I can now say that quitting my job to focus completely on Bachata Passion, was the best decision I ever made. Because it gave me the drive to make this succeed no matter what. If you think that quitting 1 job meant more time to rest, definitely not. Actually I was working more hours than before, but at least I did not have to divide my attention and energy. All my focus, everything was now on BP.
Working full-time for our own business meant working 7 days a week and crazy hours. In fact it meant office hours during the day and teaching all the evenings. Sometimes it was difficult for people around us to understand how we could choose to be working 24/7 on our own business. But, for us this was exactly what we loved and preferred to do every day. We had a clear goal in mind and enjoyed building this together. Of course, there were days one of us was not as enthusiastic, or we had setbacks that made us feel like giving up. But that is why I am so grateful we can do this together. We could always motivate and push each other to continue and get back up!
Fast forward through years of working on this together. Teaching, coaching, dancing, growing our team, taking risks, trying new things and continuously chasing new goals. We are sure that it is our insane commitment, this desire to be the best we can be and to get better every day. That helped us grow our dance school from a hobby to now a Dance Academy with 4 locations & online classes. Also growing our teachers’ team from just Geno & me teaching to an amazing team of 22 certified BP teachers. Along with growing from doing all the administration & office work to expanding and hiring an office staff.
Secrets to our success
Now what is this secret recipe to growing your hobby to a business? I believe it is made up of these two things:
Drive / Commitment
For me it is the passion of teaching. I love seeing growth in our students, and get energy from bringing people together and by putting a smile on their face. People dance for all kinds of reasons. However, after a day of work you can see that the moment they get to our classes they can let go of everything they were dealing with all day. To give our students the gift to just enjoy dancing, enjoy learning something new and enjoy the process of getting a bit better every day.
But teaching is not my only passion. Ever since I was a little girl, I was known for taking the lead and organizing everything. Now I am able to combine my passion of teaching and interaction with our students with my other passion for organizing and structuring! It is exactly this combination of office, teaching and dancing that makes every day different. I love how this challenges me in different areas and continues to make me grow as a dancer, as a teacher, as a business owner, as a partner, as a person!
Our focus and our mission haven’t changed. It is exactly this that has helped us create a strong brand, because people know what to expect. What we have grown to be known for is that: If you really want to learn how to dance Bachata, all-round and learn how to dance with everyone; then Bachata Passion is the place for you! Keeping this in mind, we learned that we must stay true to this, and not try to make everyone happy.
There is plenty of people looking for a dance school just to dance 1 hour a week to have fun and not focus too much on technique or go into depth. This took me some time to accept that this is OK. That there is a place for everyone but that Bachata Passion then just is not the place for them. I have learned that they are better off at a different school. This way we can focus all our attention on our like-minded students. And make sure that we stay good at what we do and stay true to what people expect of us.
Everyone can do it!
Looking back on how we got from hobby to business as I have written it down in the last 3 blogs, I am convinced that what we have accomplished anyone could do. Because who would have thought that a Political Science student that only started dancing Salsa & Bachata at age 22 would grow to lead the biggest Bachata Academy in the Netherlands? If you have the drive & consistency, you can make anything happen you set your mind to. It certainly worked for us. Therefor I am convinced it will work for you too!
So, what is it that YOU are scared to try but would secretly love to go for?