Combining Passion with Business: Stephanie Schon’s Journey with The Bar Method


The Bar Method will celebrate its 24th anniversary in 2024. Over the course of 2+ decades, we have innovated to ensure our brick and mortar and digital studio delivers on consumer demand. Much of this transformation can be attributed to the leadership of our Brand President, Stephanie Schon, who steered The Bar Method through a global pandemic, and maintains our brand’s position as a frontrunner in the boutique segment.

Stephanie is in a unique position in a unique brand – according to, only 35% of senior leadership positions are held by women and only 31% of franchise owners are women.  Yet here we are with The Bar Method 91% female-owned; 100% female operated; and 98% female clientele.    

Stephanie's start in franchising began with a desire to leverage her extensive business experience while making a positive impact on local communities. Recognizing the underrepresentation of women in franchising, she saw an opportunity to not only grow professionally, but also to uplift fellow female entrepreneurs. Her choice to specialize in fitness stemmed from a deep-seated enthusiasm for health and wellness, a decision that has profoundly shaped The Bar Method into its current success. And what better partner to collaborate with than a brand that is dedicated to emboldening women who are always in the pursuit of their best self?

Stephanie joined The Bar Method in November of 2020. “I’m a firm believer in combining passion with business experience. To take that next step, I decided to pursue franchising with a focus on fitness. I was excited to lead a brand where I felt an emotional and physical connection,” Stephanie told BizWomen. Under her leadership, the brand has increased franchisee satisfaction, grown average unit volume, completed a rebrand, innovated product offerings, enhanced technology, and more.

Joining The Bar Method during a time of global challenges presented its own set of hurdles. Stephanie faced an immediate test of her leadership skills, yet her strategic background and execution allowed her to maneuver through the difficulties with grace. To remain competitive in the fitness industry during the pandemic, Stephanie played a pivotal role in evolving our brand to make our workouts even more accessible for members through virtual classes. Through the Bar Online platform, members can access hundreds of on-demand classes to complete a workout when it best suits their schedule. The hybrid option allows franchisees to retain members who might otherwise freeze their membership during travel.

Stephanie’s approach to leadership is characterized by a deep understanding of the importance of stakeholder success. She measures progress not just in financial gains but also in consumer satisfaction, trial, and engagement. This approach has allowed us to adapt and thrive in an ever-changing market.

Despite any challenges that may arise, Stephanie remains committed to pushing herself and her team to new heights, recognizing that continuous refinement in work and fitness is a necessity. Her dedication to enhancing overall class experiences and serving members is evident in the brand's continued success. Looking forward, Stephanie is leading our brand into new territories, with plans to expand our footprint both domestically and internationally. She is also spearheading classroom and teacher training innovation to meet the evolving demands of consumers.

For those looking to enter the franchising industry, Stephanie encourages others to, “embrace challenges and believe in yourself.” Her leadership not only propelled The Bar Method to new heights but also established a groundbreaking standard for successful female leadership in franchising. If you're seeking a brand deeply committed to empowering women, that’s driven by scientific precision and expert guidance to achieve tangible results, we invite you to explore opportunities with us.