The Gym Owners Blog/Podcast/Everett from CrossFit Bytown

Everett from CrossFit Bytown

Friday, January 20, 2023

noname png


people, gym, coaches, owners, business, run, money, pandemic, months, realizing, pay, grow, clients, classes, thinking, idea, empowering, tyler, build, members


  • What’s the hardest lesson Everett has learned as a gym owner? - 0:14
  • ​Who you are as a person is not the gym - 1:42
  • ​How did you get started in this business? - 4:21
  • ​Everett’s thoughts on the impact of the pandemic on the business - 7:11
  • ​Using Covid as an excuse to reevaluate everything he does - 8:26
  • ​Why it’s important for gym owners to take on a once in a generation challenge - 9:39
  • ​What has kept you in this as this process has gone on? - 12:01
  • ​What the results would be if governments would pay for people’s gym memberships as though they were paying for every single human being on earth - 15:16
  • ​How good it feels when you have an idea you’ve spent a lot of time mulling over - 19:57
  • ​What is the biggest thing that you’ve changed in the last 18 months? - 20:56
  • ​Coaching should be an entrepreneurial endeavor - 25:05
  • ​The importance of having the right people in your gym - 27:30
  • ​Why you need to own your own tools - 32:47
  • ​Making time for yourself and identifying where you can get it - 35:49
  • ​Your goal is to train other people to do your job - 38:07
  • ​The most valuable mentors for Everett - 39:51


Tyler 00:14

Welcome Everett, Everett, what's the hardest lesson you've had to learn as a gym owner?

Everett 00:20

Definitely, that wouldn't be one that's recent if it's not all about you. And basically, that one's kind of all encompassing is, don't take things personally, if somebody wants to leave your gym, even after nine years of still doing that and ask for help you don't, or you're not the one that has to do anything, it's getting the right people in the right place to help you. And that the gym is not you. It's the gym, you're a separate entity, to and getting people basically kind of setting people up to get help you as a team instead of trying to do everything on your own.

Tyler 00:55

That is that that answer you had was like to not take it personally when people leave? Or if people say no, man did, I just ate it on that one for a long time. Because I think we put so much into it as coaches your identity is who you are as a coach. And so we like to build that into our business. And someone's saying, No, we're walking away, man is that hurts.

Everett 01:15

It's still hard on yours. But it's a lot less than it's more understandable.

Tyler 01:21

Yeah, well, it's fun that what a lot of people need to do is get oriented. The other people have other needs, your clients have needs and wants and hobbies, and not all of them are gonna like the same music. I like the style of training. I like some of them just aren't gonna like me. You know, I mean, if you put your eye in a room with 100 people like that, if we're doing greatest 70 of them, like us could tolerate

Everett 01:42

One of the hard parts to understand is like, you might be the friendliest person in the world. And guess what? Some people might not like you because you're super friendly.

Tyler 01:48

Yeah, right. Yeah.

John Fairbanks 01:50

They'll actually not like you because you're super friendly. Yeah. Yeah. One thing that I did like you said, was the idea that who you are as a person is not the gym. And I think because it's your A lot of times, I think a lot of folks are like, this is their baby. So it almost becomes like, well, the gym is me, I am the gym. Like what was that grace.

Everett 02:16

So this is the one that I noticed recently, because out here we just, I'm in Ontario in Canada, and we've been extremely strict with all the lockdowns and everything like that. And we just passed a couple months ago, like a vaccine passport system. So basically, in order to go to the gym, you have to be vaccinated. And a lot of the gym owners, it was like the last straw and they're like, Oh, I'm against vaccination, blah, blah, blah. And they took an open stance personally about it representing their gym. And it cost them like sometimes people did like a radio interview and said, I'm not following this. So like 50 members dropped off the next day. And understanding that, like you can have your personal opinions. But if you're making your money and paying your mortgage through your gym, it's probably not the smartest thing to sabotage both of them. You could still have your strong opinions but realize these are my personal feelings and business business. This is what happened to make money.

Tyler 03:06

Yeah, plus a guy can always Jesus don't publicly put it that way. If a guy's got a livelihood and you're free and clear, and you want that's your Hill to die on, go for it. But man if I gotta eat, I can't. I can't be trading that I've put this for the same reason I can't cuss like a sailor in front of my morning class. These are mostly housewives. You know what I mean? Like, you know, there's one that doesn't know your audience. Yeah, you just have to kind of know that. Like, I want a general population audience. And I don't want it divided on some philosophical or political matter. And by the way you can. But if your market doesn't give you enough people that fit that bill, then you're going to eat it and it just doesn't work. So if you need to cross those boundaries in your market and have people from both sides have some issue, you kind of have to keep your mouth shut on it. And it's tough because guys like me, I keep my mouth shut about anything. So. So that's that, that's a really hard lesson to learn, I guess. Some of us probably would have learned that when we were younger, it was like just some talk about to shit dude, nobody wants to hear it. But I don't know, I think I think a lot of people learn that the hard way. And I don't think there's anything good nor bad, but what outcomes do you want to come from? And if in the end, you want your gem open? God you kind of got it. You just gotta play along like nobody likes paying frickin sales taxes, but geez, you just kind of gotta do it, or else someone's gonna come and knock. And

