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In 2008 I completed my Bachelor of Science degree in Anatomy and Structural Biology at University of Otago.
I played representative sport in Hawkes Bay and Otago including rugby, rugby league, touch rugby and swimming. Injuries however resulted in a shift in career direction. In 2009 I was persuaded by a friend training for the SAS to join him in a CrossFit® WOD (Workout of the Day). I became immediately hooked on the CrossFit® concept and went on to complete my CrossFit® - Level One Certification.
With Kararaina Ngoungou, my partner, we set up our own CrossFit® gym together in Rotorua in July 2013. I'm responsible for the design and delivery of all of the gym training programmes and the design and development of additional courses and services. Kararaina is responsible for marketing and operations as well as dealing with members’ feedback, new enquiries, prospecting, promotional activities and developing operational flow charts.
I initially did a business plan with another consultant but after two years, I reached a stage where I needed to refocus and have a better idea as to where I was going. Managing day-to-day business operations and challenges don't always allow you to see the big picture and it is easy to lose a sense of direction. It's still a young business and one of the challenges was finding a good business structure. I felt that we could be much more efficient. When contacting Dean Dalton, I was looking for guidance, goal setting and a plan that I could visualise on paper.
Dean helped me to develop my business plan and we worked through it together assessing figures and defining ourselves. He showed me his costing model for gyms and the figures I had to go for, like his DaltonPlan Benchmarks, and it gave me confidence. Our pricing was good.
It became obvious that we needed to focus on customer retention.
For us it's all about reaching and retaining the right number of members. We can potentially increase this number by about 40% before having to change to a larger venue.
To improve profitability, we must grow and plan how to market the brand and beat the competition by diversifying our offer.
Dean has worked with a number of CrossFit gyms, and when working with him we discovered that most people need to be educated to the benefits of functional, CrossFit style training. As a result, I have developed an introductory “The fundamentals of CrossFit Rotorua” course for new members that is tailored to deal with this educational process.
I have discovered Dean's flow charts and I absolutely love them! They can be used in all areas of our business and we will gain efficiency at all levels, from marketing to training and retaining members.
We were the only CrossFit gym when we started and now we have two competitors but I can see my business growing to be the dominant gym in Rotorua with our specific fitness programmes. This business planning experience was eye-opening, educational and inspiring. We are really happy we have found the guidance and direction we needed and I will definitely look for ongoing support from Dean.