21 Rules for a Gym Owner to Achieve True Success

rules for a gym owner

Everybody wants to get better. It’s just in our human nature. This list below is a compilation of what I’ve learned from working with countless gym owners over the last few years. It’s certainly not exhaustive but it includes a good sampling of things I’ve experienced. It doesn’t matter if you use this list as a guide, a checklist, a coaching tool, or as a list of to do’s; the key is that you’re paying attention to these things if you truly are pursuing success as a business owner.

  1. Get crystal clear on what makes your gym different from every other gym in your area.
  2. Don’t compromise on the big things like your values, but compromise on everything else.
  3. Develop the habit of including in your budget paying yourself from the very beginning; and create a plan to get to your goal of paying yourself what you are worth.
  4. It’s tempting to trade membership for services, don’t do it.
  5. Know and track your important numbers consistently, or hire a good accountant.
  6. Get out of your office and ask people who walk through your doors how they are really doing.
  7. Don’t have a member or a family member build your website.
  8. Be sure to write thank you notes to those who’ve benefited you and/or your business.
  9. Squirrel money away for those times when your business will need it, because those times will come.
  10. If you have a business partner, hire an attorney to document your partnership agreement, even (and especially) if you are good friends.
  11. Plan each day as if it’s your first, but live it as though it’s your last.
  12. Make competition irrelevant by offering the best service anyone in your area can find.
  13. Understand that your members have things going on outside the gym that affect their personalities inside the gym.
  14. Pay your Coaches a wage that doesn’t make them have to look for another job.
  15. It will feel good to talk about someone who has offended you. Don’t.
  16. Be mindful of always taking care of your own health above everything else. If you’re not regularly smiling and laughing, hit the reset button.
  17. Get out of your gym at least once a week and meet another business owner.
  18. Don’t do things like cleaning your floor so you can avoid the hard things like building your business.
  19. Learn from other people every day, but fight comparing yourself with someone else.
  20. Remember that the sun always shines after every storm.
  21. Know that the easy way, while tempting, is rarely the path to success.

Julie Weldon
Julie Weldon is on the leadership team of 321GoProject. Her diverse background includes being a cake designer, coaching basketball, traveling to 13 different developing countries to do volunteer work on a year-long trip, working in the not-for-profit world for 10 years, starting two businesses, working as a People & Change consultant for PricewaterhouseCoopers, taking a product to market (and “failing”, only to get back up and do it a second time), and working as a business coach/consultant to small businesses with her company, A Salty Rim. Her core belief is that it’s always about the people no matter if the company is large or small. Contact her at julie@321goproject.com.
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