Everett 04:21

Yeah, in the last 18 months, this has probably been despite being in business for nine years. I'd say that the last 18 months have been the hardest, fastest lessons and the fastest changes. Basically, I've made more kinds of decisions, mistakes and kinds of corrections in the last year and a half than I have in the first basically like eight years of business.

Tyler 04:42

How did you get started in this business?

Everett 04:45

Like a lot of people, kind of, as we're saying earlier, kind of the same origin story. Ever since I was a kid I was when I was in high school and stuff. I was kind of fat and overweight, so I decided to make a change. I basically fixed myself and realized I can fix others and started running into stores thinking that was the answer with supplements back in like the 90s. That was all about how creatine was just coming out and thinking that that's what really made the difference. And after several years in that industry realize that it's mostly lies and Shams, and empty promises. So I decided to get into personal training, then found out basically years later that my wife was pregnant on the way. So I'm like, I was wanting to open a gym. So it was kind of now we're never so open when she was six months pregnant. And basically, I did it exactly the way that the original CrossFit did it, I'd started. I think it was not even a 700 square foot gym. It was sticky. 100 bucks a month for rent. And basically like no loans, no nothing, just cash like for barbells to rowers, and slowly kind of expanded within a year, I already grew over 200 members and outgrew the place, so it just kept on moving up from there.

Tyler 05:49

Yeah, that's a really sweet way. I always, I always appreciate that start where someone's like, oh, just I start by having some clients, and then I start with a space that I need for those clients. And you just, you grow organically. It's a very different game coming in neck deep with that.

Everett 06:05

Yeah, I don't think honestly, I don't think the way that I opened is even possible anymore.

Tyler 06:09

Yeah. Well, it really depends, like a person has to really start up you definitely couldn't start with a gym. Being the end in mind, it really has to start with just who you're going to Coach, how are you going to make money coaching? And from there, like the gym just becomes a need another step along the way for you to to continue coaching or are really to scale up. But it's very, I do think I do think you're right, especially in a lot of places where property values just are insane.

Everett 06:35

That's the issue here is like you're not finding anything else for under like, four or five grand even for a tiny place. So you already have to have a big base of clientele just to even afford the rent.

Tyler 06:44

Yeah, yeah, that's gnarly. It almost can encourage a guy to go non-brick and mortar as much as possible, or remote or try to travel to or just really strip it down. There's a lot of interesting models that I've seen come up like to adapt to that demand was like, fuck me, there's just no way to make this work for six grand a month rent when you don't have anybody. Yeah, if I don't have enough clients to cover that this is a bad way for me to start my business. I'm just gonna, we're all gonna start for two or three or four years.

John Fairbanks 07:11

Something you just mentioned, Tyler was interesting. And the idea of how like everybody now where that almost exacerbates everyone's move from having like a brick and mortar location and wanting to be able to be virtual right or distance or whatever. But like COVID, it would probably be a really strong argument that like the pandemic itself pushed a lot of people in that direction, too. But the one thing that points out is every year, you're talking about this from a totally different perspective, which is the idea that property value is so expensive, that it almost is impossible to do what you said you were able to do. Yeah, and I would almost say that like, okay, then all the pandemic did was highlight that problem and just exacerbate the shit out of it. Just be like, Whoa, this is a huge problem. Everett, are you finding that you said you had to learn and grow and do a lot like more in the last 18 months? And make changes than you have in the last nine years? Do you feel like that COVID Or the pandemic just really, like put a magnifying glass over the business and forced you to like reckon things in the gym that maybe always were there, but never was it just like, like on fire?

Everett 08:26

Yeah, it's pretty much exactly that. I pretty much used kind of COVID as an excuse in a positive way for everything. Like we need to rearrange the schedule, why COVID COVID changed things. And I just use it to reevaluate literally everything I'm doing like, Okay, why do we do Sunday classes, and then kind of reevaluate? Why do we charge this much? Why do we use this software like, and I just basically, like, slowly kind of just a checklist going over? Everything we do to find out like, is it still viable? What we're doing, why did we do this to begin with? And is there a more efficient way of doing it or a cheaper way, or a better way of kind of doing things and I've been slowly going through basically, everything we're doing to try and basically improve things because after like nine years, we were stagnant on some things and just like a lot of businesses like well, why did we do this? Oh, because we did it the last time where we did it the last place and are those kinds of habits good or bad? Just got kind of carried over versus saying like, is it worthwhile to do this? Is it because you're a better person to do this? Is there a better way of hiring staff or running classes everything so it just basically tried to revamp everything just to question everything we're doing.

