What inspired this particular blog post?
Over the Summer I received numerous emails from young dancers wanting jobs (at my studio) and over and over again my jaw dropped.
I received countless emails where the copy insinuated that they’d be doing ME a favour if I hired them, I had two address me by the name of the studio owner in another suburb and one plaster semi-naked shots all over her resume for my perusal…
On that note, studio owners don’t need to know your height, weight and eye colour. We’re not offering cruise ship or Moulin Rouge contracts. We’re looking for a dance teacher!
It’s also important to remember that dance teaching is not the same as dancing. An employer wants to know why you are interested in working for the education sector of our industry. Don’t simply list all your performance accomplishments. A studio owner wants to know that you can TEACH and lead a group of students.
Don’t have any teaching or leadership experience? Are you sure about that!? Don’t overlook that year you helped teach Pre-Primary Ballet at your local studio or the fact you were a babysitter during Year 12. Perhaps you were the leader of th Under 8’s basketball team during school. All of this is actually valuable information and demonstrates an ability to manage and work with children!
To be honest, I think those that read this blog will find the below list common sense. However if you know a friend or family member currently trying to break into this industry, maybe send them this post as.a little nudge in the right direction.
- DON’T start your email with ‘Hey there’ or something equally as casual. It’s extremely easy to find out who the studio owner is and address them by name.
- Remember that potential employees will definitely look you up on social media. I have a very simple rule; if you don’t want Grandma to see it, don’t post it.
- If you receive a response, don’t take weeks to respond. In fact, I believe you shouldn’t take longer than 24 hours to respond.
- Don’t say in the email what you DON’T want to do (eg. “I don’t want to take baby ballet…” or “I don’t do Fridays”) because you should simply state what you DO enjoy and what classes you enjoy taking.
- List your qualifications. Any responsible studio owner is going to prioritise your qualifications for ‘teaching’ dance over experience performing in live shows or with famous vocalists. We want to know that you are educated in delivering classes and interested in personal development and continued learning.
- Check if the studio where you’re applying for a job runs open or adult classes. Go along, introduce yourself and most importantly PAY to do class. You’re not only showing them that you’re open to continued training and learning, but you’re also showing them YOU CAN DANCE.
- Use a template on CANVA to create your resume. It’s much more exciting than a boring, white word document.
- Offer to come in and teach a class for free so that they can see your style. Over the last seven years, I’ve only had two people offer this and I hired both of them.
- Be honest about your availability and expectations of length of contract. Most studios expect a teacher to be reliable and stay on for the year. If you’re actively seeking work in live performances and filling in time with teaching, then be honest with your employer. If you’re not honest, teachers and studio owners talk and when you’re no longer performing and want steady work it will be difficult to get a job because you left people high and dry.
Hope this helps!
Grit & Grace,