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Towards a new *non*-business model (thanks Mike G)


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I am trying to develop a new business model.

I will be Trade Marking the Monkey Gym (read more here) over the next little while, and as I think about how to steer this fledgling enterprise, I need your input as to the key IP (intellectual property), concepts, and marketing points. May I have your responses, please; this is a WIP (work in progress).

Some of you have already taken on the MG ''brand', partly or in association with a name you already use. My concept of how this might expand, and might bring us all an income in time, is to facilitate the setting up of MGs in a number of locations, and not charge for that (so no licensing or franchising fees). Instead, we will be requesting that each MG owner use and promote the brand; facilitate and host a workshop for me each year or two, and that we consider how the different skill sets of each of you might play into that - I am thinking of speciality workshops that each of you consider presenting in your own area of expertise (Olivia: gymnastics; Cristina, Gyrotonics; Nolan: sprint development; Andrew: Olympic lifting and Kettlebells, and so on).

As I have mentioned to a number of you, if fortune favours what we are trying to do, then in two or three years, in addition to hosting various workshops, you might consider kicking something back to HQ if the concept and brand are working well for you. Perhaps this is completely idealistic, but I want this to be 100% voluntary. Crazy? Probably!

At MG HQ here in Canberra, we have systematised the body of knowledge into Beginner's, Intermediate, and Advanced (so, class structures that can be broken down into 'terms' that make sense in your environments; as an example, we use 14 week blocks because they fit University semesters; others may use 8 or 10 week blocks).

As well, we have organised Two-day "Introduction to the Monkey Gym" workshops that will be trialled in the U.S. this year (Sydney's forthcoming workshop in Chattanooga; the first one we ran in Italy was a sellout, and the results were outstanding and just so much sheer fun.

If I can have your responses, any responses, no matter how weird of wacky, I will be grateful. All responses gratefully received—positive or negative. The deep reason I am trying to develop this 'anti'- or non-business model is that all the other ones I have seen just don't work: licensees and franchisees don't ever seem to be happy. On the other hand, hosting workshops is something you all already do, and presenting them and developing new material is what I do—I see this as a wonderful example of synergy, and that's the model I am interested in. Whover said that business and pleasure can't be mixed—well, humbug.

Warmest regards to you all,

Kit Laughlin

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  • 2 weeks later...

As an "international person" who travel and work in different countries, I would value the possibility to train in monkey gyms all over the world. I would like it if the monkey gyms (MG) were somehow connected. If for instance I were a member at the MG HQ I could be able to train with a discount in the US for a limited time, or vice versa. My point is to emphasise the sense of a community, where the MG is the link between people from different countries and continents. A list of MG and contact details could be presented on http://www.pandf.com.au/.

Regarding the different areas (of expertise) I think that a strength and stretch worskhop for rock climbing people would be quite interesting. Maybe a climbing trip in Australia, Thailand, Spain or elsewhere could be combined with a worskhop.

-lin

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This sounds like a great idea for those who travel and we would certainly be open to that. As it happens there is a lot of rock climbing in Alicante, Spain where we are setting up and one of our target groups for the monkey is the rock climbers. Hoping that when we get Kit over we can do one or two tailor made workshops for specialist like you suggest

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Hello Lin,

That is a great idea, and we will do that. In the meantime, and as I know everyone who has, or who is setting up an MG, I know that you would be welcome at all of them, without any formal arrangement in place. This is also still true for the Stretch Therapy where, as you know, anyone who does a workshop with us is welcome to come and visit, and do as many classes as they want (and that's free, too).

Perhaps when we get really large we will have to institute some formal arrangements, but in the meantime, to anyone considering travelling to a country that has an MG, to simply email or PM the owner and ask if you can work out there.

Agree 100% about the rock climbers, too (many Canberra MG people are rock climbers).

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  • 1 year later...

Hi Kit,

I am looking to set up a MG here on the Gold Coast. I have recently taken on a full time venue where I had previously just been hiring space for my martial arts classes. Now being full time I want to incorporate Stretch Therapy and MG into the space.

I will be attending your 4 day work shop in Canberra in June to up skill (a lot).

Any advice to get started is greatly appreciated.

Regards,

Marc.

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  • 6 months later...

Hi Kit, Olivia, and fellow monkeys,

Here are some images of the 'monkey bars' we had built for our zoo on the Gold Coast. Next we hope to organise framework for the trusses in our ceiling and hang some 6-8 metre ropes.

post-1001-0-59409000-1378620538_thumb.jp

post-1001-0-24994200-1378620563_thumb.jp

post-1001-0-33095800-1378620587_thumb.jp

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  • 5 months later...

Hey Zach,

We don't do franchise programs my friend; we basically give it away for nothing, apart from the cost of the training itself. We will help you set up your gym in terms of letting you use our brands, posting your details in our main site, etc., and all those kinds of things and, if/when it is successful (after two or three years), if you feel like kicking back some money to headquarters (us) to keep it all going, we will be very grateful. We think 5-10% is the ballpark.

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Read about the "50 year test" HERE. Nothing's worth sacrificing one's humanity for, and we will all be dead sooner than we want! :)

So, giving away knowledge is a blessing for me, not a trial. This is what we are here for: to do something useful.

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  • 6 months later...

Hi Kit,

further to email the other day,

I have sought out a scout hall with an available evening in the week and will start running sessions in a month or so. I am planning to take the work i have done over the last few years, that as we discussed, has a number of overlaps with ST and MG as well as anaerobic endurance kettlebell work based on Pavel's kb models.

i will be doing sessions with Graham in Fitzroy while i look for a space that can accommodate MG style work rather than the smaller space i am currently using.

So, count me in and i'll see you asap for further trainjng.

i have worked up a series of progressions for strength development, they undulate and are periodised, but i would be really interested to compare notes/see the MG progressions as i move forward into this.

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