Happy 2014 Everyone! Can you believe another year is already upon us? Where did 2013 go?! Well, now that the eggnog and decorations are put away, time to get down to business and take this opportunity to think about those things on our list we’d like to accomplish for the season ahead. While we all can admit, many times New Year’s Resolutions are short lived, it is still a great time of reflection to consider what you hope to accomplish for your business and where you aim to take your students.
While it may seem daunting at first to try and accomplish everything, prioritize and go slow! Slow and steady wins the race! Nobody ever achieved success or maintained longevity by doing things half-way or rushing thorough it, so remember to stay on track but take your time. Think things through thoroughly, from every vantage point. Be detailed. Be specific and never settle. My motto, “Do or Don’t Do!” It consistently has to be a 110% mindset or…why bother at all?! Soon enough you’ll be checking each thing off one by one and meeting your 2014 goals! And if you don’t meet all of your 2014 goals, be kind to yourself! Don’t look at it as a set-back or failure but more as a jumpstart to 2015! ;)
To help get you started, here are some things to think about as get you going towards a year of fruitful success for the studio and amazing progress for your students!
Goal Setting: The most important to start with. Goal-setting is the pre-cursor for getting organized and creating an outline for yourself and your team. Take your time with this and think about things like:
- *Where do you want to take the studio?
- *How do you intend to increase the studio’s revenue?
- *What are the goals for your students’ progress? What role does your faculty play?
- *What performance experiences do you want to provide for the dancers this year? Are you exposing them to a variety of performance venues? Are they performing for the community and outreach programs?
- *What does your summer curriculum look like? Are there summer intensives? Guest teachers and master-classes? Trips into the city as a group to take classes? What can you realistically provide students while creating exciting and fresh challenges to keep pushing them to progress and experience new things?
- *What does the following fall 2012 season look like for you? Are you planning on expansion? How? Adding faculty? Adding to the curriculum? OR….do you anticipate the need to down-size the number of classes/teachers to make a profit? While you may have to fine tune these things when the time comes and reassess, it’s good to have a game-plan going in and project ahead on trends you have seen this year and what you anticipate from your initial outline.
Looking at the Budget Ahead: Begin to look at your annual budget and what you have to work with regarding marketing/ publicity, studio repairs, costumes, faculty raises/end of year bonuses, etc. Where do you deem it necessary to immediately allocate funds for the studio? Prioritize from there and work backwards.
Faculty Assessment: This is a great time to look at your current faculty and assess whether or not they are fulfilling the mission you have set for your studio. Are you all on the same page? How are your students responding to their teaching style? Are teachers punctual, professional and supplying your students with the relevant lessons and training they need in order to advance? At the same time, are they providing a light and nurturing environment where students enjoy coming to class and are challenged with knowledgeable, artistic and informative content?
Marketing & Publicity: This is a great time of year to think about how to increase the studio’s publicity and bring in new business. Think about using social networking, updating your website, community fundraisers, community events in the spring, local newspaper or radio interviews. Also, consider what sets your studio apart from the others in your city and use it to your advantage in your marketing approach.
Training & Curriculum- Begin to consider your curriculum for the upcoming months and following season. Where would you like to see it go? Is there any area to which you feel is lacking? Do you need more classes of one genre and less of the other? Are there new areas of training you wish to add? What is the next level for your training curriculum?
- *Consider master classes, guest teachers and workshops on a regular basis to bring in new perspectives and styles for your students to learn from.
- *Do you have an adult demographic? Which adult classes will you be offering?
- *Are you competing this year? How many competitions will you attend? Which competitions do you feel most comfortable with? Who will be in charge of doing that kind of research? What competition will create the most positive experience for your students yet challenge them and allow them to see their peers perform?
Professional Development: What areas of professional development are you providing for yourself and your faculty? Think about upcoming business seminars, conventions, master-classes for teachers, conferences, accreditations you would like to partake in. While you may not be able to attend them all, think about what will work best for you and your staff in meeting the outlined goals you set for yourself in the start of the year! (I hear the DTW Conference in Las Vegas has all these things for you and your staff ;))
Re-Vamping the Space: Look around the studio. Is it time for new floors, mirrors, a paint job, new lockers, a new waiting area, a dance library, etc.? While this may be something you decide to tackle over the summer for the start of the next season, start to account for it in the budget and think about what is most important. A new space is always a great and energetic way to get the positive energy going, so think about what will be inviting, professional and ergonomically effective for your studio and student needs!
GOOD LUCK & HAPPY NEW YEAR!
See you in the studio!
* For further info on Jessica Rizzo or to contact her, go to the “teacher profile” section or to www.jrizzo.net