It Takes a Village - How a Team Will Help You Succeed Faster, and Build a Stronger Business

Are you a one woman show?  Do you feel that you have to "do it all"?  You find yourself making the decisions, answering questions and emails and trying to come up with ideas yourself.

We are going to talk about why team is necessary if you ever want to grow your studio.  If you are using the excuse "I can't afford to hire anyone" you should be asking yourself "I can't afford NOT to hire anyone".  

Here is why:

1. One of the first team member you should invest in is your admin/front office staff.  Think of this as the gateway to you!  They can filter easy questions, listen to gossip in the waiting room (so you can nip it in the bud) OR listen to complaints so you can rectify those problems, and help with daily studio tasks.

My office staff is the first ones into the studios, they check bathrooms, make sure the studio is clean, turn up or on air and heat, check phone messages, and so much more!  During the course of classes, they are the...

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Create a Killer Morning Routine and Slay the Day!

As the New Year approaches, what better time to create new habits?  And with 2020 being the doozy of a year that it was, I bet there are a lot of things we’d all like to change!

The way you start your day sets you up for success (or lack thereof) so it’s essential that your morning routine be killer! 

I have been reading a lot this year about how successful people design their mornings, and I have been extracting bits and pieces to create my own routine. 

Here are some things I am playing around with.


Charge it in your home office or somewhere else, but NOT in the room where you sleep.  Be sure it’s silenced.  Worried that you might miss an emergency call in the middle of the night?  Tell your loved ones to use your landline for emergencies.


Experiment with waking up 15 minutes earlier, each week until you get to a time that really suits...

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Easy Dinner Ideas For Busy Dance Studio Owners

Easy Dinner Ideas For Busy Dance Studio Owners

Those of us that have families know the struggle of trying to balance the studio vs family life.  I know for me it was either the studio thrived and the family failed or the studio failed and the family thrived. 

Through the years I had a really hard time with that balance, especially when it came to planning dinners!

Don’t get me wrong, I actually love to cook, but most days were spent running the kids around, planning my classes, billing, and all the other 500 jobs us studio owners do, then when 4 o’clock rolled around and it was time to leave for dance, it was only THEN I was like "oh snickerdoodles" (reality check, I was more like ‘oh f*$&’), there was nothing planned for dinner.  That was when I was like ‘breakfast for dinner’ …. Cereal it was. 

Cue mom of the year award!  Don’t feel guilty, we have all been there before! 

I have to say…...

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Trial Classes - Should You Offer Them?

Do you offer free trial classes at your dance studio?  Some studio owners love them, and some despise them. 

Your opinion might be that of being troublesome, too much work, the follow-up is confusing, and most students slip through the cracks because there are no processes. 

Personally, I think they are an integral part of building your student basis… IF they are done the right way. 

Let me take you through my process of trial students at my studio

- We have 2 types of trial classes.

  1. If an inquiry that we receive by phone or email is not quite certain about signing up, we offer trials on the classes they are interested in.
  2. We look at classes that have low enrollment and offer and advertise for ‘free trial classes’ on those specific classes. If you go this route, make it an event. We call ours “sparkle days” you can call it ‘princess trials’ or ‘glitter days’, you can even give a free gift like a tutu,...
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The Best Planner To Organize Your LIfe

This post contains affiliate links where we receive a small percentage if you purchase the product.

In this world of digital and virtual, I don't know about you, but I still love my paper planners and notebooks.  Maybe it's because I can hold them, use different colored pens, paste motivational stickers and tear out pages when I am done.  Call me old school, but there is something that holds me accountable when I use my paper planner!  I feel accomplished and organized every time I cross off another day completed.

So after years of purchasing planners, I have found one that I am in love with!  I have been purchasing this for the past 4 years faithfully.  I remember seeing planners for $50-$60 and saying to myself that's insane, fast forward a few years down the road, I don't blink twice about the price knowing I get a planner that is customized for ME, helps me reach MY goals, and reduces MY stress (because I have everything written...

