Madeline Ross is a passionate businesswoman who was driven by her vision to nurture a change of lifestyle. Addressing one of the most vital concerns which is health, she founded SuperSlow Zone one of the leading premium and welfare franchise that specializes in personal strength and balance, strong bone health and Type 2 Diabetes programs and many more health beneficial programs. The global presence of SuperSlow Zone LLC defines Madeline’s success as an inspiring businesswoman. We are thrilled to share her journey in this exclusive article as we learn the business from the expert herself, Madeline Ross, Founder and CEO of SuperSlow Zone LLC.
What were dreams and aspirations while growing up?
I was going to be a ‘Dance Therapist’…LOL…so I could use something I really enjoyed helping others. I was then going to be an Environmental Lawyer [until I worked as a para-legal and learned it had very little to do with ‘justice’…]. Finally, my very conservative Dad asked, “Looking ahead, do you want to be a teacher, secretary or air stewardess? I said, “No, Dad, I am going to be board, Chairman of the Board.” And so I am: helping others, doing things I really love and leading 3 companies.
What led to the foundation of SuperSlow Zone, LLC?
I was working for the Institute of Directors [IOD], London, England, which enabled me to work for various companies in 9 countries. I grew very dissatisfied with how senior executives treated employees, the awful behavior of some executives and they still got their ‘golden parachute’ on the way out…finally, that I was not really helping others [even though I love the travel, diverse cultures, etc.]. So committed to changing this.
What led you into the franchise industry?
Two things. I knew I wanted to offer services that enabled people to help themselves. And I had a seasoned franchise expert ask me if I had considered using franchising for the service I wanted to bring to the world. After research and developing a team to explore the concept I created, we plunged!
What were the initial challenges and setbacks you faced? How did you overcome it?
Two big ones.
- Accreditation: Our first service was ‘SuperSlow Zone personal strength training’. I knew the ‘personal training’ industry was an undisciplined mess! I was going to position as a ‘professional service’ [like a physician, attorney, CPS, service.] Professional services are governed by ‘accreditation’ [both to get their license and required continuing education]. I got expert help and we achieved accreditation by IACET.org the same year we opened our first franchises.
- IACET accredits the National Institute of Health, American Physical Therapy Association, Centers for Disease Control, Duke University Medical Center, Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) Corporate University, GE Healthcare and many others.
This means we founded our second business, SuperSlow Zone Institute. It is the education arm of our franchise.
- Shareholder Lawsuit in Years 3 and 4 : Our initial investor was one of the princes of the Emir of Qatar. I got wind of a likely hostile takeover so I sued them first. They sued me and SSZ. And away we went into a horrible legal challenge. We are a very organized company so responding to them happened in rapid time. At one point, my two attorneys, who had just completed a lunch meeting with their attorneys, came to my office and basically said, “They have more money than you can imagine, they are mean, they want to take your company. Settle.”
I told them, “I know my body is crying but I want you to ignore this and listen only to my words. ‘I am going to win’. How? “I will buy them out.” And I did…sounds so easy and put together now…but it was really, hard and awful…but I did it!
As a woman in the franchise industry did you feel it was difficult to survive.
No. I cut my teeth in the high-tech and manufacturing industries. I was seasoned at surviving and thriving. Same hard challenges working internationally. Franchising has been a piece of cake regarding this compared to my previous experience. PLUS, there are so many incredible women helping women, helping everyone, in franchising.
Is the franchise industry a common career path for women?
I don’t have the numbers on this. It should be.
How has franchising helped the growth of SuperSlow Zone?
First, franchising embodies one of my most important principles: mutuality = ‘has to work for you, has to work for me/us’. SSZ Corporate wins when the franchisees win [first]. And, of course, mutual accountability meaning we are tied at the hip in all aspects of business and as good people. The International Franchise Association, our primary industry association, is the best in the world.We just completed our 60th annual convention;the education, technology resources, etc….all-round help is best in class. Period. So helpful and supportive.
Franchising is a landscape of adventure, growth and development for me personally, our team and all the stakeholders…while doing something we feel passionate about. I/we get to address our struggles, weakness and fears [an inside job] with the support of others while doing good for the world. We all like this.
Tell us in brief about the services of SuperSlow Zone
We Have Three Companies:
- SuperSlow Zone: premium wellness and exercise studios [franchises] in USA, Turkey and Colombia
- SuperSlow Zone Institute: education engine of our brand
- SuperSlow Zone Technology and eCommerce: central services support for our brand and all thing technology
Maximum, Measurable Results In Minimum Time
5 Services – All Delivered One Accredited, Certified Instructor with One Client
- Personal Strength & Balance: 20 minutes, 2 x/week
- Strong Bone Health: 15 minutes, 1 x/week
- Lower A1C: 15 minutes, 1/x week
- Healthy Eating/ Weight Loss: 12 weeks
- Healthy Slimming with UltraSlim: 45 minutes, 8 sessions
Our Glorious, Primary Clients: ages 40 – 85+
- Busy people/general exerciser
- Medical exerciser: helping people with 52 medical health conditions/injuries
“Not A Gym” – A Premium, Professional Studio
- Personalized program focused on results
- One instructor with one client, continuously [no classes]
- IACET accredited certified instructors
- No membership fees or long-term packagesWhat is the business growth strategy of SuperSlow Zone?
Our Growth Journey Strategy will accomplish maximum help for our client in many countries, establishing a very profitable return for investors and franchisees and creating retirement wealth for our franchisees and front-line staff.
