Education Is Everything at Elite

I started out as a dance teacher first. My love of dance and my passion for helping kids is what really had me wanting to open a dance studio in the first place. I wanted to share my knowledge of dance with others so they could benefit from my hard work and my love of the beautiful art form. But that wasn’t enough to own and operate dance studios for the last 18 years. 

My father taught me to be a student always. He said, “when you stop learning, you stop growing”. I will never forget that. I am a lifetime learner and have instituted this inside of the walls of Elite as well.

I opened Elite Broomfield in January 2003 and in February 2003, I attended my first dance industry conference. I did my homework and found the leader in the industry at the time who I thought I would learn from since I was brand new into owning my own business. I was a member of that group for 11 years and learned so much there. I went to events at least twice per year where I  was exposed to cutting edge techniques, administrative and technological developments and so much more. 

In 2014,  a new industry group formed and again I did my homework to see if it was something I should be a part of. More Than Just Great Dancing is an organization that I am so proud to be a part of. It stands for being industry leaders in providing “more than just great dancing”. I am a leader there and also a learner surrounded by 300 of the BEST dance studio owners every single week. The founder of the group has similar values and dedication to dance studios being their very best for our students and their families. 

I have just participated in my 8th Studio Owner University hosted by More Than Just Great Dancing. I was a main stage speaker and I was proud to represent as the leader of Elite Dance Academy. I have learned so much over the years and want to continue to give back to owners who don’t have as much experience in the areas where we are really strong at Elite. I am so proud of our continued drive toward improvement in every way. 

Last year and again this year, I will read no less than 60 books about areas where I want to grow, where I want my team to grow. 

Weekly, I choose at least one podcast to learn from. I have just joined a group called Master Class where I choose a random topic to learn about outside of all of my other learnings. 

This I know. I don’t just attend these industry group functions. I don’t just read the books, listen to the podcasts, participate in a master class and keep the intel in my head. I implement what I learn. I bring it back to the studios and teach our staff so that they can also continue to grow. 

Here are the many ways that I GIVE back to Elite staff and ultimately to you and your children. 

Every Spring, our leadership team puts together content for a summer staff retreat where we spend time with staff providing them education for a successful next season. We spend a few days with each other to really bring Elite to the next level. 

Every month, we have a Staff Meet Up where leadership focuses on at least one major area of the studio to brainstorm with our great minds to determine if there are better ways to do things rather than “doing things as we always have”. During these Staff Meet Ups, we review critical details with the team to make sure we are all on the same page of customer service for YOU, our families. 

Every two weeks, we host Director Meetings with our Team & Production Directors to provide them with education as well as support in their roles with our teams and productions to ensure super high quality service. Here, Directors ask questions and learn more about how to be GREAT in their roles. 

Once per month, Brandy meets with the administrative staff who work at the desk to give them education and support in their roles as well. We give them homework and morsels about how to improve personally in their jobs. She also observes them in their jobs regularly to provide ongoing feedback. 

Every month, Meghan, our Teacher Training Coordinator, observes teachers and provides them with immediate feedback about their classroom performance. She also allows them to ask questions so they feel super supported. 

Every Spring, Brandy hosts what are called “Stay Interviews” with each team member to talk about their hopes and dreams in their jobs at Elite to support future growth and development so that they feel a sense of pride in the work they are doing here. 

We host performance reviews for all of our staff based on benchmarks that are outlined at the beginning of their contracts so that expectations are clear and learning plans are developed. We provide honest and transparent feedback so they GROW in their jobs to rise up to their highest potential. 

Every week, I provide a leader education for all staff that touches on our vision, mission and values so that I can be the BEST leader I can be for them as a whole. I ask them prompting questions surrounding the education and ask for their feedback and responses to those. 

Every Monday, we also have a two-hour Leadership Meeting where all upper level administrative staff talk through what the important things are that are happening at Elite and how they are supporting those endeavors. 

After every major event, we survey YOU to see how you feel we did. As we head into planning for new seasons, we survey YOU to see what you want. We then debrief with our team to analyze what you tell us so we are ALWAYS LEARNING AND GROWING to be our best for YOU. 

This lifetime learning model that is our foundation is one of the reasons why we have navigated COVID so beautifully here at Elite. Innovation and rapid learning with things constantly changing did not scare us at all. We were ready for it and I hope you see and feel the efforts that we have put in successfully. 

No, we aren’t just like every other dance studio. We don’t just teach dance. We believe in being the BEST at what we do. We take it seriously. Because as my dad said to me, “if you stop learning, you stop growing.” We want to be GREAT role models for our students and feel that this is just one of the many ways to do just that. Thank you for letting us teach your children and for letting us be a part of your lives. We are grateful!!

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