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Why You Need An Acro Program At Your Studio and How To Start One

Why do you need an Acro program at your dance studio? 

There are a multitude of reasons why an Acro program can benefit your existing dance program at your studio, let's look at a few of the reasons:

1. It will give your dancers an edge with increased strength, flexibility and the ability to execute a variety of tricks as well as increased technique.

2.  By adding an Acro program, you can grow your student population offering something other than dance.  You will have students that solely take Acro classes and not just dance classes.  

3. You can upsell acro classes to your existing dancers.  It's different and beneficial other than another type of dance class.

Let's look at the numbers.  In my studio for example, we have had Acro/Gymnastic classes for years.  I never really pushed these classes and on any given year we were lucky to have 10-12 kids in ONE class.  A few years ago I changed the landscape of our Acro classes, advertised and...

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Child Protection Clearances and Do You Need Them For Your Studio?

Do your instructors have child protection clearances?  Does your state mandate them?  Even if they don't, it's a good idea to make sure all of your staff have background checks to protect you, your business and to mitigate risk.

My studio is located in Pennsylvania.  Pennsylvania has very strict child protection laws.  Parents can't even volunteer in school without obtaining child abuse and background clearances.  Other states also mandate these checks if anyone over the age of 18 is interacting with anyone under the age of 18, whether it's teaching, volunteering, and/or working.

Even if you state doesn't require these clearances, it is a good idea to make sure all of your instructors have background checks along with child abuse history clearances.  This makes sure you are hiring the best possible staff for your studio and also reassures the parents that they are sending their children to a safe facility.

Because our state mandates these...

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5 Love Languages and How They Can Help You Communicate More Effectively With Your Staff

Did you ever hear of the 5 Love Languages?  It's based off of the best selling book "The 5 Love Languages" By Dr. Gary Chapman.  This book can help strengthen relationships with your spouse/significant other, children, employees and family. 

His philosophy of the 5 Love Languages is built off of the premise that different people with different personalities express love in different ways.  By understanding which love language everyone on your team reacts best with, allows you to help everyone on your team feel truly valued.

Lets look at the 5 Love Languages:

1. Words of Affirmation - This person uses words to affirm other people.

2.  Acts of Service - For these people, actions speak louder than words.

3. Receiving Gifts - For some people, what makes them feel most loved is receiving a gift.

4. Quality Time- This language is all about giving the other person your attention.

5. Physical Touch - To this person, nothing speaks more appropriate touch.



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DSO Connect's Favorite Things

Today we are going to talk about some of our favorite things.  These are things we cannot live without on the daily, they help make our lives a little easier and more productive.  

This post contains affiliate links, when you purchase through these links DSO Connect receives a portion of the proceeds.


Robin loves her essential ginger oil that she drops into fizzy water for a mid-day pick me up or to kick start her morning.  One of her favorite brands is the Doterra Ginger Essential Oil.  Another product that Robin uses everyday is her Bulletproof MTC Oil that she puts into her smoothies for a mental jolt of adrenaline.  This assists in her productivity for the day, giving her sustainable energy and focus.

Amanda has three favorite things.  First, she cannot live without her Apple Watch.  She has the freedom of seeing and responding to texts, changing her music during class and so much more and all hands free.  Her second favorite...

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The Never-Ending Drama Around Placement

It happens every year, despite my best efforts.  I am sure it happens to you, too.  I send out the dancers’ placement for the fall and inevitably, there is one parent that loses their grip on reality and shows a side of themselves that is so hideous that I wish I had never seen it!

But wait, before you assume that I just sent out placement emails all willy-nilly, throwing caution to the wind, let me take it back a step. 

In January (yes JANUARY) I have 30 minute, one-on-one goals meetings with our company dancers and parent, to discuss the work the student is doing in class, whether they are on track to reach their goals, and what they can be doing to improve.  I make it very clear that NOW is the time to be doing the work. 

Prior to placement being released, I send a masterpiece of an email (if I may say so myself) to all the dancers, explaining that there are 3 rungs of the ladder in each class, and a dancer must achieve success on each rung before...

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