How Chris Clawson envisioned himself in the president’s chair at Life Fitness

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Chris Clawson, president, Life Fitness
Chris Clawson, president, Life Fitness

Consumer Products and Services
Chris Clawson has had a passion for the sports and fitness industry from a young age, and that has carried him through life and ultimately helped him get where he is today.
When asked what he wanted to be when he grew up, he never hesitated in his answer, “A professional baseball player.” He got to play professional baseball in the single A league for the Braves and Astros.
Then in the off-season, he got into the fitness industry. But it was after he started working at Life Fitness that he was identified as a “high-potential” employee. Company President Augie Nieto, co-founder, asked Clawson what he wanted to do with his career. Clawson said to Nieto, “I want to be sitting where you are.” Nieto told him step-by-step what it would take.
Clawson received his master’s degree and proved his leadership qualities at Stamina Products, Matrix Fitness Systems and Johnson Health Tech. In 2010, Life Fitness came back into his career. Within months of his return, he was sitting in Nieto’s former chair.
As president of Life Fitness, Clawson shares his passion about the company with its people. As long as his employees are willing to grow and learn, he will continue to push them to make the company the best in its industry.
Three times a year, Life Fitness customers come to their facility for an experience tour. They may come expecting to receive a sales pitch but they get just the opposite. They see how the company “makes wine” and learn the Life Fitness story. At the end of every tour, the customers have an affinity for Life Fitness and say the people blow them away.
Clawson invested heavily in product development and research knowing that Life Fitness would be prepared for consumer needs when the recent recession was over. When the market turned, Life Fitness sales increased and have continued to increase at record levels.
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