Tyler 09:39

That's like a strategy I really love too because I think it's important for gym owners to do this. You were forced by a once in a generation pandemic kind of you know that to like shit, I gotta start really thinking of this. But what I really like is that you did go through every process, every step, every philosophy, every scheduled thing, like every single thing you do with the thing in mind. I want to make sure I'm not doing this just because we always have done it this way. And things like that you can really like to streamline every aspect of your operation and like to retune everything towards what needs to be done and also like, does this fit with what I want to be? It's like a real objective, objective assessment of it. And I think it's, I think that's really, really a critical piece for a lot of gym owners to take on.

Everett 10:23

Well, that and the markets completely changed. Like, if you're just holding on to like, I want to things go back to normal by just hold off another six months, whatever, I can go back to normal, well, things might not go back to normal, it really depends on kind of where you are, but with us being mostly like a government town, and none of the government workers are actually really going back to work. And I'm in the downtown area, which used to be filled with government buildings. So our market has completely changed. We can't do the same things that we used to do. Or we've pretty much lost the core of our BC membership.

Tyler 10:53

Yeah, well, that's a piece that we've seen, you know, if you remember, I remember when it first kind of came up, and they had first shut down chips like March, April 2020, you know, and we had a lot of Rumblers. What does this mean? How many of these places are going to close and there was a piece and I know this thing stretched out a lot longer than I think even anybody would have expected but the really valuable thing that I pointed out then was like there's a lot of businesses in this world who are resilient enough financially their model like the way they save money, how they operate, the way they run their costs, cashflow who are able to absorb like a big hit for a couple months, you know what I mean? Like and but we'd really really expose the the gym, the fitness industry, the brick and mortar fitness industry to how lean and how unprepared a lot of these these businesses were for adversity, and what it's like Jesus, all this martyrdom that we've done for a decade of like just getting by to save some money and just like running on the cheap and keeping money in the business so we can not put much into ourselves all of a sudden now when this goes up, it's guys that own the gyms are the ones paying the real price. Everybody else saves money dropping the gym membership, you got a family to feed, you know,

Everett 12:01

classic stuff like, Oh, if you have 100 members at $20 a month you're making tons of money and they they just do that that basic napkin math and not realizing it's nowhere close to that

Tyler 12:11

math baby. It's my favorite software math. Everybody does this math goes, Oh, you're probably gonna kill it. It is like this works.

Everett 12:18

Nobody really gets into this other than like, people like a brick in New York City or something like nobody gets into this to basically make tons of money and retire early awesomeness. It's a labor of love.

Tyler 12:28

Yeah, but I do. Like the people take the opportunity just out of necessity. It's always necessary, right and took the opportunity to go Alright, now I got to start thinking this way, I got to start setting my sights a little bit differently. Let's revamp everything. What has kind of kept you in the game as this process has gone on?

Everett 12:48

Basically helping people that's, that's what I've always done, I got into this kind of helping myself. And it's especially with all the stuff we've done recently with strong fit and everything over the years and I've evolved more from just the physical aspect of training but understanding the emotional, the kind of the nervous system. I think our government failed a ton during this, these pandemics by not offering health advice or just telling people to get out and walk or to exercise. And so I've that was my thing is just trying to help people get through the physical and emotional impact of all of the stress. And these changes have had on people trying to help people kind of get through this and realize, it's like, don't give up, you can make these changes. It's really not that hard to help to get to the other side of this. And, and despite all the obstacles always thrown in our way. I've always taken it basically as a challenge. Okay, well, they won't let us do this. Okay, I'll figure out a way to get this done. Or like, useful as everybody else did stuff online, which everybody hated after the first month, but just figuring out something to keep people motivated, moving and just thinking of everything. This is just like an injury. You're just trying to maintain yourself until we can get over this and then we can kind of go back to thriving.

Tyler 14:10

Yeah. What I noticed too, is like, there's like you said, I think I think systemically as a society, we've dropped the ball in this pandemic, because there was not as much attention paid on health as it should be. And of course, that's a played out thing that everybody is his guess kind of blows was, but I really believe that like hope in this situation where hope lies in this is in health, and that we were only hearing fear and pharmaceutical solutions. And that's a real disappointment, I think. Nobody was saying, Oh, here we are almost two years in a year and a half. I was like, how many people's health has deteriorated by 10 to 20% in his last 18 Oh, not a lot. A lot. 10 to 15% is probably the standard. This is worse than most people

Everett 14:54

would be like how many people either stayed the same over the last year or improved? Very, very few almost everybody got worse to some degree. So and this is kind of part of the issue is basically it's just seeing people in was something that was completely preventable seeing nobody really like the regular healthy unaffected people still getting major negative effects out of this. Yeah.

