5 Qualities of a Successful Gym Owner

5 Qualities of a Successful Gym Owner
By Justin Hanover

By Justin Hanover

Courtesy FRNation.com

If you’ve been a gym owner for some time it’s likely that your ideas of success as a gym owner and entrepreneur have shifted. You may have started out with lofty goals to build a mid-6-figure business with hundreds of clients. Maybe now, that has shifted to creating a gym that doesn’t eat up 70+ hours a week of work. Wherever you’re at in your Fitness Business Owner’s Journey there are many qualities that you need to reach your goals. I am going to talk about the most important qualities you need to become successful. Some of the qualities are more personal and others are more related to your business.


1. Resilience and Grit


Successful entrepreneurs like you develop resilience and grit through experiences. Some are predisposed to having more resilience and some need time to build it. You develop this through failure and success. As a gym owner, you know that there are obstacles to overcome and regular setbacks on getting to your goals. How you deal with those challenges will set you apart from the competition.

For example, say you’re going over last month’s marketing metrics. You see there is a steady decline. You don’t panic even though you know that it’s going to take ramping up your advertising efforts and even hiring someone to do it. It takes resilience, not to be thrown off by those types of obstacles. 


Try and think of the biggest setback you’ve had in your career. Did your landlord raise your facility rent when you were going through a slow period? Maybe you lost several staff members at once and you froze. What helped you through those setbacks? It was your grit, your resilience, and your determination. Whenever our clients get stuck in a bad situation we remind them of who they are, what they’ve accomplished so far, and support them in dealing with their problems. So if you’re ever left doubting yourself or scared that the whole thing is going to fall apart, just remember what you’ve conquered thus far. The hard times only strengthen you for the future. 


2. Expert Communication


Communication is arguably one of the most important skills, not only in business but in life. To be a successful gym owner you need to be a great communicator. It affects everything that you do in your business. Communication isn’t just about talking and conveying information. It’s about listening and receiving information too. You want to learn how to listen with intent. This means that when someone else is communicating you are listening to not just their words but their intention or concern. If you can pinpoint that underlying intention then you address everything they need.

It could be with a client, a team member, or the entirety of your market. (Check out this post to learn self-management and team management skills.)

For example, you talk with a few of your clients about their goals. They all say they want to lose weight. But what’s the intention behind that? Do they feel embarrassed in a swimsuit? Are they mad at themselves for letting themselves go?


If you can understand that and solve that pain with your front-end offer or core offer then you are going to be having a massive impact. You can use that same understanding to create better messaging to get more ideal clients. 


Understanding that underlying intent is all about being curious, asking questions, and getting truly connected to your people. You can do this with your team and your clients.


3. Love what you do


This one is crucial! You have to love what you do to be successful. Why? Think of the jobs that you’ve had that you just absolutely hated. That you were only there because you needed to make money. Did you do your best work? Were you creatively engaged? Did you radiate excitement to the customer or your co-workers?

If you don’t love what you do, you’re not going to put everything you have into it. You’re not going to go deep and find every possible way you can help your clients. One thing you need to be aware of is the changes that you will go through overtime. You may start your career with a ton of passion and love for fitness and helping people. It may ebb and flow throughout your career and that’s okay. But the thing you need to watch out for is burnout. If you overwork yourself, it can totally kill your love and passion for what you do. So go slow, enjoy the journey, and build a business around the lifestyle you want.


4. Market Yourself


In the early stages of running your business marketing may feel uncomfortable. You’re just starting to put yourself out there and you might be getting stuck and you’re thinking “What will people think of me?”. Put those thoughts to rest as quickly as possible because your marketing is what is going to get you clients, and pay your bills. So get comfortable with spreading the word about what you do. Your marketing could be through creating a referral program, starting an email list, or using social media.

Now, if you’re later into your career then you’re probably more comfortable with marketing. Just make sure that you are always reevaluating the basics. Who is your ideal customer? Is your offer built for them? Are you tracking the most important metrics?

Wherever you’re at in your career, you can use support when it comes to marketing. 

If you believe in your service, in your gym, then it’s your duty to market your brand effectively to let the consumer know of all their options. Go for it!


5. Open-Minded 


Successful business owners are willing to go out of their comfort zone and try new things. It’s the only way that you can expand as a business owner. It’s important to do your research and know who or what you’re getting involved with and make a well-informed and data-backed decision. You need to have this type of mentality “I don’t have all the answers”. The greatest entrepreneurs don’t have all the answers but they will look outside themselves to find the answer. The truth is… “you don’t know what you don’t know.” Which means that there are so many things that you can’t possibly know… and they might be the solution to your problem. Having an open mind will allow you to access that information because you will entertain different options, ideas, and solutions. 

Fitness Revolution helps fitness business owners build and scale successful businesses they love running. Through Strategic Business Coaching, powerful tools and metrics, and live training events, FR is able to help these studio owners tackle their biggest, most pressing challenge. For more information, visit https://frnation.com/.

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