WHY THE COMMERCIAL GYM MODEL IS SO F@CKED UP - PART 3.
What about CrossFit affiliates and other functional fitness-style gyms which aren’t franchises?
Interestingly enough, CrossFit gyms—which offer a much more effective way of getting fit— experience similar numbers to the franchise model. With some notable exceptions (In Vancouver, we have some well-run CF gyms, probably due to legacy and the real estate market providing a higher barrier to entry), Client churn rates are a fraction better—60 percent and higher—and coaches last a bit longer than in the franchise model on average, though very few coaches stick around for 5, 10 15 plus years pursuing coaching as a professional career.
There is a weak client development process - how you bring new clients in and keep them there.
There is a weak coach development process and a broken compensation model - how they learn, what they can earn, and how to make the career path sustainable.
There is a weak business development process - how to create the systems so that client and coach development align so that the business can grow and all parties win together.
The entire focus is on getting new leads and new clients in the door, throwing them into a broken model, and hoping that both they and the coaches stick around long enough to pay the bills. Gym owners spend thousands of dollars on marketing and client acquisition, yet those clients funnel right out of the back door.
None of this is sustainable.
Again this begs the question, is it ethical to fail both clients and coaches this way just because ‘it has always been this way?
We now ask you to have a long look at your business model.
Is your client development process detailed or simple?
Are you doing professional one-on-one client consults?
Are you doing a well-thought-out one-on-one client assessment (our data points to 3 sessions as a minimum)
Are you doing 15 - 18 personal training sessions before they go to a group class?
Is your coach compensation model detailed or simple? (hint: by the hour plus a % for PT sessions is simple)
Are you paying coaches for performance?
Are you paying them to find new clients?
Are you paying them to retain new clients?
How much revenue does each of your coaches bring into the gym?
Does your coach compensation model really achieve what you want it to achieve?
Have you ever explored a different way to compensate your coaches?
Is your coach development process detailed or simple?
Is your coach development mostly technical training?
Have your coaches done professional enrollment and communication training (i.e. sales training)?
Have your coaches done business development training?
Have your coaches done client retention training?
Have your coaches done client recruitment training?
Have you coaches done personal development training?
Is your business development process detailed or simple?
Have you done personal development training?
Have you done professional enrollment and communication training (i.e. sales training)?
Have you researched business models and chosen the right one for your long-term success?
Do you track business KPIs and metrics for success monthly?
Do you have a clear avatar, message, brand, and service that you deliver? Consistently?
Have you set up systems for your coaches for client tracking, relationships, revenue and retention?
Do you know the value of your business now and how to increase that value over the next 3-5-10 years?
If the answer to most of these questions is no, then ask yourself, “Why?”
When we ask gym owners that question, we almost always get the answer: “That's the way we were told to do it” or “it's just the way it has always been done.”
Is there a better way to run your business than the status quo? Is there a better way to do it?
That is a question we have been asking ourselves for 18 years, and it has led to a relentless pursuit of excellence in a gym that is both sustainable and ethical.
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