Finding your crew of amazing teachers is an essential aspect of building your studio. But once you find your dream team, how do you help them feel connected to one another? Forging a strong, authentic bond with and between your instructors not only builds morale and encourages accountability, it makes your studio a fun and comfortable place to be—a vibe that students and clients definitely feel. Community at your studio starts from within, so we’ve rounded up a few easy (and low cost!) ideas to foster connection amongst you and your staff.
GET CURIOUS WITH EACH OTHER
Besides being awesome at what they do, how much do you know about your staff? It’s important to know what drives your instructors, to be able to relate in a meaningful way. Take the time to sit down with your teachers to learn about their backgrounds, their passions and what’s happening in their lives. Consider scheduling regular check-ins with each of your staff to maintain an open line of communication. Once you know a bit more about where your teachers are coming from, use what you’ve learned to encourage bonding between different teachers. If one instructor has a dance background, and another spent years in musical theater, ask them to collaborate on a music playlist for your upcoming studio event. Create regular staff meetings that cover more than just studio policy—try coming up with creative conversation prompts or activities to get dialogue going. A safe and encouraging space will help your instructors share their experiences, challenges and wins.
INVEST IN THE RELATIONSHIP
How can your staff raise each other up? Nothing says community like supporting each other inside the studio itself. Suggest that your staff take one another’s classes—offering your teachers free or discounted memberships to your studio will encourage bonding as your teachers work it out in each other’s classes. Sharing each other’s classes on social media will help promote one another and encourage their followers to try out both classes and invest more time at your studio. Those who sweat together, stick together! Consider also offering mentor opportunities with senior instructors, and brainstorm how each teacher can share their strengths.
WORK TOWARD A COMMON GOAL
Striving for the same desired result will create a group sense of purpose. Working on a certain sales goal? Share it out with your teachers! Get them involved and listen to their ideas. Are you trying to fill spots on your upcoming retreat? Make sure your staff knows all the details and that they’re sharing it with their students and friends. Ask your instructors to participate in your initiatives, offer incentives to get them excited about opportunities within your studio and let them in on ways they can help. Often, the sign of a good staffer is someone who wants to be an active part of your studio on all fronts, so give them this chance to shine.
Make staff get-togethers a regular occurrence. If you decide to host bi-monthly advanced lectures or trainings, ask your teacher’s advice about what they’d like to explore. When you introduce new equipment or programming, make sure all staffers get a chance to try it out. Don’t forget to have fun, too. To encourage socializing, opt for studio happy hours, potlucks or holiday parties. Also consider getting outside the studio too with day trips or group classes at other studios in your area.