Do You Want to Be An Owner? First Ask Yourself…

Are you thinking about buying a gym, dance studio, swim school or any other type of children’s activity center? There are 7 critical things you should think about BEFORE you sign on the dotted line.

This may not be the sexiest list, but it is important. We gleaned these 76 questions from discussing ownership with seasoned owners of a multi-sport facility. Their experience includes making the transition from coach to owner quickly, building a profitable gym and expanding into multiple sports, and adding an additional 50% to their facility space.

Hopefully you can avoid crucial mistakes and put the stepping stones in place that will lead you to a successful business by understanding the information provided by the answers to our list of questions.  

Ownership isn’t all parent and student interaction and fun. It requires spending more time running your business than coaching your students and demands that you do some forward and serious thinking.

  1. Do you know what you want out of the business?
    -Be sure you know what you’re aiming for.
  2. Do you know how you want to exit the business?
    -Without understanding your intended destination you’ll simply wander.
  3. How many years do you want to invest in owning?
    -This gives your plan a timeline.
  4. Do you have good people under you?
    -Without them, you won’t get anywhere.
  5. Are you ready to let go of the day-to-day (teaching/coaching)?
    -Sitting behind a desk is much different than being on the floor, studio or pool deck.
  6. What liability are you willing to take on?
    -Being an owner exposes you to risk you haven’t taken on before.
  7. What is your market like?
    -Other gyms or activity centers may be around you. The demographics for your location is critical knowledge.

These aren’t the only questions you should ask yourself as you consider business ownership, but they are some that are highly critical and often overlooked.


About the Author:

After studying graphic design at the University of Georgia, Jill held several positions in media and marketing including Art Director, Editor and Marketing Director. As a student of dance, she has spent plenty of time in children’s activity centers and puts that experience to work for her in the work she does with Jackrabbit. In addition to her interest in dance, Jill also enjoys sports, gourmet cooking, entertaining, singing and spoiling her five grandchildren.

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