5 Fitness Business Lessons from Las Vegas

sam-kicks-back-in-lvHey, Bedros Keuilian here…

This is guest blog post from one of my top coaching clients Saman “seven figure Sam” Bakhtiar.

Sam’s birthday fell on the same day as day one of Fitness Business Summit so he had to take off to Las Vegas for some preplanned birthday festivities.

But Sam never disappoints… he even found five fitness business lessons to take away while partying in Vegas.

Check it out….

Bedros, first of all I want to thank you for being a mentor and a friend. You have literally helped me transform my life. I remember the days when I used to train 14-18 clients per day without getting anywhere.

As you know my Birthday was on May 1st and due to prior obligation I had to leave Friday evening for my birthday weekend. I’m so bummed out that I missed two of the three days of the summit.

Here is my CC # PLEASE SEND ME THE SUMMIT DVD SET ASAP. I heard that I missed out on some very powerful client getting and profit exploding tactics and that the event was off the hook!

*** NOTE FROM BEDROS: FBS09 DVDs were only made available to attendees for purchase.

Here is a low down on my birthday weekend in Las Vegas and the five things that I learned about running a business.

1)    Be careful of the company you keep and people you associate with.

sam-and-shugI had Suge Knight (you know the infamous CEO of death row records and the guy who hung Vanilla Ice upside down from a 10 story window of a hotel). Yes the same Suge that was with Tupac when he got shot at my cabana at Wet Republic (pool party at the mgm).

He seemed really cool and we were drinking his favorite drink Don Julio Silver. Well after one of my friends closed the curtain at the Cabana because he didn’t want bunch of people coming in and looking in our host informed me that we have exactly 2 minutes to open the curtain before the feds come in. I was shocked Suge informed me that at all times he has 3 federal agents following him everywhere he goes.

So lesson #1… always be careful of the company you keep no matter how famous or in this case infamous they are. I am sure by now the feds pulled up all my records just because I had a drink and hung with him.

2)    Role models have a big responsibility on their shoulders.

sam-and-tysonYou can either turn this responsibility to something very good or very bad. Do your best to make sure it’s something good.(As a fitness professional you are a role model whether you like it or not.)

I also hung out with Mike Tyson on Friday night at a nightclub called the Drai’s. The funny thing about this is that Mike was someone who I always admired growing up in junior high and high school until he bit Evander Holyfield’s ear off.

Everything went downward for him after that and he was never able to recover.

I mean one bad thing after another.

The funny thing was that Mike Tyson after all his glory and wealth (he made over 500 million with his boxing career) was hanging out by himself with no friends. So I invited him for a drink to our table. As you can see he really let himself go.

3) If you want to be the best then you have to be hungry and do what it takes to be the best.

Las Vegas is not complete until you visit Rehab. Now don’t get the wrong idea Rehab is a pool party every Sunday at the Hard Rock Casino. This is the mother of all pool parties in Las Vegas and in the world as far as I know.

Every Sunday people line up and wait 3-4 hours for a chance to get in this wild pool party. Every Sunday this place is literally packed with celebrities, ball players, and of course gold diggers.

I ran in to UFC fighter’s Chuck “the iceman” Lidell. I have met Chuck a few times and he is always very nice and personable.

Most of the times that I have run in to him he has been “faded” and this time was no different… he could barely stand up.

Sam with "The Iceman"

Now if you have followed Chuck’s career, you know he used to be one of the baddest dudes in UFC, … as a matter of fact he’s the one who sent Randy “the natural” Couture into retirement.

Chuck has lost his last few fights and in fact has been getting knocked out every time he fights these days.

So here is the take home lesson from this… Chuck was once at the top but he’s no longer “hungry” to stay and do what it takes to be on top.

As fitness professionals we have to constantly stay on top of our game to be the number one – if not there is always someone that would love to be in our position and will do whatever it takes to get there.

On a side note Bedros, wouldn’t you agree that I’m in much best shape than Chuck? lol

4) Use the law of scarcity in your business.

Now I am a very happily married man. My wife and I have an awesome relationship especially when it comes to trust. As far as we’re concerned if you don’t have trust or respect for each other then there’s no need to be together.

Every where that I went during that weekend I had my wedding ring on and let it be known that I was married.

For some strange reason I was always surrounded by attractive women that just wanted to hang out with me.

Now I have been to Vegas a million times before when I was single and I have never had anyone approach me wanting to just hang out.

I know I didn’t all of a sudden get better looking… as a matter of fact I have a lot less hair and muscle that I had a few years ago.

But then I figured it out. People always want what that they can’t have.

Think about it this scenario: there are two trainers, one with a schedule that is wide open which means that he can train you at 4am, 6am, 10am,4pm, 8pm or whatever time you are available.

Then there is another trainer that only has one spot available on Tuesday’s and Thursday’s at 5pm. Who would you want to train with? I’m guessing the trainer who is booked (social proof) and who only has very limited availability (scarcity).

5) The biggest motivator for people is not money… Its actually recognition.

red_carpetIn Vegas people want to be recognized and so they pay a grip for VIP tables and VIP Cabanas to get that kind of recognition. They want to show everyone that they are the man and they don’t wait in line like everyone else.

In business the same applies. Money is important BUT you can motivate your employees and trainers (and clients) more by simple recognition.

Here are a few things that work for me with my employees and trainers.

a) Have a trainer of the month contest. Reward them by posting their picture on the wall of “trainer of the month”.

b) Simply acknowledge them and let them know that you recognize their performance and let them know that you appreciate them.

c) Take them out to lunch and praise their performance.

d) Have a parking spot in the front for the employee of the month.

e) Give them a gift certificate for the movies or their favorite restaurant and thank them SPECIFICALLY for the area in which you recognized their work performance.

And that’s the story of my most recent trip to Vegas.

Dr. Saman Bakhtiar

Saman is a highly sought after fitness guru in southern California with two thriving fitness facilities under his belt.

Hey, Bedros here again… I’m taking on a handful of ambitious and motivated fitness professional into my private HYBRID coaching program. If you think you qualify and are ready to take it to the next level here’s how you can work with me one-on-one.