For those currently working at a gym, or those who have employees, what works for you? What keeps you at your place of employment, or keeps your employees with you? I'm starting up a business shortly and I want to have the best staff in the area. I know this means that they have to be happy. If not they will go off and do what I am doing.
Freedom/Autonomy - Allowing employees to come to you with ideas, don't micromanage, and don't be a control freak.
Respect - Don't treat employees poorly, especially in front of clients. I've seen this in the past and it really makes employees hate you.
Burnout - Don't always ask your employees to stay late, work weekends, do work at your house, etc. A number of people have trouble saying "no". You will lose these people as they will eventually burnout.
Fun - I think it has been to fun at work, at least sometimes. This includes socials outside of work. Maybe a barbeque for your employees and their families?
Relaxation - This field tends to be one that doesn't lend itself to regular vacations. You can't exactly have people covering your clients for you.
Health Insurance - I was thinking in a generally healthy workplace, a high-deductible plan might work best with employer contributions to FSA/HSA. This would be considerably more affordable than other options. ** Tax deductible
401k Retirement plan - Probably wouldn't offer matching, but I don't know many fitness facilities that even offer a 401k plan.
Paid time off - I was thinking of close my facility officially for 3 weeks out of the year. Employees would be expected to take this time off and would be paid a standard rate during this week. This would force people to take some time off and would limit problems with scheduling around peoples' vacations.
Profit sharing - This would keep employees interested in the long-term productivity of the business. I don't know what I would do exactly, but say owners kept 40% of the net profits and the other 60% would be distributed to employees once per year. The share that each employee would receive would be based on years of service, productivity (% of gross that the employee is responsible for), and other projects that they have worked on that might not be as easily quantifiable.
Free classes for immediate family - pretty self explanatory.
Non-compete - I don't hope to control employees, but I think a fair non-compete could help you avoid people coming in to try to steal your ideas/systems. I'd probably look at something to the effect of 1.5 years and 8 mile radius. I'd also look at what would be a fair agreement to prevent employees from soliciting clients if they are fired or leave. Something like 2-3 years. I would need to research this further. All of the things I listed above are what keep GOOD employees around. However, those who have malicious intents need to be kept at bay as well.
My thoughts have always been that you don't sign the non-compete unless the money and benefits are there. If I'm paying a trainer $35,000 a year (with potential for more $ with profit sharing) with benefits, I would expect them to sign a non-compete.