Gym Owners: You Aren’t Selling Fitness
You are not selling fitness.
We repeat: You are not selling fitness.
People may initially come to your gym because they want to get fitter, to look better, to get stronger. Those are great goals, and will serve those folks well in terms of their physical health.
But what people need (even if they don’t know they need it) is connection. They need a tribe.
This undeniable need for belonging, to be a part of a tribe, lives deep inside of our beings. But, as Johann Hari explains in his must-watch Ted Talk called This could be why you’re depressed or anxious from July 2019, we’re living in a time where tribes no longer exist. They’ve disbanded.
Here’s what he says:
“We are the loneliest society in human history. There was a recent study that asked Americans ‘Do you feel like you’re no longer close to anyone?’ And 39 percent of people said that described them...
Just like bees evolved to live in a hive, we’ve evolved to live in a tribe. And we are the first humans ever to disband our tribes. And it’s making us feel awful. But it doesn’t have to be this way.”
You, as a gym owner and coach, must be abundantly aware of the power that you have to help people. And not help people get fit (although that’s a wonderful byproduct of owning a gym) but help people become a member of a tribe again.
Your gym is responsible for reassembling the disbanded tribes of the world. Treat it as a tribe, and nothing less, so you can help the people around you live SIGNIFICANTLY better lives.
There are two things to do right now to start treating your gym business like a tribe, a shift that will significantly improve the quality of your community and the quality of your finances:
Learn (and never stop learning) what it means to lead a group of people. There are tons of books, articles, and videos on this topic. Read constantly on the subject of leadership. Read like your business depends on it—because it does. And certainly read Tribal Leadership by Dave Logan, John King, and Halee Fischer-Wright. Maybe even read that one first.
Teach your coaches and staff the most important things you learn from studying leadership. Help them with these concepts. Show them how to lead a tribe and what it means. Teach them like your business depends on it—because it does. Every staff meeting should have a component about leading the tribe.
Build and nurture your tribe. The world needs you to.