Are frameworks a useful tool outside of the context of education? Absolutely. A little while ago I was asked to provide business solutions for a gym located in a small town. The owner of this gym wanted to generate more business and he had a vision of promoting a healthy lifestyle within the town; for him a gym was not only a place where people exercised, but also a place that people could incorporate in their plan to maintain a healthy and balanced lifestyle. The framework below illustrates how this goal would be accomplished, with the townspeople coming together to support each other in their vision of healthy living, with the gym “Oxygen” in the center.
The framework places Oxygen in the middle, since it is the central hub for healthy living. The branches stemming outward from the circle are areas of reciprocation where the gym would promote other healthy activities and lifestyle choices around the town; for example, the gym would promote spas, healthy meal selections provided by restaurants, promote and assist with the P.E. programs at the elementary and secondary schools in town etc. In exchange for Oxygen promoting these businesses, they (the other businesses) would promote Oxygen as the gym of choice. The gym would not only offer a great selection of indoor classes and equipment, but also organize outdoor activities that people could join as part of their membership – such as a running group, a snowshoeing group, etc.The trainers would look at the whole person and their lifestyle when designing fitness programs and could not only recommend a workout plan for the gym, but could also incorporate their clients’ other outdoor and indoor interests into their fitness plan. Trainers could also offer a selection of healthy meal options from participating restaurants in town and other healthy living options from participating businesses in the above framework.
In this framework of reciprocal advertising, not only would the gym increase their clientele by word of mouth from participating businesses, but the gym owner could also realize his vision of a town where the community came together to support each other in making healthy lifestyle choices – from the schools to the restaurants and wineries to the hotels and all other participating businesses – stemming down to everyone living in the town. A true wellness mecca!