Tyler 15:16

Now I would love to see what the results would be if governments would get involved in paying for people's gym memberships as though they're paying for every single human being on Earth to get vaccinated, as though those two things aren't related. I'm in regards to your reading now. And I think that I think I think as much as the libertarian and me doesn't like that, I'm like, Well fuck it, if they're going to do something. I'm into that, I guess. But I do think that that's the thing that gym owners now need to be open, we need to fight to be open, you gotta do what you do to play within the rules to be open. But then your job is to deliver health. And yeah, there're some people that couldn't die on the hill because of the politics of it. But God, if you just get the people in your door healthier, you're doing the thing you're doing the thing that everybody else says that they're doing, everyone says they want to be doing is making a difference, and nobody fucking is. But those out here that are really doing it are really, really doing it. I think that's exceptional.

Everett 16:08

That's where I'm like, You know what, the bigger people like the big global gyms that have tons of money and power, I'm like, they're going to be fighting with a louder voice than I can to get open because they're losing more money than I am. So I'm worrying about my people doing the best I can for my people. And that's what I'm doing. That's all I'm worried about.

John Fairbanks 16:25

And I think it's worth noting, for everybody that's watching or listening that ever, it's not from the United States. So ever, it's out of Canada. So it's interesting, because we're gonna have, we're gonna have an international crowd. But when you hear people like, there's some similar grievances here, like, it doesn't matter whether you're from Australia, the United States, or Canada, like you start to hear the stories that are super similar. So it's, it's definitely one of those things where Tyler and I, again, take us back to why we were doing all this? And I think Everett, I even talked to you about the idea of really growing a gym owners movement, six or seven months ago. Yeah. And it was this idea of, there are so many people that are having this collective experience, that are all over the world that are experiencing very, very similar things or similar struggles. And yet, it's just like, Dude, I just gotta make it to tomorrow.

Everett 17:22

Well, even crossed, it's doing that now with their, what is it called roundtables that they're doing. So they're starting to basically do like monthly meetings with you get a bunch of affiliate owners in basically chatting about kind of what's going on what works for them, what doesn't work for them, because they're understanding that it doesn't matter kind of where you are, we're all generally kind of facing the same problems to one degree or another. And the more ideas we have for this space, everybody's going to come up with better it's like, not like, it's, it's us against everybody else. It's any ideas, we come out of this, and we figure out how to do things better, everybody's gonna succeed out of this, and we're the ones the gym owners are the ones who can make the difference with the the people kind of on the ground, that are BC kind of getting stuck in all this mess.

Tyler 18:06

Well, I think as a community of gym owners, both, you know, everywhere, right as, as these communities arise, what you need is you need collective ideas. First off, but a bunch of ideas are not the only thing. And the nice thing about having a group of a group of gym owners together sharing these ideas as they'll go out and test them. And then if this process is happening, what we're doing is we're, we're gradually coming to terms with what maybe is the best practice for the moment. And why, by the way, we don't have that yet. Nobody really knows how to survive. If your gyms got to be closed for six months out of the year, nobody quite knows how to do that. But if 400 gyms are navigating it 100 survive, those 100 might have 15 strategies, that kind of work. And now we can start to boil it down. And if we don't kind of unite as a community to figure this out, everybody has nearly the same ethic, the same goal, they want to help people obviously everybody listening to these conversations we're having with guys like you've ever been. And some of the ladies that have been on that as gym owners, this very much results in community outreach. And this is a feel good results based trade that people get into. But I think we need best practices and we need these businesses to stay open. And if we do this long enough, and we come together, eventually we'll have enough a large enough sample size of knowing like this works, this didn't this works here this did and we can start to really draw some conclusions that can then help everybody but it's not everybody to get together share ideas and test them. And that is the nature of navigating anything as a community if we need the collective in order to do it. I mean, we don't need their fucking help. We don't need anybody's money. You don't need any other gym owners money, but man an idea. Or maybe knowing that your idea works like confidence that it worked and you didn't just get lucky now that this is a principle that you can drive forward and everything you do and now you've got some ironclad shit to build your business on.

