Jon Shumate 0

Improve the late night customer experience for Lifetime Fitness in Roseville, CA

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UPDATE: Just wanted to say thank you to Rob Chemaly, Senior General Manager @ Roseville Lifetime, for coming through for us on all counts. Staff interactions are great now, and he even got us a midnight closing time as of 12/1/21. Well done sir, we appreciate you!


This is a petition to the management of Lifetime Fitness in Roseville, CA to improve the late night customer experience:

It's great to be back!

After a year plus of pandemic, it is truly wonderful to be back to a nightly gym routine, complete with the co-ed dry sauna session and outdoor pool swim. With a stressful job and putting kids to bed, arriving at 9:30pm is the best I can usually do, and once you started staying open until 11pm again, wild horses couldn't drag me away!

I know all of my fellow late night gym goers really appreciate getting back to this late night routine as well. Many of us have become friends over the years of nightly sauna decompression!

The problem

The late night staff are cool in general, but I've seen an increasing number of completely unnecessary negative interactions over the last month, all having to do with them trying to make sure we leave the gym as close to 11pm as possible.

None of us are trying to create problems, and for the most part are always trying to get out as quickly as possible, but it seems like the new night staff has been trained to be adversarial and impolite. It's creating a bad experience that really is completely unnecessary, and it's tarnishing your brand.

I've held off writing this for several weeks, but it's become a big enough deal to many of us that I wanted to bring this to your attention before it gets worse.

Here is a sampling of situations that have occurred:

A few weeks ago for example, we were told we couldn't get in the showers at 10:50, that is was too late. Later, I heard staff trying to set that cutoff time to 10:45. I witnessed a staff member turn a young sweaty kid away from rinsing off. He tried to turn me away as well but I just smiled and let him know I'd only be a few minutes. The kid was younger and I could tell felt awkward about standing up for himself, even though he really wanted a shower. He didn't get one that night.

I've seen and heard about this happening to many guys when there is often still 5+ minutes left before 11. It never goes well for the staff because most of us are adults and understand we'll be quickly out with no harm done.

Nearly every night I'm finishing my shower at 10:50-10:55 and a mens staff member will roll through the shower area yelling at us that it's time to get out. Putting young staff in the position of ordering older adults around, especially ones clearly trying to do the very thing they're asking, always feels a tad ridiculous.

Often these young staff are voicing the order in a less than friendly way, which as you might imagine, doesn't provoke a great response from those already trying to comply.

One last incident I'll mention to highlight how this can escalate:

About two weeks ago, a regular had finished his weight routine late and want to rinse off at 10:50ish. One of the mens staff told him it wasn't possible and to "have a good night". This well known and easy going regular let him know he'd been waiting to get in the shower but one half of them were blocked off for cleaning and the rest were full. The staff person felt his authority was challenged and belligerently repeated "have a good night".

This regular tried to reason with him and I heard this staff member keep repeating "have a good night" over and over in the most childish and sarcastic way possible. I heard him say it at least 10 times. It wasn't a good look for you.

Try to picture this: easy going guy in a towel who is calmly trying to reason with a fully clothed staff member who is trying to block him from rinsing off. It took longer for this staff member to showcase his authority than it would have taken for the rinse itself.

Any reasonable person would agree this sounds ridiculous.

Again, I'm writing this petition so that the situation doesn't escalate. I remember a time before the pandemic when mens staff actually pulled someone out of the shower naked because they felt their authority was being challenged. The police were called when it understandably came to blows after what was undeniably an assault. There were firings, a lawsuit that you settled, etc.

In my humble opinion, this is all due to extremely poor training procedures. Your training is putting your staff and brand in a bad position, making each night awkward at best, and adversarial and volatile at worst.

Suggested Solutions

1.) Don't put the night staff in the position of harassing people before 11pm. If we're in the locker room clearly getting ready to go, leave us alone entirely, even if it's 11:05 as the last of us are filing out. I'm sure this will be a big relief to the staff members as well.

2.) On the other hand, if someone is outside the locker room at 11, that's the perfect time to remind them politely it's time to leave.

3.) Don't block off half the showers for cleaning so that we're prevented from showering and leaving as quickly as possible.

4.) Bonus ask: before the pandemic, the night manager kept promising us that upper management was working on getting approval to stay open until midnight. Apparently, they got approval, but then decided to open an hour earlier in the morning instead. If there's any way we could stay open until midnight, I know the night members would greatly appreciate it! I'm pretty sure there are far more of us than there are people coming to the gym at 4am. I believe this would also drastically help the whole situation.

Thanks for reading, know that we appreciate you, we're just asking for a more congenial end to the night.

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