Because gym owners almost always love coaching, it’s easy to fall into the trap of wanting to do all the hands-on stuff yourself. You love your work, so why would you want to let anyone else take over?

This week, we talk to Alwyn Cosgrove of Results Fitness to find the compelling answer to that question. We were thrilled to have the chance to sit down with Alwyn, because he was one of the first people to really convince us of the merits of systemizing our own business.

Alwyn helped us explore some of the reasons we choose not to delegate our work or simplify it with systems. A lot of times we think of handing over a task as a form of ‘giving up.’ Alwyn’s response is that “It’s not about idleness. It’s not about stepping out to be lazy. It’s about what if you had to? Could you?”

When Alwyn was diagnosed with stage-four cancer, he very quickly figured out how to get all the systems in place that were necessary for his gym to operate optimally in his absence.

“I had to move in at UCLA to have a stem cell transplant, right? We had insurance because of the gym, but your bills at home… You still have to pay your rent or your mortgage. You still have to pay your car payment. You still have to pay for everything, right? How do you create a business that runs without you? That’s what you should be doing in the first place.”

Alwyn’s gym underwent a thorough systemization under circumstances that were far from ideal. But it worked. In fact, he jokes that he must have been the jam in the system, because business boomed while he was gone.

As a result of the groundwork he laid years ago, Alwyn is now able to focus on refining his systems and getting incredible results. Some of his members, for example, have been with his gym for 17 straight years, with the average membership running in the seven-to-ten-year range. Ideally, the only reason someone would chose not to renew their membership is that they’ve moved out of the area entirely. Otherwise, he wants to be the last gym his members will ever join.

This week on Barbell Business, we interview Alwyn to discuss:

  • How to be the last gym they’ll ever join
  • How to create community
  • Why you should never name your gym after yourself
  • Why your business is too important for improve

 

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