John Fairbanks 19:57

Yeah. And we all know how that feels. Like Tyler and I have been talking about this up top a lot lately, which is the idea of, How good does it feel, when you have an idea that maybe you've spent a lot of time personally, like mulling over, I think we should do this. Like, I think this is what we should do about how I'm feeling. Maybe you talk to a business partner, you talk to somebody that's near you and kind of say, kind of bring them in on that. And then you have the opportunity to maybe talk to another gym owner or talk to somebody that is adjacent to what you do. And you're just talking to them, and then they go, do you know, it would be a great idea. And they literally say the thing that you've been spending all this time talking about? And obviously you're like, That's it, like holy shit, like, that affirmation that you need of being like, I'm not crazy. Like this could work. Like, this is what we could do next, or somebody else like, oh, yeah, we started that three months ago. And that's the best case scenario you'd like. Awesome. Tell me everything that went horrible.

Everett 20:55

That's one thing I found during that pandemic, is that. Again, it might be locally for me, but I noticed kind of before, a lot of the gyms kind of in the area, were very territorial, very competitive. And then, after the first kind of lockdown, or ours, was like four months, people started like, what are you guys doing? And then, like, just trying to interpret the laws like, Okay, well, what does this mean? So everybody would like gym owners in the city and in the province would all kind of try and figure out ideas, or how could we do this? Or are you guys allowed this, and a lot of people kind of ended up working together? Because basically, it was like, put the egos aside, hey, we're all in this together. And we gotta make it through. So let's find out what works and try to try and adapt through this. And I found that it was nice to see that your community basically kind of reconnected again and realized that, like in a bad situation, no, we're, we're all on the same side.

John Fairbanks 21:51

I would, I would love to dig in just a little bit more. Ever. You've been open, right? You said for nine years. Yeah. But you said you've learned more, you've done more things right. In the last 18 months. I'm really interested in it. I'm sure folks that are listening or watching would be interested. Maybe what is the thing in the last 18 months that you've changed? The most? Like, what was the biggest thing that you altered specifically over these last two, you know, year and a half?

Everett 22:19

I've done all of the classic gym seminars. So I've done like the Ben version, I think was a business of excellence. I've done it. John Gilson, I've done Jason Khalipa is where they basically talk about kind of how to run a business. I liked a lot of them. But the one thing I never kind of disagreed with a lot of them on is like building your business, like you're gonna sell it. But I'm like, Well, I'm never gonna sell my business. It's like my baby, it's everything like this. But I was approaching it the wrong way. Because I thought like, like, he didn't say, like, basically do it like, or because you're going to sell your business, like you're going to sell your business, because it's what I did before, I took up too much responsibility. And I tried to do basically everything, and then realized that it's stepping back putting the right people in the right place. And this is the one thing that I I did, like I, I outsourced some of the stuff to my staff, but I, I didn't, I basically just kind of assigned it say like, John, okay, you're gonna do this. And then. And then basically what I ended up doing is basically talking to them. For example, I talked to my staff. Okay, I need to find out who's available on weekday mornings to coach because I only want the people that want to be there. On weekday mornings, if somebody is a night person, and they need three coffees before they can do anything, I don't want them coaching my 6am class. So I basically would figure out, okay, like, putting the right people in the right place. So they feel empowered to do what they're best at. And then by going to my coach is like, Okay, well, do you have any ideas of like, what you want to do, you want to run a running club Good. Tell me what help you need, you're gonna try and build us and get people to do what they want to do best and put them kind of in the right position. And that's probably been the biggest lesson is realizing that I can do everything. But I shouldn't do anything. It's getting the right people in the right space to do the things that they're best at doing. And it's been this happier, more productive staff, better ideas, because they're, and they're also understanding how hard it is to do certain things. Because like, Oh, I'll run this program, it'll be super easy and realizing, Oh, crap, it's not that easy. It's the sales and marketing funnels, and figuring everything out and being able to help them along with that to help so we can all grow together and give them the option like, I'm not naive thinking about, hey, you know what they're gonna be these coaches are gonna be with me forever. I want them to be able to grow and if they want to do something on their own, do something on their own and be successful at it. And then maybe this and working together in the future. It's not like we cut ties and they go out and kind of do their own thing. It's like, well, maybe we can grow this project and then we can kind of work together on this in the future, so that again, we all kind of win. Basically,

