As an entrepreneur, my business has evolved over the years. Likemost trainers, I started off looking for as many clients as possible. Imeasured success by the number of sessions I, personally, did each week. Next,I replicated myself and hired other trainers to take some of the spillover frommy marketing efforts. Doing more sessions by myself was now a sign that thingsWEREN'T going exactly as I wanted. My new goal, at this point, was to be ableto motivate and to teach other trainers to train people as I would. Successmeant that I was doing LESS training, more teaching and more managing.
When I added my second trainer, it was like a light bulb goingoff. I felt like I found what I was supposed to be doing. Working ON a training business seemed a whole lot moreinteresting than working IN a training business day after day. I found the ideaof planning, marketing and strategizing to be thrilling. Knowing that myprosperity and that the prosperity of others was tied to my ability to find andthen thrill clients provided the excitement that I was looking for in my workday.
Today, I measure my success by how profitable I can make AllCanadian Fitness while keeping me "separated" from the business. Ihave successfully removed myself from the daily work of personal training, yetwe are doing more personal training than ever. People understand that workingwith me is a "different" product, billed at a different rate. Itpleases me greatly knowing that I can choose to work "in" personaltraining, not out of necessity, but rather out of a desire to do the work. Ipick the clients that excite me.
It wasn't an overnight process and there have been timeswhere I have had to immerse myself once again into the daily grind, but, thesetimes are becoming much less frequent.
The latest thing that I am working on is a comprehensive organizationchart for All Canadian Fitness. This will allow me to look at the business asan entity, not, as a part of ME. This is one of those things that I wish I haddone long ago. If you want real clarity about your organization and how youactually do business, an org chart is invaluable. Do it now rather than later.
Start off with a pad of paper. Write down everything thatyou do in a day of work. Training clients, making calls, checking email,writing ad copy, doing laundry, picking up supplies, etc... Assign these tasksto different job positions. You will have things like personal trainer,maintenance supervisor, bookkeeper, and marketing specialist, etc... Take yourlist of daily tasks and create positions to handle each of them. Next, startfilling in the positions with actual people. More than likely, YOUR name willbe in most of the boxes. That's okay. For this exercise, it is important tosimply recognize what your business actually requires to run on a daily basis. Onceyou are ready, you'll start to remove your name from the different positionsand fill them in with your "replacement."
It can be overwhelming when you do this and see that you areactually doing the work of six, seven or eight people! Conversely, it isliberating when you are at the point where you can actually fill in thepositions with the names of others and you can rest assured that things willcarry on, with or without you.
Ernie Schramayr is an ACE-Certified Personal Trainer and the owner of All Canadian Fitness, a private training studio in Hamilton, Ontario (www.allcanadianfitness.com).