How do you define the growth SuperSlow Zone over the past few years? (Can be explained with statistical data too)
Intentionally slow and stable. I know the challenges for our franchisees. At different times, I have intentionally paused sales to new franchisees because we needed to fix some things. Once fixed, I would re-start franchise sales. I will always pause franchise sales, at any time, if I need to, so that we can strengthen our weaknesses before we accept additional franchise owners. Always a team effort.
It is my job, with the franchisee’s help, to bring them the best branding, marketing, technology systems and service solutions possible. Of course, these are constantly changing given the tsunami of technology change. It is the franchisee’s job to deliver exceptional services and care for each client individually every visit. Additionally, they must provide consistent meaningful-to-our-client measurable results.
Our franchisee studios run as an 82% to 92% annual client loyalty rate [retention]. They earn this with each client…every visit. This is the engine for recurring revenues and long-term profitability.
What is your vision for the company?
For Our Clients:
BE STRONG, HEALTHY, LOOK AND FEEL GOOD AT EVERY AGE.
For Our Company & Stakeholders
Maximum success and profitability by caring for our clients. Wealth creation as a natural and focused result of doing good for and with others. Lots of personal growth and fun along the way. Effective global contribution.
Is the franchise industry a competitive one? How does SuperSlow Zone deal with this competition?
Absolutely. Bring it on! We have an ‘all-hands-on-deck’ approach. Our company engages the following. Most importantly = listening to the ideas, insights, desires, aspirations and complaints of our clients to push the boundaries of our competitive advantage. This is entwined with internal and external help from advisory groups, CEO groups, and professional associations.
Finally, reading, and hunting for insights, innovations and ideas for our brand from medical, wellness, biotech, technology, anti-aging,research experts and award-winning news sights. Finally, surveys of staff and franchiseesby external resources.
Give us a brief of your life before SuperSlow Zone
Worked since age 12. I have large multi-national corporation experience and entrepreneurial experience. Prior SSZ, I was the CEO of Gylanix Institute where I designed business systems that are now implemented in SSZ franchises worldwide. Through the Institute of Director [IOD], London, England, I worked with companies throughout Europe and Latin America. As Marketing Manager of Borland International, we grew to $10 million in gross revenues company within 10 months.
Tell us about your roles and responsibilities as the CEO of SuperSlow Zone and how does it make you feel?
I LOVE WHAT I DO!!! Even working though doubts, fears, roaring business challenges and personal patterns that don’t serve me and others…well, I love it when I am through these. LOL. Equally important, and very fun, is ‘reading/listening to the world’ to bring innovation and care for our clients…more and different than they expected. My primary role is the above. This of course includes strategic growth, capital to grow and working with the right people.
What are your greatest achievements?
Our greatest achievement, as a company, is helping thousands of people be accountable for their strength and health, with our fine expertise. Our clients also look and feel good – whatever that means to them. Our clients are the fragile of the fragile, peak performing athletes, busy busy professionals/breadwinners, seniors who want to live in their home as they age, kids, moms…the whole human enchilada!
Additionally, I am very proud of working collaboratively with our franchise owners, teachers and students/frontline staff. One of the toughest things is to create a culture where people can feel confident stating concerns and complaints. I personally address every complaint. And, I insist that everyone says what IS working, what is wonderful and ‘thank you’ …gosh…such a simple yet powerful thing, ‘thank you’!
I am proud we made it through our shareholder lawsuit in years 3 and 4…it didn’t kill us! Woohoo! And that we are in 3 countries, we keep evolving our brand services, we are committed to ongoing education for everyone and finally, we go after the best technology as the ground for the best human care and expertise.
How do you manage to balance your personal and professional life? Describe yourself in one word and tell us what inspires you?
Dogs inspire me. I travel everywhere with my two dogs, Bella [terrier, 12 lbs] and Dixie [yorkie, 3 lbs]. They fly, uber, bike, trike, mass transit, Air BNB, hotel, grocery stores, board meetings, attend 10,000 person conventions – you name it and we go together. I feel a deluge of love all day long with these pups. And, they make everyone so happy [at least dog lovers…not so much the cat lovers]. We are a dog friendly company [employees can bring their dogs to work] so each day we have 2 to 5 dogs at work. Just love it!
In addition to dogs, what inspires me is helping people help themselves. Being on the hunt to find, refine, innovate how to do this through our company is very wonderful and pure fun. As a member of Toastmasters International, I compete weekly and at the district and state levels, in public speaking. As a past Trustee of, and continuing as a member of Florida Executive Woman, we support women’s education and success. I love Latin and ballroom dance, singing, African drumming, Toastmasters, improv…and anything outside.
What keeps you and your employees motivated?
Learning how we help clients. Wow. Incredible stories. Deeply inspiring to all of us. On-going education, learning from and with each other, a positive environment and culture and knowing we can mess up, fess up, fix it and move on.
“None of us is as smart as all of us.”
What does the future of SuperSlow Zone look like, globally? How do you plan to widespread the company services in the franchise industry?
We will continue to grow in the USA and add additional countries. I do this through the IFA and the Hero Club. The International Franchise Association [IFA] is THE premier, global franchise association. We just had our 60th annual convention. The help and expertise is immense. Anything I need, I can get through the IFA. The Hero Club is a private CEO membership group. Both of these are my go-to resources for help, innovation, support, trend-futuring – I get and I give back. I am currently working on expansion in Canada, Latin America and the Middle East with a wonderful team I met at IFA.
She is a go-getter and she motivates her team with the same passion that she is led by. Madeline Ross has phenomenally transformed the health regime for people making it simper and convenient. Her journey is truly inspiring, and we are proud of her exceptional success as a businesswoman in the franchising industry.