Let’s Talk (More) About CrossFit

There seems to be a running joke about people who do CrossFit in that they will QUICKLY tell you that they do CrossFit.

Full disclosure:  I do CrossFit.  I love it.  It’s everything I’ve been looking for from a gym/workout program.  Weightlifting, cardio, new workouts daily, coaching, motivation, a sense of community and friendship from the others in the gym.

Now that we’ve gotten THAT out of the way:

I came across an article today that talked about why so many CrossFit gyms are CLOSING across the country even though CrossFit’s popularity continues to rise.

A lot of the comments online seemed to come from those who definitely did NOT read the article (shocker).  They were knocking the workout style and fitness routine of CrossFit, when in the article the reasons so many gyms are closing is because of the owner’s business skills, not the actual workouts.

The owner and founder of CrossFit, Greg Glassman, talked about some of the main drivers of success in CrossFit gyms.  Good coaching, caring about the athletes’ progress, prioritizing service and care were all some of the things that make CrossFit gyms successful.

A main reason that gyms have started closing is because they are straying from those principles, trying to take the easy way out, and grow way too big, too quick.  It loses the main essence of CrossFit and starts to become the type of gym they were trying to get away from.

In one of the closing paragraphs, the author writes:

The gyms that care about the right things, provide service with excellence and invest in clients will survive and thrive. The gyms that do not will struggle and then slowly fall away.

Now, by this point, if you’re an advisor like me, the similarities must be jumping off the page.

We’ve seen an increase in the importance of the client experience in the advisory business recently.

More so than ever, with fees being compressed daily, the things that will win business and keep firms successful and thriving are excellent service, actually caring about your clients, and working WITH them to achieve goals.

It’s like being a fiduciary in the advisory business.  The main goal is always to have the client’s best interest in mind, and work on the same side of the table with them as they achieve their goals.

Just like CrossFit gyms, the advisory firms that can create long lasting relationships with clients, provide excellent service and demonstrate value will win.  Those that don’t will lose and close shop.

Another telling quote from the article reads:

“There is a very Darwinian approach to how CrossFit Inc. manages it’s affiliates. Crossfit will not tell you how to run your gym or where you can open up, they will not tell owners how they have to program or coach athletes, because the “cream will always rise to the top.”

The same can be said for advisory firms.  There isn’t TOO much in the way of stopping you from opening up your own advisory firm, but that doesn’t mean you’ll automatically find success.  In time, the best of the best will rise to the top and the rest will fall by the way side.

Some people might say CrossFit is a “fad”, and some people might say there are “bubbles” within the advisory space, but one thing that will never go out of style is caring about your clients and providing great service.

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