The gym is not just a place to come in, work out and leave. It’s really just like a small town where everybody knows each other. Not every facility feels like this. It can be quite the opposite. Imagine walking in to a gym and the front desk staff greets you by name. You can exercise and socialize with other members. There’s always someone waving goodbye when you leave. How would you feel walking in to a gym like that? We do exist and this is part of our long term success. We’ve worked to create an environment that feels a little more like home.
Building a long term relationship with a client starts with a smile and handshake. You will never walk in to our facility without being greeted by a friendly face. I always make a point of introducing myself to new members. I encourage them to feel free to ask questions. You’d be surprised how often people tell me, “I feel embarrassed asking questions.” My response is, “There’s no such thing as a dumb question. If it’s a matter of safety then I’d rather you let me know.” It helps build a positive rapport. They do matter and I do care. That’s the message I want to get across.
I can’t tell you how many friendships have been built on a single introduction. Fifteen years later and it still feels like a social club. “I met this person. We talk every time we’re here. It helps pass the time on the treadmill.” Who knows who you’ll meet walking on a treadmill at the gym! It could be a new friend. I’ve learned people are more inclined to show up if they know someone is waiting for them. They are accountable to someone. This is why making friendships at the gym is also good for business.
How does creating community benefit your bottom line? We may be a small facility, but we have learned a big lesson. Getting healthy is not done alone. Having a supportive community of members and staff encourages long term business. Forging friendships is actually of benefit to you.
I often sit and listen to the hum of chatter while I’m sitting at my desk. I hear laughter. I hear deep conversations. I hear words of support and encouragement. What I really hear is people who care about each other. It makes me happy to be a part of it.