Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Kara Felmlee, Founder of Dance Arts Gillette, located in Gillette, WY, USA.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
We are a classical dance studio teaching Ballet, Modern, Jazz & Contemporary to students ages 5 to Adult.
Tell us about yourself
I have been in the dance industry for over 25 years and have both teaching and professional dance experience. When we moved to the great city of Gillette, WY, I felt compelled to fill a need that was not yet meant in our community to offer a classical/conservatory-style dance curriculum with a strong emphasis on technique and Concert dance/theater performances. What makes owning a dance studio so rewarding and fulfilling is none other than the students themselves. They inspire me to be a better dance teacher and a better person every day.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
I hope my biggest accomplishment is making a difference in young people's lives. Our studio aims to offer a safe space where students feel valued, respected, and cared for so they can thrive. Our Mission is to support and inspire students as they move through their Journey of Dance while teaching them valuable life skills such as discipline, work ethic, self-confidence & camaraderie. We use the Art of Dance as a platform to help students achieve success in whatever their future desires may be.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
GREAT QUESTION. One of the hardest parts of owning a business for me is wearing all the "hats." I am the owner, the bookkeeper, the cleaner, the graphic designer, the content writer, the proofreader, the show producer, the office manager, the accountant, the travel agent, the choreographer, the problem solver, and finally (my favorite hat) the dance teacher!
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Research your market.
- Find mentors, many, many mentors.
- Have the most in-depth thought-out business plan, and BE READY to pivot and change anything in the plan! haha.
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
Before starting your business, I think it's important to get clear with yourself on how YOU define success. Is it monetary, is it philanthropic, is it personal, is it community-driven? Whatever that answer is for YOU, be sure every choice YOU make aligns with that goal.
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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