I remember when I opened my first Martial Arts School… I was teaching class, answering the phone, taking out the trash, and signing up students all by myself. Most school owners start out in this scenario, and unfortunately most get stuck and continue to operate in this scenario.
You have to ask yourself some questions: How long do I plan on doing everything myself? Did I plan on running a business or owning a business? If I got sick right now, for an entire week and could not get out of bed, what would happen? Would business continue as normal for that week, or would all hell break loose? What about 1 month?
Nobody will care about your business as much as you and (although many come very close) they will always fall short in their passion and dedication. This fact must be accepted. You have to be willing to let someone else do an OK job at cleaning the toilet several times until you can teach them how you want it to be done. You have to accept that when you put a new staff member in charge of the front desk they will bomb some sales. You have to learn to accept the fact that they are NOT as good as you.
I believe business owners make the same justifications I did for years: “I can’t afford to let someone else sign a new student up!”, “I can’t afford to let (instructor X) experiment with the warmup because students will quit.”, “I’ll just clean the mat myself, because if you want something done right you have to do it yourself!”
Welcome to being a One-Man-Show! Look forward to years of working day in and day out doing the same repetitive tasks, limiting your student body growth, and living like a control freak. Watch awesome potential staff members come and go because you didn’t provide them with an opportunity for growth. Put all your eggs in one basket, and assume you will have the desire and ability to kick and punch every single day for the rest of your life. Sound like a good plan? I didn’t think so.
We want to establish our school so that we teach the classes we enjoy, we still have time for our family, we can take a day or week off when necessary, and we perform the tasks that are most productive and enjoyable to us because we want to; not because we have to.
How do we transition from a One-Man-Show to a delegating tasks and getting the pressure off our back? Most importantly, how do we do this for low or no cost? Most school owners in this position cannot afford to hire a staff member because they are stuck in the transitional phase. There are many FREE options to accomplish this even if you cannot afford to hire someone and we will discuss this in Part 2.
By Jeremy Molley