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It happens anytime you get a group of studio owners together. “Kelly was a really great teacher, but she quit on me. I can’t seem to get good teachers to stay. What is wrong with them?”
There is a really good chance that it’s not the teachers.
Below are four things I have discovered that cause teachers to move on to greener pastures. If you find that you are doing (or not doing) any of these, you will need to change in order to get and keep the best teachers available.
1 – Failure to invest in teacher development – Some studio owners don’t feel that it is necessary to invest in things like further education, retreats, conferences, etc. for their teachers. Others feel that it is the responsibility of the teachers to do those things, without any reimbursement. This is insane.
Your teachers deserve to be invested in as much as new flooring for your studio or a new student acquisition marketing campaign. Don’t expect the best teachers in the world to stay the best teachers without some nurturing and care. Continuing education programs are important for making sure that your teachers stay the best in the business. Retreats are a great time to learn, as well as for your teachers to unwind.
When your teachers don’t feel appreciated, they are much more likely to seek new employment.
2 – Putting a leash on teachers’ creativity – Forcing your teachers into a box that prevents their creativity can cause you to lose them very quickly. Dance is art and artists don’t like to be forced to live by someone else’s vision.
Let your teachers spread their creative wings and create art, they will be much happier overall. This doesn’t mean that you can’t collaborate on pieces, but allowing artists to create, will make a much happier environment for everyone.
3 – Avoiding touchy conversations – When you avoid having difficult conversations, there is a slow but steady build-up of pressure until everyone explodes.
These conversations can be hard and awkward, but they are much easier to handle if taken in small pieces. It is much simpler to talk about one uncomfortable issue than to wait for there to be twenty things that have to be dealt with. Waiting for those conversations will lead to a very angry teacher and an opening in your team which could lead to you having to fill in classes and a potential loss of students.
4 – Not leading or over-leading – Leading your team of teachers with too loose of a hand or with too firm of a hand will cause your team to fall apart. Many Dance Studio Owners either over-manage or under-manage their teachers.
A great leader knows when to lead their team and when to let them do their own thing. This is usually not an instinctive skill. Take the time to learn the best ways to take care of your teachers. Always look for new ways to guide your team without being too overbearing.
These four mistakes are a major part of the reasons that studios lose great teachers. Avoid these problems and you can have a team that is strong and stable. That stability can help your studio to become the go-to studio for potential dance students in your area.
Have an awesome week,
P.S. If you want to eliminate empty dance classes you can register here to this month’s workshop on 6 ways to grow your student enrollment in January.