Operations: Club Culture – Your Biggest Selling Point
The New Year is upon us and it’s time to take a hard look at the culture that has been created inside your club. Your club’s atmosphere is as integral a part of operations as the quality of equipment, staff and programming. The pulse of the club should be continuously monitored to ensure that you and your team are creating the culture envisioned.
Club culture is a key factor in a prospective member’s decision to choose you over the competition. We all have “one line descriptions” for clubs in our areas, and you need to be aware of how the community is categorizing you. All of the prevailing impressions that are left with the member begin with “club culture.”
Does your gym cater too heavily to a younger demographic? Are your trainers friendly, energetic and attentive to both clients and non-training members, or can they seem intimidating and distant? Is the majority of your programming geared towards senior members? Is your equipment outdated? Does your facility give the impression that management is not concerned with keeping up with current trends? These questions are just few surface issues that can translate into an entire club culture.
Is your facility unfriendly and systematic? Are the members interacting with each other? Many of these issues can be identified, and solved, by management being visible and accessible to the members. Your patrons are more likely to express concerns in a calm and constructive manner if they feel the culture lends itself to that type of communication. Likewise, your trainers and staff are more likely to present positive performance if you’ve established a culture of open communication with your team. This even applies to members who are overjoyed to be using the facility. They will sing your club’s praises from the rooftops if they feel appreciated and comfortable within the gym.
Club culture is something that is often overlooked or ignored when it should be at the forefront of every staff meeting and management decision-making process. This premise ties directly into your “grass roots” marketing efforts, and when the right club culture is created, it can act as your biggest selling point.
Gavin Reath is a personal training director for Meridian Fitness & Wellness.