5 Lessons of Building Business in the Fitness Community
Building your business in the Health and Fitness space can be very inspiring and lots of fun. After all, you are working in an area that can make people a healthier version of themselves and while there are certainly some hard and emotional times for clients, there are also some incredible highs when you see people get results both mentally and physically. However it is a very populated space, especially in Sydney and lots of people want to get into the industry so you need to have a plan and be committed to doing the hard yards to make it work.
Below are 5 lessons that I have learnt while building a business in the fitness community:
1. HARD GOALS
HARD is a goal setting method that I like to use to ensure that I stick to them and see them though.
All of my goals have to be:
Heartfelt: If you set yourself a goal that you really care about, then you are much more likely to achieve it. If you don’t care, they why would you bother sticking to the plan in order to achieve it?
Animated: Can you visualise yourself achieving that goal? If you can see it, feel it, imagine it, then you will be motivated to achieve it
Required: You need to make achieving your goal a MUST. Book and pay for the NYC marathon, Buy the wedding dress in that size, Book a session with the business manager or business coach to help you commit to taking the next step in your business. Now you have to achieve it
Difficult: Difficult goals are often easier to achieve and way more inspiring. If the goal is easy, then it is more likely to be left on the ‘I’ll do it tomorrow/ next week/ next year’s list. Building a business can be considered to be a difficult goal.
When building up or starting your new business do you research. Is there a market for what you are selling? Do you need to create a market? Or if there is a new trend on the horizon that you should be jumping onto as well so you don’t get left behind?
Before launching Flow Athletic, Kate Kendall and myself travelled around LA and NYC to check out the latest trends in health and fitness. We already had our concept ready to go, but we decided to check out what was happening internationally before finalising our programs.
It’s good to always keep researching and learning so you can keep evolving our offering for your clients. You always want to be ahead of the game, but you also don’t want your service to get stale or boring as that is not how you retain clients.
If your business has staff, communication is so important. Schedule in team meetings, make sure the team is involved in some of the planning of the business as well as in some of the bigger decisions. It is important that your team have pride in their work, it’s important that they are involved and that they know that their opinion counts. You also want them to feel comfortable enough to give feedback (within reason). This is how you build a dream team. However it’s good to note that they don’t need to be involved in all planning, especially when it comes to the finances.
4. Forward Planning
Forward planning is so important and it is something that I take very seriously. I like to draft up an initial plan 12 months in advance but I am prepared to veer off track and change it up if I see an opportunity that would be better suited to my business. I revisit my plan monthly, then quarterly with the team to see what amendments we can make to it as well as what we have achieved, what we are yet to achieve, how that all went and what we can do better next time.
5. Time Management
When you run a business time management is so important as there are so many elements to consider, especially beyond your actual business and service such as salaries, super, tax, BAS etc.
I have a to-do list template that I use every week where I block out my time for certain tasks. Then once a month I schedule in business planning and the admin style tasks that I can’t outsource to a Bookkeeper.
On that note if you have the money it is a good idea to outsource the tasks that you're not great at and the ones that take your attention away from the actual business to others as it will take less time for them to do it (such as Accounting and Bookkeeping) and that way you can focus on building your business.
ABOUT BEN LUCAS
Ben is the owner and co- founder of Flow Athletic, an incredibly successful yoga and fitness studio based in Paddington. It is now known worldwide and they have a lot of internationals coming in to try out their classes. He was also named one of the 2017 ‘Men of Influence’ by Men’s Style magazine.
Ben also came up with the innovative Flow After Dark silent yoga disco concept in 2016, which has now held 9 sold out events across Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane. He has also created the Nightclub Spin, Sofa 2 Surf and 30 Days Clean concepts which are always huge hits and generate a lot of interest within the media.
In 2015 Flow Athletic won the Telstra Small Business of the Year Award and last year he was also profiled in the Optus business feature
Prior to getting into the fitness industry, Ben was a professional NRL player for the Cronulla Sharks and a number of other teams. After finishing his stint with the NRL, he went on to own three very successful personal training studios and during that time he also turned to Ultra Endurance running.
In the space of 5 years, he ran 35 marathons and 5 ultra marathons all over the world. Due to his interest in running, he then went on to train up 101 non- runners to run and complete their first marathon! A challenge he said he probably won’t take on again, however as a result Sofa2Surf was born. www.flowathletic.com.au