Tyler 25:05

I love those arrangements, especially for coaching, because it should, in my opinion, be an entrepreneurial endeavor, like, because you should have your people as a coach, not just a gym. But if you have coaches that are doing semi privates or one on ones and things like that they want to be you, they should be coaching people, they connect you they should align with, it shouldn't be any one of your coaches would be the perfect guy for this guy, it's probably not how it is in reality. But I think that as these systems grow, and you start stepping away from things by empowering them to do that, we've seen a lot of gym models where then they can just crush it, because the coach can really chase their passion, you build their passion into their segments of the gym. And now their responsibilities are aligned with exactly what they want to be doing. But their outcomes kind of are too you know, you give them enough to eat and give them the stuff that they need to be doing. And then give them a path to build their own thing. Then by the way, if it grows big, you wouldn't, you're not here to take all the money, if someone starts a running club, they can do it. And then somebody grows that into their thing, while they're just running it out of here and you get the benefits. They're doing the sales like these, these are systems where you can grow a really, really multifaceted gym that can offer a lot for people by building through your personnel, not just through yourself. And as a gym owner, we always do that. And we're like, oh, it's just I built myself into the gym. And now we just do the one thing that I liked doing. And then it stays like that I make everybody do in a gym, everyone through that box. And that's I would say, what's that that's about a third or fourth year lesson. Like fuck me, everybody hates me. And I think in doing exactly the things you described, it forces you to think in that way, which is the way I think all businesses need to go towards growing and scaling. And you being more useful as an owner is like, I just have to offload the tasks that I'm doing to somebody I trust to do them well. And I got to know who they are. And they gotta be in the right place. Because so many coaches come in and they can coach. And they just want to be exercisers, okay. And maybe there's a spot for a coach who really likes exercising, who can coach sometimes, but part isn't really in it fine. But you give them just that and you're not gonna give them a whole lot of leeway. Beyond that point, you don't want them doing your sales, you don't want them taking a lot of initiative. And maybe you want to make sure you have somebody in there taking care of the bulk of it. But I do think that there's so much value in empowering your coaches to do what they want to do, there's always some ditch digging to be done. But if there's a lot of friction between what they're coaching and who they're coaching and how it's going, maybe they're just not in the right place. You know,

Everett 27:30

like that. And that's the thing, like, when I started doing that, I had one of one of my longtime members reach out to me because I like most gyms, Saturdays and Sundays are a little bit harder to get people to work. Because most people like the weekend St. And I had a member reach out to me and basically said, like, she always shows up on the weekend. She's like, you know what, like, my dad came the weekend she did the class, he loved to keep programs like that at his gym, she's like, out if you want, like, I will coach the Saturday classes. I'm like, awesome. I don't even have to go like, Okay, who wants to work the weekend this weekend, like, she wants to work weekend, she wants to run the programming. So like, awesome, you know what, it's your baby, run with it. And like this, is having the right people that are doing it with passion, that is because like gym members, I only want people that want to be here. If they don't want to be here, I'm going to refund them and send them on their way. I want the coaches doing what they're gonna do best because they have that, that fire passion and love when they're doing their, their their task.

John Fairbanks 28:29

Yeah, because that easily just translates right over to your members. And it means immediately all of a sudden, just like you said, all those changes happen, attrition goes down, right, your staff is happier, like everything starts to feel like it's starting to really click.

Tyler 28:42

And you know, we want to be building as your business progresses, you want to be adding layers, and you want to be adding layers that can make money and can make money at a larger scale that don't require so much input from you as the owner. And that has to come from empowering your coaches and giving them basically the keys to building an entire structure of revenue and programs and sales. You build a whole structure around a person who, you know, you can put your horses in front of, and I think it really is. I think that a lot of people leave on the table by just having coaches, run and group classes. And that's it. You know, I think that that's, uh, you end up with placeholders instead of real quality coaches at that point.

John Fairbanks 29:18

Yeah, they end up being just 100% dependent upon you. Also now it's very much like, you know, I've equated it before, but it's like the little piggies, those little piggies that come up and they need to be fed. And they constantly need to be fed. And eventually they get really huge and they get fat and they get maybe they get happy because they're getting fed so well right to where I like the your mentality and why you went about it ever and how you've explained it is is a great way of kind of maybe flipping that concept of being like, maybe you need to figure out how fucking hard this goddamn thing is. Instead, it's going to be like dominant power you take Hear the assumption, I'm gonna give you the tools,

Everett 30:03

I always tell people like, you're not going to make your living coaching group classes. Like if that's not where the money basically is, and this is like, it's a horrible analogy, but I'm a weird guy. I'm not a nice person, I take the strip clubs because it's a long story short. I basically last time I went to a strip club besides trying to correct a posture, I was more curious about their business model. And I was blown away when I figured out again, it might be different than us. But at least here in Canada, the way it works is we know, when they have those banners like, oh, this Friday is candy, who's going to be here? I didn't realize that candy pays to be there, she's got to pay like $1,000 to go on stage. That's her advertising budget, she loses money when she's on stage. But that's your advertising. And then she gets the connection with the clients to the back room. That's where she makes her money. And I liken that to basic coaching, you're, you're basically timing the classes is your time to practice to get a connection to the client, so that you can go and do other things or find out like, Oh, I got a bunch of runners, maybe I can start a running program, or I see all these people are bad at double unders, I can run a double under a clinic, and to give them that kind of advertising instead of like, because like people who come in if they're just to personal training, well, unless you have a giant roster of clients, it's eventually going to dry up and you don't have a connection to these numbers. So it's gonna be harder to, basically , to make more sales and to understand people's needs, versus being able to see these people a couple times a day, you get to meet more people. And you also get to practice making connections with people as well.

