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Making Hard Choices Part 2: Hiring Teachers

Making Hard Choices Part 2

The other day I had the unpleasant task of filling out a wage garnishment form for one of my former teachers. Two years ago, my business partner and I finally had the courage to part ways with this person. Yet here we were, in 2011, still bogged down by the endless repercussions of not being clear and not knowing how to say no.

There is nothing worse for a business’ prospects than allowing the wrong people into it. Choosing people is not about knowing what you don’t want, but what you do want. Don’t make the mistake of settling for less.

In order to recognize those teachers who are not a good fit, we must first know exactly what kind of people we want to attract. We need people who will support our vision, hold the same values as us, and most of all reflect the kind of business we are trying to build.

Hiring The Right People
Whether you are just starting a studio or preparing for expansion, the first step to hiring the right people is taking time to get clear. Write down all of the qualities you are looking for in a teacher. What are you unwilling to compromise on? What values must be shared between the prospective new partner and yourself? Knowing or thinking is not enough. It’s too easy to let one or two things slide when you are sitting in an interview and desperately wanting someone to be the right person. Make a list, write a clear job description, and stick to it.

The biggest mistake you can make is to accept people into your business because you feel you have to. In the beginning of our studio we had a very clear vision, but we did not have a clear sense of what kind of teacher did and didn’t meet that vision. And because we had been rushed into opening and needed teachers badly, we settled for teachers who did not entirely line up with our values. Together, we all then lumbered down a road fraught with frustration and resentment.

Three Necessary Qualities:
1. Self-motivated – There is no other way to create a forward moving, motivated team of people than to hire those who are already motivated!

Interview Tip: Don’t ask expected questions. Dig deeply. Work to uncover the real person by asking them challenging questions that will give you insight into their values and motivations. Invite them to ask questions. If they don’t have thoughtful questions for you in return, that’s a warning sign.

2. Skillfulness and Ability – Require them to teach a demo. Don’t just take their word for it. Also get references from past clients, not just employers.

3. Presentation – They must be comfortable talking about what they do, why they do it and why a prospective student should do it too. This is one of the most difficult skills to teach and you shouldn’t have to. Hire teachers who are excited about what they do and can portray that to everyone.

Format

The other day I had the unpleasant task of filling out a wage garnishment form for one of my former teachers. Two years ago, my business partner and I finally had the courage to part ways with this person. Yet here we were, in 2011, still bogged down by the endless repercussions of not being clear and not knowing how to say no.
There is nothing worse for a business’ prospects than allowing the wrong people into it. Choosing people is not about knowing what you don’t want, but what you do want. Don’t make the mistake of settling for less.
In order to recognize those teachers who are not a good fit, we must first know exactly what kind of people we want to attract. We need people who will support our vision, hold the same values as us, and most of all reflect the kind of business we are trying to build.
Hiring The Right People
Whether you are just starting a studio or preparing for expansion, the first step to hiring the right people is taking time to get clear. Write down all of the qualities you are looking for in a teacher. What are you unwilling to compromise on? What values must be shared between the prospective new partner and yourself? Knowing or thinking is not enough. It’s too easy to let one or two things slide when you are sitting in an interview and desperately wanting someone to be the right person. Make a list, write a clear job description, and stick to it.
The biggest mistake you can make is to accept people into your business because you feel you have to. In the beginning of our studio we had a very clear vision, but we did not have a clear sense of what kind of teacher did and didn’t meet that vision. And because we had been rushed into opening and needed teachers badly, we settled for teachers who did not entirely line up with our values. Together, we all then lumbered down a road fraught with frustration and resentment.
Three Necessary Qualities:
1. Self-motivated – There is no other way to create a forward moving, motivated team of people than to hire those who are already motivated!
Interview Tip: Don’t ask expected questions. Dig deeply. Work to uncover the real person by asking them challenging questions that will give you insight into their values and motivations. Invite them to ask questions. If they don’t have thoughtful questions for you in return, that’s a warning sign.
2. Skillfulness and Ability – Require them to teach a demo. Don’t just take their word for it. Also get references from past clients, not just employers.
3. Presentation – They must be comfortable talking about what they do, why they do it and why a prospective student should do it too. This is one of the most difficult skills to teach and you shouldn’t have to. Hire teachers who are excited about what they do and can portray that to everyone.
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By · Posted on January 17, 2012 · Topic Business, Front Page

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4 Responses to “Making Hard Choices Part 2: Hiring Teachers”

  1. Jessica Parente on January 17th, 2012 11:27 pm

    Some really important points. I have definitely made similar mistakes in the past, and you can only learn from them. Teaching Pilates must be a passion as well as job, otherwise something is always missing from the lesson which has a snowball effect on the entire studio.

  2. Chantill Lopez on January 18th, 2012 12:47 am

    It’s so true. Sometimes not staying connected to what is at the core of your work can bring about all kinds of challenges. I know for us being able to clearly define our vision and our deepest commitments was one of the most powerful things we did for our business across the board. And when we have support from other like-minded teachers navigating these challenges can have even greater, more profound effects on how we move forward.

  3. tobie hall on January 18th, 2012 7:22 pm

    I just told someone today that I hired only two people since I opened 2 1/2 years ago that didnt work out. Each was around the same time that I lost an employee and I felt very insecure about not having enough employees. Also they both promised me great things, like “I will bring you lots of business.” It was so stressful because one was too analytical and the other anxious and neither of these fit my studio. I knew it and the clients did too. Needless to say they dont work for me anymore and did for just a short time. Not worth the paperwork…

  4. Pilates Classes Gold Coast on February 5th, 2014 6:34 am

    Its really nice article for me so stress in our daily life. I knew that every one need a yoga teacher.

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