Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in entertainment but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Mitchell McGinnis, Owner of 601 Studios, Music & Arts Academy, located in Jackson, MS, USA.

What's your business, and who are your customers?

We are a music and arts academy in Jackson, Mississippi, and we provide lessons and classes in piano, guitar, voice, drums, acting, violin, art, brass, and more. Our customers are families with kids and teenagers interested in growing their musicianship and artistry, and we also have a solid number of adult students.

Tell us about yourself

I have always been musical since I was very young, and performance has always been an innate passion of mine. I realized in my 20s how much I enjoyed teaching, and I started pursuing a career in private voice teaching by attending Westminster Choir College in Princeton, New Jersey, in 2019. While there, I taught at a local music academy on the side and experienced the joy students brought with them to their lessons each week. I began exploring what it might look like for me to bring a similar experience to my hometown in Jackson, Mississippi.

I began surveying families in the area, and I got a crazy positive response to the idea. There was obviously a need and desire. Student progression and instilling confidence in students are what motivate me. As a studio, we consistently reevaluate our methods and practices so that students get the most out of their lessons.

What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?

As a business owner, the rate at which 601 Studios has grown is most definitely my biggest current accomplishment. When people ask me if I'm happy with how it's doing, I always answer, "it's growing and functioning at a rate that I could only have hoped that it would."

What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?

Any business in which you depend on others is hard. You are constantly trusting your gut and intuition when you hire, and you have to motivate and trust others to carry out a vision that YOU are most passionate about. So, trust. And also knowing when it's time to let someone go.

What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?

  1. Find your balance of facts and intuition when hiring, as my business coach says. "Most people will show you their true self the first time."
  2. Gain a sense of objectivity in your business. It's easy to lead emotionally, but you have to separate it from yourself if you want it to succeed. Your business isn't your worth, and your worth isn't your business.
  3. It is possible to be confrontational and also kind. Being direct is the best route when problem-solving, but you can advocate for your customers and staff at the same time.

Where can people find you and your business?


If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.

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