Mar
06
2013
COMPETITIONS: THE GREAT, THE GOOD, AND THE UGLY
Written by Lori Shecter

Competition Good Bad Ugly

Many schools often question the advantage of offering competitive dance at their studios. From multiple sources, here is the great, the good and the not so good feed back from around the web:

THE GREAT

We are in the business because we love it but, dare I say, also to make a living from it thus, competitions:

  1. Opens up your school to more students that are interested in this arena.
  2. Allows for areas to increase revenue: in entry fees, costumes, privates, pre-requisite and requirement classes.
  3. Gives you something to post, tweet, and pin about
  4. Is fun for students
  5. Is good for students who learn about sportsmanship and value of winning and losing
  6. Helps you bond with parents

THE GOOD

  1. Helps students develop team work skills
  2. Teaches students to understand responsibility and committment
  3. Increases your level to school cheerleader, coach, moderator, team leader
  4. Keeps you in the trenches with your students

THE UGLY

  1. Students having "queen bee" attitude and bringing their whole drama along with it.
  2. Parents feeling entitled to have their child dance to whatever song, whatever routinue and use whatever costume they want their child to have.
  3. Lots of EXTRA time, effort, energy, and paperwork 
  4. Students who are not in teams feeling left out.

But we are not going to just stop this entry without a few words of advice on how to deal with the ugly!

SOLUTIONS

  1. QUEEN BEE: this is a great opportunity for your school to stand out from the crowd when it comes to "attitude" management. We recommend that your team meet regularly, etc. problem-solve, delegate the to-do list, plus celebrate little victories. This gives you the chance to mold your students to be the leaders of the future...not the complainers or back stabbers.
  2. MOM BEE: again, a great opportunity for you show your ability to be a leader and negotiator. While a disgruntled parent can be a symptom of unmet expectations you can't control other people’s reactions, only your own. Make sure that you have all your rules and requirements clearly posted on your website or in a package of material once the student join's the team. While the parent(s) may be unreasonable (DANCE MOMS!) you can quell the fire by making sure you have time to hear her feelings and encourage her to feel comfortable talking to you--validation is the key (not agreeing!)
  3. PAPERWORK BE GONE: With School Empower's new online school management system, collect competiton and costume fees and schedule privates upfront BEFORE the season starts.
  4. NEW TEAM LEVEL:  It is encouraging to allow lower level students the chance to compete, or those students who are involved in many after school activities that limit rehearsal. Creating a team especially for the less trained student opens a whole new world for those who never dreamed they could compete. This generates good will and will definitely open up areas for your teachers to have privates. Everyone is happy!

We hope this post helps you in your COMPETITION ventures!