don’t hesitate the call the police. This is a proactive way of making certain nobody is in harm’s way. The presence of official law personnel has the advantage of shutting down any nonsense, quickly and efficiently.
8. Catalog Any Incidents
Hopefully, your place of work has a standard procedure in place to record past incidents. Having an account and detailing the specifics of a situation works to avoid another situation of the same caliber. You’ll have an idea of what needs to happen next time a similar incident occurs.
How to Handle Yourself at the Pool
Lifeguarding comes pre-packaged with a plethora of stressful situations. Just like any other customer service job, you’re obligated to deal with the oncoming opinions and complaints of a wide range of personality types. What’s more, as a lifeguard, you’re also partially accountable for the lives of your patrons and the risk they expose themselves too. With so many factors out of your control, you can only hope that you perform your role to the best of your ability.
One thing that is in your control, however, is performing your duties with the right equipment at your helm. At the very least, this won’t be what’s at fault when problems arise. You’ll be eliminating one or a few items from the list of things that could go wrong. Whether your needs are for basic apparel, like swimsuits and goggles, or rescue gear, like megaphones to first aid kits, The Lifeguard Store has you covered.
Why shop with us? We have an invested interest in the aquatic community. Nationally and locally, we sponsor initiatives in your favor. We also have excellent customer service, a large inventory and fast shipping. More than simply selling items, we care about your service.
Our items are customer satisfaction price guaranteed — that means if you notice a product exactly like ours at a different store for a lower price, we’ll refund you the difference. We know you don’t need anything else to worry about. Give The Lifeguard Store a zealous look from under your visor, and you won’t be disappointed. We’ll be your one-stop-shop!
Learn More Lifeguard Tips:
- How to Avoid Sunburn as a Lifeguard
- Tips for Managing and Positioning Your Lifeguards
- How to Stay Safe on the Lifeguard Stand
- How to Stay Warm as a Lifeguard When It’s Cold Outside
- How to Get Ready for Lifeguard Season
- What You Need to Know About Shallow Water Lifeguarding
- Tips for Maintaining Focus and Improving Scanning for Lifeguards