Re: Huge Decline in Quality
I agree - I think the dialogue is fantastic... but to quit over it? Seems like a cop-out to me. I wrote up a response on his blog... here it is reposted. My question - do you want to be part of the problem, or part of the solution?
Wow - lots of dialogue here. GREAT! While I agree with what you said in many ways, you are merely stating the facts of the business model that Coach Glassman chose in establishing CrossFit. The way I see it (and believe me, I don't know all the answers here either), quality, knowledge and overall experience at CF Affiliates worldwide looks like a bell curve. You have a few at the very top, the vast majority in the middle, and a few at the very bottom. That's just the way it is... and who is it that decides this "ranking?" - the market. The best not only survive, but lead the way, stay out in front, consistently innovate, are creative, and elicit incredibly great results from the people they train.
I used to have the same concern as you do... and what I've come to realize is that what you're describing takes place in ANY service industry that doesn't operate as a franchise. Is there a difference between one stock broker and another? You betcha - even though they use the same stock market... and what about one graphic designer from another? Of course... even though, for the most part, they all use the same tools, computers and software.
IMHO - Coach Glassman's business system is genius - it allows for individual creativity and innovation, encourages entrepreneurs, rewards excellence, and provides us all with the BASIC operating system that works - CrossFit. What and HOW you use the BASIC operating system is your business.
Now, as a participant in the CF Affiliate community, we all have the choice - do I leave the community that has been responsible for the entire existence of my business and livelihood for the past 4 years because I am not happy with the overall quality of the Affiliate community? Or, do I find a way to be part of a possible solution, using my knowledge, experience and creativity to propose solutions to problems, enrolling others in the community in my ideas, standing for and with the people that are part of this great community, and helping raise the bar for everyone? Personally, I'm up for option #2.
On that note, I think that our entire community could use an injection of quality... pushing the entire bell curve to the right... how is this done? One idea - add an exam at the end of a Level 1 cert to actually make the certification mean something other than just "I paid & attended". Or call the Level 1 Cert a "CrossFit Seminar". I'm sure there are many more ways to do this, but this isn't the time and place to discuss.
I understand and respect your choice for option #1 above... however, though I don't know you personally, for a person with the obvious passion, knowledge and experience you have, I think you took the easy way out.
I guess it's also possible that CF will have to lose some great people before "it" is open to listening to community opinion and making change.
CrossFit Los Angeles