The Disney company has a number of business strategies that gymnastics gym owners would be wise to emulate. Following the philosophy of its founder, the company aimed to create a warm, safe, and family feeling about all aspects of their business.
Creativity and innovation have been hallmarks of the Disney success story. Walt Disney was never satisfied to do what others had done previously, but created a whole new “dream” business and culture. Success and competitiveness can depend on a creative and innovative gym culture. Creative and innovative facility, equipment, programs, staff and training methods can make your gym stand out above the crowd.
Strong leadership is fundamental for gyms to grow and succeed. Walt Disney was the original strong and visionary leader and then Michael Eisner came in and added his strong management innovations to the business. The secret to strong leadership is a crystal clear vision of the future for the gym, the gym business and its staff, coaches and gymnasts.
One of the prime factors in the success of the Disney business is the Disney approach to selection, training, retention and communication with its employees. Disney hires on personality and then trains them. It is looking for a positive, outgoing, enthusiastic employees that are open to training. The same should be true for any gym looking to hire, train and manage their staff. Gymnastics coaching knowledge is secondary to the ability of a coach to transmit that knowledge successfully to young children, and technical knowledge is only a small part of the real success of any gym. Coaching knowledge is obtainable and trainable, but changing a “bad” personality is extremely difficult. Coaches with “bad” personalities can be the downfall of your team, program and gym. With the shortage of high level quality coaches that exists anyway, you are wise to hire great people and let us train them for you.
When every gym is competing for business and market share, excellent customer service is not a choice, it is critical. If you notice at Disney World, you will never see any trash. The place always looks spotless because the staff is continuously cleaning at all times. Keeping a clean, well-organized gymnastics facility, alone, may give you the edge in offering superior customer service in your area. Families, that spend their money on gymnastics, expect that the facility, that they take their child to, is similar to their own home in cleanliness. Using that as a baseline, and then planning and managing the entire customer experience, from the time they approach your gym building until the time they leave the gym, will give you a competitive service advantage.
Build a “Disney” Gym
Take the above components and build a unique, customer service oriented, business with well-trained enthusiastic employees. You will stand out and even dominate your market just as Disney has.