John Fairbanks 31:39

Could you imagine? Could you imagine the mindset shift, that if you ran a gym, and your group classes, coaches that wanted access to your people, if they paid you to run the group classes, that would be

Everett 32:02

This is also where gym owners always have to deal with this. When coaches are doing work for them, they're like, well, if I'm charging $100 an hour, I should get $100 an hour. And then again, that whole membership, basically thing like you multiply the members not understanding what the overhead is, and the base that the time usage the space, you should be having access to the clients like all but I'm only doing remote programming for them. Yes, but you would not have had these clients if you didn't have access to them. So that's covered as part of the overhead and the expenses and trying to break that down to explain to people like you're not doing it to be an asset to take money out of it. It's just you have expenses to cover, as well as this is not a basically like a free ride on it on a train on this one it well and plus

Tyler 32:47

your facility, all the equipment it does, it has value and it has value that they need to use every time less so they go pay five grand for a building of their own. Another thing that I noticed, you know, you know, when I was in the tech field was that we had to purchase all of our own tools like the last job. When I went to the web, we took it seriously. I go in he's like, I mean, obviously like I had some shit, but like all the really expensive shit was normally like the company just had, right? i Please i know you gotta buy all your own stuff. I was like, wait, what, and I was like doing the math, I was just like, $20,000 You're fucking crazy, right. And also, like, I was like, good at the job already. Like people are like, come on, you want me here. He's like, I'll help you. Like, I'll buy it all if you want to, and he said, You can pay me 100 bucks a month if you want to. And you can pick the nicest shit or whatever. But the point is, I want you to own this. Because then you have value as a professional meaning if you own all these tools, and you quit here today, you know that when you quit, if you if I go to another tech company in that field, and I say I'm looking, I have all my own shit, I'm easily the most hireable person beyond all my other credibility, they go. He's a professional, he's invested. And I think when you empower your coaches and empower slash, force that into your model, where they need to know that they should be offering more services, they shouldn't just be a placeholder. They shouldn't just be a timer runner and say three to one go and they shouldn't just be a demo boy, and hit a button. And that's not what the job is. And once they expand that into developing other services, and getting people into offering those services, now they're operating like a goddamn fitness professional. And otherwise, you go to the goddamn YMCA, if you want to stand and say up, down, left, right for an hour, but that's not what we're doing here. And I think building it in that way and empowering them to be engaged and create offers and services forces them into an entrepreneurial mindset, which then allows them to develop a whole segment of your business that that person gets an entire corner of your business and opportunities and clients and everything. And then you're growing your business within each of those people, instead of just this loose model. Like you feel like you're fucking dragging people along and trying to get members and that sucks. That's a rough game. But

Everett 34:55

I think it was Ben Bergeron that had a great quote. Somebody wrote in and asked him a question. He said, like, what if I pay for my coaches' certifications? And he just quits? And then the answer, the question was, well, like, well, what if you don't pay us for certifications, then he doesn't quit. Like, I would rather have somebody who I, I've grown and has gotten to a good coach and eventually leads me versus having this idiot who's never gotten any better. That's something I can't get rid of. And it's, it's getting, trying to get your coaches to do the best they can and how to replicate their skills, what's something that they're good at, so they can share kind of with other people again, so that everybody grows and and empowers that coach to do stuff instead of as a gym, or I'll run a seminar, it's like, No, you're the head coach, you can run the seminar, basic, basic step up that responsibility, get more comfortable doing that, and expand on those basically those skills.

John Fairbanks 35:49

Yeah, go ahead. It's amazing how much power right you have, as a gym owner, just in the back, like your ability, as long as you have the time, right and ever, you've talked a lot about like, where you've, you've been making time for yourself and identifying where you can get that time because once you get that time, now, it allows you just start playing a much different game than before, because now you have the ability to step back and kind of look right 30,000 feet up or whatever 10,000

Everett 36:23

on the business versus in the business,

John Fairbanks 36:24

right and, and how you can kind of start to help manipulate positive behaviors out of your people, just like you said, it's no, I don't need to be the guy, I but I do need you to start developing this skill, so that you can be the guy or you can be the gal that's going to run this thing and be able to own it. Because it'll make you better. And I'm not intimidated. If your powerlifting program kicks, so much as asking that you could open up your own thing or do your own thing. And I would love to be able to continue to foster and work with you through that. The same way that you have the ability to then also manipulate as a gym owner, you probably have the ability using your strip club analogy, because I know that there's things that we've been able to do with folks that we've worked with, of how can you motivate your coaches to start doing the behaviors that you'd prefer to have them do so maybe you put less emphasis on group classes, maybe you have less group classes available, and put more emphasis on those semi privacy, you talked about Tyler those one on ones do you can provide better value all of a sudden, just through your compensation scale, or how you you can manipulate those things, to maybe not make it as extreme as where they're gonna pay you 1000 bucks to come in and coach for a day in the group scenario, but definitely that reward mentality, that payment mentality can be manipulated and worked in such a way to where you help push your people in the right direction, which then makes them more valuable.

