Sunday, March 03, 2013

The "Third Place"

The following is one of my fav articles from strength coach Alwyn Cosgrove:

Starbucks has changed the service industry forever. They took a commodity — the coffee bean — and transformed it into an experience. I’ve studied them since the first day we opened our gym, and continue to do so.

Consider this — in the last fifteen years, the value of the S&P rose 200%, the Dow rose 230%, the NASDAQ rose 280%, but the Starbucks stock?–5000 percent!
Despite that tremendous growth – Starbucks has maintained it’s quality while expanding at a current rate of 5 stores per day, 365 days per year.
There is a concept known as the “Third place”. Most people have work, home and one more place that they spend time. It’s the idea behind the “local” in terms of the pub culture in the UK (as embodied in the TV show “Cheers” – ‘where everybody knows your name’…”).
The coffee shop (as seen in the TV show “Friends”) has become that – actually more specifically – Starbucks has become that for most people.
That’s why I study them – as I want my gym to become that “third place” and overtake Starbucks.
Do yourself a favor and pick this book up immediately — and then STUDY it! We recently interviewed the author of the book – Joseph Michelli – for our coaching group.
I’ve mentioned this book before, but I re-read it on a recent flight. If you’re in the service business — or you own a studio — you need to forget about just looking within our industry for ideas — look outside of your industry.

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