Von Hollingsworth and his daughter, Anna, are serving to others enhance their lives – collectively
After 30 years as a supervisor within the electronics subject, Von Hollingsworth had develop into “restless” and he was wanting to do one thing extra significant the rest of his working days. But he wasn’t notably receptive to the concept when – seemingly out of nowhere – his daughter, Anna, urged they go into enterprise collectively by opening a health club.
“My initial response was, ‘You’re nuts. Absolutely no way,’” Von recollects telling Anna. “I said, ‘I’m too close to retirement to take that on at this point in time.’”
But, in typical Anna trend, she endured.
“Next thing I knew my inbox was full of potential franchises,” Von mentioned. “I started to do a little research on the stuff she sent me. I didn’t give her much feedback because I wasn’t seriously interested at that time. But the more I read about Anytime Fitness, the more it began to make sense.”
Less than every week earlier than Christmas in 2012, Von and Anna opened an Anytime Fitness health club collectively in Concord Township, OH.
“At the time, I was only a few years out of college and not financially able to open a gym by myself,” Anna mentioned. “But I had a pretty good investor in mind, which was my dad. I had the fitness expertise because I’d been in a gym and knew everything about the equipment and I was a certified personal trainer. I had that to bring to the table. And I’d always been a sales personality type.”
Right from the start, their complementary ability units served the enterprise nicely. Von was the “big picture guy” whereas Anna dealt with many of the day-to-day operations of the health club. But they had been each motivated by the identical factor – and it wasn’t cash.
“The most fun that we have – my wife, Anna and I – is when we go out to dinner and talk about [a gym member] who’s lost 70 pounds,” Von mentioned. “Or we talk about another member who’s off her diabetes medicine. We talk about the people who come to us and say, ‘You saved my life.’ That’s unbelievable stuff.”
And they’re not content material merely serving to members whereas they’re inside the health club. Anna and Von have develop into considerably well-known in Concord Township for his or her varied neighborhood engagement actions. Over the final three years, the health club’s “24 in 24” Challenge has raised $119,000 and helped make needs come true for native youngsters battling life-threatening sicknesses.
“Last year we had 108 members attempt the Challenge, which was 10% of our entire membership,” mentioned Anna. “This year we have an incredible 160 Challengers participating. The ‘24 in 24’ has become the heartbeat of our small business and a huge part of our community.”
And that’s just the start. Each of the final 4 years, Anna and Von have organized a “Miles for Mutts” 5K occasion, donating a mixed $17,000 to their native Lake Humane Society. Additionally, final 12 months alone, the health club’s operating membership, which incorporates practically 200 lively members, has raised practically $7,000 through varied occasions for charities within the Concord space.
The fundraisers are vital and spectacular. But it’s contained in the health club the place the magic occurs – the place Von and Anna have helped actually hundreds of members considerably enhance their health and fitness.
“I have a blast,” Von mentioned. “I’m in the gym four hours a day and I just talk to people. That’s what this is all about. I’ve cried more working for Anytime Fitness than I ever imagined. I’ve seen so many people improve their lives.”
“I think my dad’s ability to connect with our members is because they can relate to him and he can relate to them,” Anna mentioned. “He definitely creates a culture inside these walls of having a good time, smiling and just putting people in a good mood. I usually just laugh when I see him talking to people because you never know what the heck he’s talking about.”
Regarding recommendation for others who is likely to be serious about going into enterprise with an in depth relative, Anna believes being sincere about one another’s abilities and limitations is the important thing to success.
“You figure out who is best for a particular task and then you just kind of have to delegate responsibilities and then respect each other,” Anna mentioned. “With us, we knew that my dad would handle the finances and he would do our accounting and those types of things. You also need to put someone who has the skills to run a gym in that manager role. That’s where I feel comfortable.”
Despite his preliminary hesitations, Von now describes going into enterprise together with his daughter as a perpetual Father’s Day reward – and among the finest choices he’s ever made.
“It’s ended up being the smartest thing we ever did,” Von mentioned. “It’s been a joy. A whole lot of fun.”