It is the time of year for hiring new teachers, can you believe it?! It is almost as if you weren't busy enough planning summer, going to competitions, and gearing up for recital. Now you have to worry about finding and securing great teachers for next year, isn't it kind of cruel when you think about it all?
Each studio has their own challenges that they will face but never the less, it is still extremely important to find great teachers. The dance teachers at your studio spend a TON of time with your students. Having superb educators ensures you have happy families that will come back and sign up for more classes. We have put together 3 tips to help you hire the RIGHT teachers for your studio. We have also put together a FREE BONUS for you at the end, so don't miss out!
- Get to know your brand. Before you even start your search take a long, hard look at yourself and your studio: What are your values, what community you are serving, what makes you different than other studios in the area, what are your current teachers good at, what are you missing at your studio, etc. When selecting teachers it is SO important that you hire people who want to carry out your vision. For instance, if you would love to grow your modern program but your current teachers can only teach beginner classes, you may want to tailor your search to an advanced modern teacher. Or if you run a very conservative program you may not want to hire a teacher who prefers to use more mature (in content) music. You have to know where you stand before asking anyone else to jump on board.
- Have them teach a sample class. At our old studio, we would ALWAYS have candidates teach a short modified class (maybe 30 minutes). No matter what someone says during an interview, you will not know how they teach until they...well... teach. It only would take about 10 minutes for Meg and I to figure out a candidate's teaching style and for us see how they interact with the students. It almost always produced a gut reaction, either OMG yes, we loved them or NO WAY. The students taking the sample class always provided some good insight after the class as well.
- Don't be afraid of coaching a younger, less experienced teacher. Now I know, it is by far easier to hire a teacher that has a ton of experience and can jump right in BUT there are a few perks to hiring a less experienced one. Now, before you go crazy on me, I will say: it has to be the RIGHT person. If the candidate is a strong dancer, is open to learning (this is key), and is a great fit with your studio, then why not hire them? The advantage is that you get to teach them how to teach. That means you will teach this person how YOU would like them to conduct their classes, how YOU would like them to interact with parents, and what syllabus YOU would like them to use. You as the studio owner will get some really great opportunities to mentor this person into becoming a really great teacher for YOUR studio! Some of our best teachers were young and inexperienced when they started with us. Heck, I was young and inexperienced when I started teaching at our studio and I'm so glad my sister took a risk and hired me! She showed me what the standards were at her studio and I quickly learned. I like to think that years later I am a pretty good teacher and it is all thanks to her taking a chance!
So are you ready to go get some amazing teachers lined up for next year?? I hope so but to make it even easier for you I have made a FREE interview questionnaire filled with some of our favorite interview questions for dance teachers. All you have to do is print it out and fill in the candidate's answers. It is an amazing tool when comparing candidates especially if you have more than one person conducting the interviews.
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