“How to Make Your Club a Fitness Landmark” | by: Tyler Montgomery | Club Solutions

Certainly there is something to say for the clubs that amass more than 100,000 square feet (a Big-Box Fitness/Health-club OR Multi-purpose facilities)…. However, what those clubs don’t always possess that a small club may is the ability to be quick, nimble and more creative with space.

The major problem for most small to mid-size clubs is they get trapped in the mindset of a small club. They spend more time thinking about why they can’t do something, as opposed to figuring out how they can accomplish the desired task.

Today is the day that you stop thinking about yourself as a small club. It’s time you forget the whole stigma of “we aren’t big enough” and discover how you can make your club a fitness landmark.

The first step in becoming a successful small gym is to adjust how you treat your members. In truth, most large athletic facilities have great customer service. They provide opportunities for their members outside of fitness and traditional amenities. However, most of those clubs have more members than they know what to do with.

While this may sound like a good problem to have, it really devalues the individual member — that is unless the club has spectacular customer service. The typical member really just wants to feel valued. They come to your club when they can — some more than others — and spend their hard-earned money.

At smaller facilities members feel that they should receive more of a personal interaction from your employees. Do employees strive to know each member by name ? Are they receptive when a person comes to the front desk with issues ? 

In all facilities customer service is numero uno…However, as a small facility, you will be judged even more closely. Each time you fail at an area of service to a member, you will allow them to see why they choose to pay more to go to the larger chains.

I’m not trying to use a scare tactic as to why you should have impeccable customer service, but in reality, should anyone have to remind you of the importance of your customers ?

In your company meetings, ensure that you press the issue of customer service. Have each employee describe a time since the last meeting that they interacted with a customer. If the story is positive it will be great for the rest of the team to see. If the example is negative, you have an opportunity to teach.

Not every employee you have will come hardwired for customer service.

It’s on you to take ownership of your staff’s education. Teach them how you want them to treat your members. If they can’t comply, you’ll know what you need to do….!!

“Consumer confidence in India highest since 2012”, “54% says good time to buy things” : Nielsen | ET Retail

Despite Macro-economic and political uncertainty,India continues to be the Second Most Optimistic Country in the world” and recorded its highest confidence level since the Fourth-quarter of calendar 2012, a new global study by market researcher Nielsen said…

India’s consumer confidence level increased six points in the first quarter of the current calendar year (January-March) with a score of 121, trailing only Indonesia, the most upbeat country for more than a year with 124 points.

According to the survey, 68% of urban respondents in India feel the country is going through a recessionary phase, and within this 54% say the country will be out of it in the next 12 months…

“Consumers are reconciled to the negative economic conditions and despite the challenge of inflation, are hoping for a better year,” Nielsen India President Piyush Mathur said in a statement. ” They are optimistic that overall sentiment and investment will pick up gradually.”

This flies in the face of the current state of the economy, with growth stuck in a slump and a looming threat in the form of a monsoon that might be below average, possibly adding to inflationary pressures, which, in turn, could mean the central bank will be forced to keep interest rates high.

The survey said three-fourths (74%) of respondents in India are optimistic about job prospects over the next 12 months and sentiment is up by 4 % points from the last quarter.

March quarter earnings don’t reflect too much of the consumer confidence, with most firms including Hindustan Unilever, Godrej Consumer Products and Marico posting muted numbers. “Consumer confidence is high on the hope that a strong government will come in and announce progressive policy decisions.

But actual consumption numbers are not necessarily reflecting this confidence, whether it’s consumer goods, real estate or cars,” said Zubair Ahmed, managing director of consumer goods maker GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare, maker of Horlicks and Sensodyne toothpaste.

Nielsen said more than half (54 %) of online respondents said it was a good time to buy things they want and need. On the other hand, the intention of online respondents to invest spare cash in savings is up by 6 % points to 68 % from last quarter. Consumer confidence levels above and below a baseline of 100 indicate degrees of optimism and pessimism.

Kishore Biyani, promoter of the Future Group, which runs the country’s largest modern retail chain Big Bazaar, expressed optimism that consumption would accelerate over the next few quarters. ” We are a young population which wants to step up consumption across categories. India will continue to grow… We have always been optimistic about that”, Biyani said.

Half the respondents said they are looking to invest in new technology products and buy new clothes. About a third (32 %) indicated they would invest in a retirement fund, a 9 % point increase from last quarter. Further, 36 % said they planned to invest in the stock market and in mutual funds, up from 29 % in last quarter. This is borne out by what’s happening on the stock market. Shares have been on a tear over the past few months on expectations that a Narendra Modi-led BJP will be well placed to form a stable government after the ongoing election.

“Overall discretionary spending is higher than the last FOUR – Quarters and there is a renewed focus on savings for the long term. Consumers are also anticipating the outcome of the elections and the impact will reflect in subsequent months,” Mathur said.

” Stable government leads to consistency in policies which jump start investment across sectors. Increased investment will improve customer sentiment as more employment will be created in addition to increases in Per-capita income leading to increased customer spending,” said Senior Vice President, sales and marketing, Hyundai Motor India. Improved “investment climate and consumerism will bolster business confidence too”.

Indonesia leads the global index with 124 points and the Philippines is third with 116. ” India had been the world’s most optimistic market for nine consecutive quarters until the April-June 2012 period “, when it ceded the title to Indonesia. The Nielsen Global Survey of Consumer Confidence and Spending Intentions, established in 2005, measures consumer confidence, major concerns and spending intentions among more than 30,000 respondents with Internet access in 60 countries.

In the latest round of the survey, conducted in the February 17-March 7 period, consumer confidence increased in 60 % of the markets measured by Nielsen, up from 43 % in the preceding quarter !!