How does it make you feel when you think about your business profitability and growth? If you are getting stomach cramps already, stay with us! We might just have the solution!
Running a business requires a whole set of skills and processes that most personal training course providers will tell you nothing about.
You may be working as an employed trainer now but if you are planning on becoming a freelance fitpro in the future or you are already self-employed and overwhelmed by the business tasks, we have good news for you!
There are ways to get rid of the daily struggle and implement strategies so you can focus on helping your clients achieve their goals.
Step 1: Complete a SWOT analysis
What the heck is SWOT analysis?
SWOT is a business tool to analyse internal and external factors that can affect your business. It is an acronym that stands for Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats. SWOT is very easy to perform, you can use the template below or take a pen and a piece of paper, divide it into four squares.
Label them as follows: top left is for Strengths, top right is for Weaknesses, bottom left is for Opportunities and the bottom right is for Threats.
Download a blank personal trainer S.W.O.T. Analysis template in the My PT Website Academy Resources section.
Strengths and weaknesses are internal factors, you should be able to identify them by asking yourself the right questions. Opportunities and threats are external factors that are beyond your control and you will need to do some research in your field to identify them.
Check the examples below, then try to complete a SWOT analysis for your business.
Ask yourself the following questions: What strengths does my business have? What business tasks do I enjoy? What are the areas where my business performs well (e.g. lead generation, conversions, client success, exceeding client expectations, etc.).
Ask yourself the following questions: What are the tasks I hate doing, are the biggest challenge, takes the longest to complete, etc.? Many trainers complain about being exhausted, not having enough time to complete business admin or that they can’t go on holiday because the business doesn’t run without them. If you’re one of them, list all your struggles here.
This area highly depends on how much competition you have in your local or online area and niche, how quick you are spotting new trends and how open you are to new challenges. Doing your research both online and locally will have benefits. Do you have a great network of local businesses in your area? Use it! Have you been invited to run a workshop at your club? Accept it!
We are advocates of building on the positives at My Personal Trainer Website, however it is very important to be aware of risks and threats that might affect your business’ present and future so make sure you look into this one too. Are there too many personal trainers of similar skill set in your gym? Do you live in a less populated area? Have you not got enough capital to invest?
Once you have a clear view on what Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats your business needs to tackle, you can move onto creating and applying strategies based on your analysis results.
Step 2: Evaluate SWOT results and apply them to your business
Build Your Brand and Business Strategy on Your Strengths
When you’re starting out or considering a business shift it's good practice to look at your strengths first. For example, you may want to choose your niche based on past experiences, create fitness packages for the goals of your ideal clients and create lead generating strategies that are in line with all the above.
Are you good at blogging? Make sure you practice it regularly and create valuable content for your readers.
Do you like talking in front of a camera? Facebook live was designed for you then, create a Facebook Group and engage them with amazing content.
Do you enjoy crunching numbers? Make sure you crack on with your cash flow tracking process regularly to keep an eye on business progress! It’s very important to focus most of your activities on tasks you enjoy doing.
Do them well and and consistently and you'll start to generate enough clientele and cashflow to outsource things you don't enjoy.
Create Strategies to Improve Your Weaknesses
Weaknesses are areas nobody really likes to think about, however figuring out how to improve them can create new opportunities in the future.
If you are the only person in your business trying to complete all the tasks related to both your role as a personal trainer and as a business owner, chances are there are certain tasks that either don’t get done or very poorly due to lack of capacity. When you become very busy as a trainer this can lead to burnout.
Take the weaknesses, one at a time from your SWOT and write down ideas on how you can improve them.
Do you struggle with bookkeeping? Calculate the costs of an accountant, ask for a few quotes at least and check the online options too, then make a decision.
What’s worth more: using your time doing something you’re good at and earning money whilst you pay someone who is a professional, or continue being less efficient by taking a lot longer to do it yourself? Follow the same procedure for each weakness.
Step 3: Review and Tweak
Now you have created and applied strategies to embrace your business’ strengths and improve its weaknesses, what’s next?
For the smooth running of your business it’s worth reviewing your progress periodically. You might find everything works smoothly, business is growing, business processes are running well and you are generating more revenue every month.
This is good news however change is part of life so it might happen that what used to be a strength is not anymore, for instance your competition has caught up. When that happens you will need to tweak your strategies and adhere to new circumstances. If you regularly review how your business is doing internally and externally you will more likely be able to spot warning signs and prevent decline.
Summing it up
Without knowing where your business management strategy fails is impossible to achieve success. Problem solving starts with asking the right questions and identifying the problems that need solving. Completing a SWOT analysis then applying it efficiently can lead to a transition from business failure to business growth.
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