Everett 38:07

And trying to get people like I always kind of tell my staff, like, my goal is to get you to be like those Russian nesting dolls is like, Okay, you're good at this. Now I want the people below you, I want you to duplicate yourself with this. And then those people duplicate those people so that basically your goal is to train somebody else to do your job. Because your job now is to make more of you. And at least once they find something they're good at and that gives them leadership, it gives them confidence saying, Oh, you know what, I'm awesome at, for example, doing personal training. So okay, I need you to help the other coaches to get awesome, like you have personal training. So you are no longer just doing personal training, you are now basically teaching everybody else how to do personal training. So basically, you're stepping up and rolling and trying to get other people to do what you do. And that goes from like, top to bottom from a gym owner. All the way down to like the cleaners. You want to try and get everybody basically not just stagnating but trying to do better and get the train of other people to learn what they've learned over the years but in a faster way. And to get

Tyler 39:10

John, are we to the drumroll bursting. All right, Everett, I send off a question. You give one piece of advice to somebody looking to maybe start down your path and become a gym owner coach however they see fit, but someone who maybe wants to fall in your shoes was one piece of advice you could give to somebody who's new dollars.

Everett 39:29

Get a mentor, mentor. That's the best thing you can do is find somebody by somebody or good or has experienced somebody that you want to emulate. Ask them questions, follow them around like a lost puppy. Or if you have to pay for their time. That's you'll learn the wisdom that they've learned from all their mistakes. You will learn that on base without having to make the same mistakes.

John Fairbanks 39:51

What was ever if we're talking about the mentors for you, what were some of the most valuable mentors was it, Jim ownership Yep, was it

Everett 40:04

on? I've interned under numerous coaches, I've done mental performance coaches, I've done business coaches. And I've, I've always learned from everybody I've, I've, I've worked with and everybody, even the clients I meet, and on a daily basis, I'm like, What can I learn from this person? I'm always trying to learn basically more from other people just basically, from the wisdom of others. And wisdom comes from making mistakes. Yeah, well, I

John Fairbanks 40:31

I love it. Well, man, I appreciate you being able to come on here with us and be able to bestow some of that wisdom. Definitely lots of nuggets that you help drop. If folks want to be able to follow you, they want to follow your story, they want to follow the gym, kind of what's the best way for them to keep up with you.

Everett 40:47

I'm not very good at social media, but Crosta Bytown on Instagram, or basically Bytown dot fit is probably the best way all of our links are kind of on their

John Fairbanks 40:57

Bytown dot fit. Yeah. Awesome. Tyler dropped off. So I'll go ahead and close this out. So if you're watching this video, that means you're already in our Facebook group. So we're glad to have you here. If you're listening to it, that means that we have you here on the podcast. And we want to be able to, we'd love to have you be able to join the Facebook group. So you can come into the Facebook group, it's the gym owners movement on Facebook, and come in there it's a community that's dedicated to gym owners, right? There's gym owners that are in the group, people that care about gym owners, and it's dedicated to these types of conversations. You know, this is where all the video content that we do from our interviews gets dropped into the group and being able to kind of share lots of just like you said, ever but share, right that wisdom that then can help grow and, and make a difference. I think lots of gym owners are in this thing to be able to make a difference in the lives of the people that they support. And that's definitely the motivation for us to be able to continue to support and grow the kind of that gym owner community. It's

Everett 42:03

silly trying to go about it yourself without asking for help. Like yeah, and that's exactly what a gym owners group is great for is basically teaching you all those lessons and helping you because there's always going to be somebody that's got a similar problem or has had a similar experience. Yeah,

John Fairbanks 42:18

you can follow me on Instagram at Jay banks. FL you can follow Tyler

Tyler 42:24

Tyler effing stone and Instagram if you can hear me Sorry, I had my trouble. Stop just bombing out.

John Fairbanks 42:29

We can hear you Tyler Yep, Tyler effing stone on Instagram. Awesome black. We'll close it for us for today, and we'll see everybody next time. See ya.

Untitled design (28) png

Gym Owners Revolution © 2023
Gym Owners Revolution is not associated with Facebook Inc.