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World Gym Taiwan

All-In, Winning and Winning BIG!

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  • World Gym - Keelung, Taiwan
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Since my college years, I have enjoyed playing the game of Poker. As an amateur, I've played in numerous medium-stakes tournaments over the years (maybe a few cash games, too). The game is exciting and fun, but it can also be extremely nerve-racking, especially if you go "All-In" (betting everything for the chance to survive then maybe winning big). Playing Poker, you will learn things about yourself, and if you really study, you will learn things about others and how to read all types of people.

Going All-In in Poker, however, is very different than going All-In in life. In Poker, yes, there is plenty of skill involved, but there is also blind luck that can tip the scale. In life, once again, skill is required to place yourself or a business in the right positions for success, but I don't believe that 'blind luck' is the right term to describe fortune that befalls one who has put themselves in those positions for success. In other words, in life, one makes their own luck through pure determination, drive and the will to win.

No doubt you have heard of World Gym, but maybe not all who read this will have heard of World Gym Taiwan. Whether or not you have or haven't, this story is for you.

Michael Sanciprian is Owner and CEO of World Gym Taiwan, along with business partner, John Caraccio. And, in this story, you will learn how Michael and John went All-In, Won, and then, Won BIG!

Growing up in Sacramento, California, and despite a challenging childhood that came with being raised by a single mom, along with two other siblings in a tough area, Michael excelled in sports and stayed out of trouble, of which there was plenty to be found. Sports were his outlet, and this led him to the gym, as well as his first job in the industry at Jack LaLanne's. Later, moving up the corporate ladder at California Family Fitness and then branching out on his own in consultancy as well as an independent club chain, Michael decided to go All-In and bet on his skill and will to win in the "Wild East" of Taiwan.

Linking up with now business partner, John Caraccio, their partnership has built the predominant health and fitness club chain in Taiwan, and it is changing lives. "They are moving the needle." But, it wasn't always that way. Early on in the partnership, the world economy crashed, making things even more difficult for an already struggling company. In 2009, Michael and John found themselves at a TGI Fridays near closing time. Their waiter told them they were closing, and they said they would only be another minute. The goal of the evening was to figure out whether or not they were going to cash in their chips or bet everything one last time. In that last minute before needing to leave the restaurant, they looked at each other and knew what needed to be done.

Needless to say, they decided to truly go All-In. From Sun Tzu to Caesar, Michael and John "burned the boats," leaving them with only one option: Win or Perish (in a business sense, of course). The company survived, and since then, it has thrived. Now, known for his company's astronomical numbers, Michael's philosophy is a force in and of itself, and I invite you to read on to experience exactly what that means.

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