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Kovar Systems
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The Value Of Tracking Useful Metrics

By Dave Chamberlain

Today’s blog comes from one of our amazing Satori Business Success Coaches and company CEO, Dave Chamberlain. 

Consistent Effort over Time.

One of the cornerstones of Kovars since our founding 38 years ago, is analyzing the metrics of our business and it is largely what has propelled us to averaging 350 students and $50K in revenues in our eight locations.  

The stats we analyze in 2016 are largely different than what we looked at in 1978 because as the industry changed, what we measure to understand how we were doing changed.  However, we do not track stats just to look at numbers.  If the results we track didn't provide us with an ability to learn and improve, we would stop tracking them.

We still measure the big four - revenue, profit, number of students training and personnel costs, or wage line.  However, we also look below the surface, so to speak, to find hidden gems of data that can help us in understanding how we can improve. 

We also measure:

  • Retail revenue - we want to achieve a goal of 5% of total revenues, but we also want to have on-hand, what students want and need to be able to train safely.
  • Other revenues - birthday parties, karate camps, weapons seminars ...  We want to ensure our schools are allowing students to have outlets for social engagement and opportunities to learn more about certain martial arts techniques and weapons.
  • The wage line as a percentage of revenue - our goal is 27%.
  • Facility costs as a percentage of revenue - our goal is 16%.
  • Conversions - a rolling three-month average from inquiry to enrollment - 60% is our goal.
  • Net New - new students minus quits = Net New - as many as possible is our goal.
  • Quit rate - also a three-month rolling average - less than 3% is our goal.

These seven categories are tracked for all of our eight KOVAR'S owned schools and posted in our monthly leaderboard, which rewards points depending on each school's place against the other seven schools in each category.  The top school in a category receives one point, 2nd place receives two points and so forth through 8th place.  The school with the lowest point total is declared the winner of the Leaderboard for that month.  

The Leaderboard and all the stats involved have a great effect on how we see our schools and where gains, losses and improvements can be applied. It’s important that as you run your school, you continue to track all aspects of your business that will allow you to evaluate and gauge your work. If you work solely in a vacuum of moment-to-moment business you do a disservice to you AND your staff because you end up keeping yourself in the dark to what could potentially be just a stone’s throw away from success. Knowing your stats, means you know your business.

See next week for a follow-up blog  Part II: The Value Of Tracking Useful Metrics on other key metrics we use to run our business.

Own a thriving martial arts school, be the school in your area that stays open all year round. Our team is ready to set a plan for your business success, make an appointment today to secure your future.



Dave Chamberlain is a seasoned senior executive with experience in high-profile corporate environments and fast-growing start-ups. He is a proven leader with a consistent track record of success. Prior to joining Kovar's Satori Academy, he held executive management positions at Gateway Computer and IBM. Mr. Chamberlain found his way to Kovar's after his daughter began as a student in one of the Kovar's Academies, shortly thereafter Dave Chamberlain began training. He has since earned his 2nd degree Black Belt and is training for his third.

Dave Chamberlain joined Kovar's in 2006 and now serves as the CEO working side-by-side with Kyoshi Kovar to make Kovar's and their clients successful. Mr. Chamberlain brings a wealth of both small and large business experience to the table. When coupled with his passion for Martial Arts and the belief that it can and does positively impact the lives of those who train, he remains a strong advocate for the Martial Arts Industry.

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by Dave Chamberlain