Business is business and that is what every Gym Owner and fitness professional needs to remember. The dream of “turning your passion into a profession to never work a day” is good in theory, but this requires a solid business plan to ensure the dream remains viable.

Countless gyms and Personal Training studios have failed as a result of being run by fitness professionals who have sound knowledge and passion for the fitness industry, but without any business knowledge to apply these skills in a profitable way.

The result of this misguided passion has led to an overwhelming demographic of “failed fitness professionals” which has established fitness careers as “high risk” of unemployment. Predictably, the domino effect has meant that there has been a significant and steady decrease of students enrolling in fitness courses across Australia.

The high numbers of qualified fitness professionals “failing” at business within the first and second year of operation has been largely attributed to a lack of business sense. This loss has forced change in all areas of the industry starting with the course providers.

Between 2015-2016 the Australian Department of Education restructured the national requirements for the Diploma of Fitness. Prior to this, the course was heavily science based with the majority of the qualification focused on extensive knowledge of human anatomy.

While the importance of the science has remained, the core focus of the diploma of fitness in Australia is now heavily business based to equip business owners and fitness professionals with the tools they require to establish a successful, financially viable business.

A common attitude in the business world that encourages people to continue to invest money and keep a sinking business afloat is: “Expect t o run at a loss for the first three years of business, then you will start to see returns.”

I hear personal Trainers and Gym owners all the time saying “yeah, this business is costing me an arm and a leg but it’s only my second year so if I can just hold out for one more year it’ll be making a profit.” Or “You have to spend money to make money.” This approach is misguided and takes the business mentality completely out of context.

The truth of the matter is that the first few years of establishing a business should cost money because if you are smart about building an empire you should be “investing” or “reinvesting” whatever money is coming in to continue to grow the business.

This costs money and the ROI (Return On Investment) directly correlates to how smart your investments are and how you capitalise on them to bring the money back with interest. If you as a business owner are burning through your savings splashing out on additional costs without a solid business plan you are running blind. Smart business is not guess work and little “luck” is involved in making good business decisions. For anyone currently treading water waiting for that “third year” to clock over before your business suddenly BOOMS, here is some free advice: “You are in for one hell of a *surprise.” (*Bankruptcy)

If you as a business owner or fitness professional have got caught up in the excitement of chasing “maximum reach” and “cold lead generation” ask yourself how you have converted this marketing strategy into an effective sales tool which has measurable profit margins to gauge the effectiveness of this campaign?

If you cannot answer this question honestly it is likely you are simply throwing money into sponsored adds to gain exposure without any profitability forecasted or ensured. This is not smart business, this is ego driven experimentation that could have a detrimental impact on your brand and the success of your business.

All of this takes time and knowledge to ensure your business is credible and professional across the board. You are not expected to do everything on your own. Investing in a business professional to work with you on your vision is highly recommended.

As with every facet of the fitness industry: the greatest investment you can make is yourself! Upskilling in courses to expand your knowledge and expertise is highly recommended as is playing to strengths. I have been in the fitness industry for close to 20 years, I have been a personal Trainer for several years and have operated my own business and XL Personal Training brand for over 3 years.

I attribute my success to my passion, innovation and my professionalism. When I tracked the industry trend and predicted the national fitness course overhaul, I completed my advanced diploma of business with the Australian Careers College to use that qualification as Recognition of Prior Learning so that I could focus solely on the anatomy and training styles in the fitness diploma. This proved to be a very time and cost effective approach as it allowed me to perfect my business model with business industry experts who I had access to as mentors and free business advisors.

I am now one of only a handful of business owners in the fitness industry worldwide who have partnered with reputable, internationally recognised and respected brands to offer a complete service to my clients and competitors. In addition to specialising in niche fields for my personal training clients across all platforms, I am also a business advisor who operates a “white label” business model mentorship. For enquiries related to how I can help you set yourself and your business up for success, please contact me on Taz@xlpt.com.au for a confidential consultation. White label business models star t from as little as $500 AUS.

If you want to maximise your profits in minimal time, invest in a business professional who can build your empire on a solid business model, make the call.

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