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I recently met with Adam Zeitsiff, CEO and President of Gold’s Gym. It’s been just under a year now since Adam stepped into this role, but it’s not his first rodeo with the brand; he previously served as Gold’s Gym’s CIO from 2016-2018.

While he was called to serve briefly as CIO for international franchisor Smoothie King in the interim, Adam let me know right away that the chance to return to Gold’s Gym as the organization’s CEO was an opportunity he quickly jumped on, albeit not because of the title… Rather, Adam was eager to return to Gold’s Gym because it gave him what he calls “a rare second chance at pursuing my vision for growing an organization I’d become passionate about in a past role.”

Knowing the widespread awareness that comes with the Gold’s Gym name – which currently has 700+ locations across six continents – I had to ask Adam: What exactly is that vision? How do you plan to grow a company that already has 96% brand recognition?

Given Adam’s CIO roots, I shouldn’t have been surprised by his answer, which was simply “continued innovation.” He explained further…

“Brand recognition is great, but it is not guaranteed if you don’t maintain relevance. Think of companies like Apple, Amazon, and Netflix… You’d be hard-pressed to find anyone who hasn’t at least heard of these brands, yet each brand continues to bring more to the table through innovation. They’re not settling into being comfortable with high brand recognition or achieving certain metrics. No – they’re pushing the envelope through consistent innovation, and that lends to their continued success.”

Adam went on to share that one of his favorite quotes as a leader, and a mantra that he’s holding on to in his current role, is “innovate or die.” Leaning on his background in technology, Adam is confident that there is more his brand can offer in the years to come to really elevate the Gold’s Gym experience both for its customers and for its franchisees, specifically in the digital space. He expands a bit more on this logic in his recent LinkedIn article, “With Risk Comes Reward.”

So for now, Adam’s vision for the future of Gold’s Gym can be simply described with one word: Innovative. As for all that entails, we will just have to wait and see what’s in store next for Gold’s Gym with Adam in the driver’s seat.

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