Last October, I went to a Box to Business seminar in New York City, hosted by Jason Khalipa from NC Fit and Jarret Perelmutter of BRICK Sport Performance. The seminar took place over a couple days, during which Khalipa and Perelmutter shared their perspectives on the do’s and don’ts of running a gym. Even though I’ve been in the business for over a decade, I still like to take advantage of professional development opportunities, and appreciate hearing the perspectives of others. One of my biggest takeaways from the seminar was about the importance of gym owners clearly defining their core values, and communicating them to coaches and staff.
Obviously, we’ve discussed the core values of CrossFit South Brooklyn on Inside the Affiliate before, and they’re even written on our About page. Those values are that training experiences should be professional, inclusive, and effective – and those values have intuitively guided my decisions over the years with my gym. But soon after the seminar, I decided to take the time to write out exactly what I mean by those values, and added a few as well. More on this below.
After taking the time to write out our core values, I sat down with each of CrossFit South Brooklyn’s coaches to review them. For years now as owner of our gym, I’ve been unable to touch every aspect of everything that happens (much to my chagrin!), and while I take great pride in the fact that our coaches exude our values on their own, these conversations were useful reminders for why we do what we do, and be reminded about what’s important.
It is also worth noting that having these values written out makes decisions less personal. It’s one thing to have core values; it’s another to state them and have all stakeholders aware of them. When making decisions, I can ask, “Does this fit within our mission?” If not, it needs to go.
I’ve pasted CrossFit South Brooklyn’s Core Values below. If you’re a new gym owner and the core values of your gym (or your personal training business) are largely intuitive and scripted only the space of your head, I strongly encourage you to write them down. If you’ve been in the business for a while and already have your values articulated, look them over again. Remind your coaches and staff of what you stand for, and ask yourself whether all the things you’re doing fit within your mission. If they don’t, take action and get rid of what’s not working.
CrossFit South Brooklyn Core Values
The purpose of our core values is to help define the standards we hold ourselves to as an organization and as individuals at CrossFit South Brooklyn (CFSBK). These values help define what is most important to us as a team and can be used as a guideline for making both large and small decisions for what happens at CFSBK.
CFSBK aims to offer professional training services and facilities through exceptional coaching and organized, efficient classes, as well as providing a clean and organized facility with high-quality, well-maintained equipment. Our goal is to earn our members’ trust and respect through our high standards of professionalism.
CFSBK is a community of people where you’re accepted for who you are, then challenged to get better. Our goal is to create a welcoming environment for everyone regardless of their background, beliefs or fitness level. Working towards an inclusive environment allows us to do the most amount of good for the most amount of people and helps cultivate a dynamic and diverse community.
We pride ourselves in offering effective programming and coaching practices that are designed using the best of our knowledge and experience to create continued, quantifiable progress for all our members. If our members aren’t getting better, we’re not doing our job.
Cultivate a Growth Mindset
Cultivating a growth mindset reflects our belief that we always have the capacity to improve personally and professionally. As a staff, we aim to continuously improve our understanding of movement and training practices, which in turn improves our capacity as coaches. It is our belief that when our staff is constantly seeking opportunities to grow, all aspects of our operation improve, from classes and services, to facilities and systems -- and most importantly, the experience of our members.
Have Fun, Be Yourself (and Keep CFSBK Weird!)
Life is far too short to not enjoy where you work. We have the privilege of working in an environment that improves people’s health, is often the best part of our member’s day, and ultimately is a positive force for everyone who walks through our doors. Embrace this and come to the gym with a positive and playful mindset. Have fun, be true to yourself, be weird, and laugh everyday.
- How To Become a Grown-Up CrossFit Gym
- Collective Learning and CrossFit
- 5 Things I Know to Be True About Running a CrossFit Gym
- Your Fran Time Doesn't Matter: Starting a Good CrossFit Gym
- The Organic Affiliate Growth Model
- Failing, Bailing, and Training Culture at CrossFit Affiliates
- An Open Letter to New CrossFit Coaches