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There are 2 things as a studio owner that you need to make running your studio easier, and let me tell you right now the answer is not a bottle of wine and a glass to drink it with.
The answer is we need to make your studio simple to run and scalable to grow.
What you’ll find is that if you’re able to bring simplicity, beautiful, beautiful simplicity to every element of your studio it becomes so much easier to grow and attract more students because your time is not sucked up by those greedy little time-grabbers.
In fact, I want you to write this down for me. “Complexity equals cost.”
If you have a process such as inputting new student information but it’s kind of really detailed and tricky, it costs you time in wages you’re paying your admin staff.
Every time you’ve got a really convoluted process of how you’re paying your teachers, it’s taking up your time as well.
The simpler we can make everything in your studio, the easier everything becomes.
Let’s start by making things a whole lot simpler for you. I want you to go grab a notepad and find a lovely little comfy spot on the couch. We’re going to do a mind map. Grab a big notebook and in the middle write the word, “Clunky.”
We’re going to find out everything that is clunky in your studio. Write this in big words in the middle, put a circle around it, and then I want you to write everything that’s not flowing for you in the studio, everything that is annoying you, everything that you’re like, “Ugh!” That’s really frustrating you every time you have to do it, it’s not smooth, it’s not easy.
You could write down everything from how we’re collecting payments, it’s manual, we’re having to reconcile them in the bank account, too hard.
You could work out that communicating with parents, they’re not reading their emails, that’s really frustrating you.
Teacher absentees, how you’re kind of scheduling makeup classes.
All these things that are annoying you, I want you to get everything out of your head. I’ll give you a bit of heads up in advance that because we’re going to get into the kind of grungy dirty side of running the studio it’s going to feel pretty heavy to begin with but just keep going.
I did this exercise recently at a live event and people wrote pages.
It was quite funny, actually. They just wrote reams and reams of what was frustrating them, what was clunky in their studios, but you get to a stage afterwards when you’ve got it all done, you’re like, “Oh! I feel so much better.”
It’s very cathartic. Let’s get everything that’s annoying you down on paper and then you’ll be ready for the next step.
Now just take a bit of a deep breath and let’s celebrate all the clunkyness.
It’s fantastic. There’s no point keeping our heads in the sand. Let’s just acknowledge this is what’s not working right now and if you have a little look at the list that you’ve written you’ll start to see that there are definitely trends that we could fix. We want to start looking at the list you’ve written.
What is the root cause of this?
Potentially, and usually, when we do this activity you’ll find that maybe it’s transitioning to online payment collection would change a whole lot of your enrollment processes to simplify and streamline a lot of time. Otherwise it might be having another person do 3 more hours of admin work a week would actually simplify a lot of your time as well.
I want you to look for one of the trends and what could you do to simplify a whole lot of the clunkyness in your studio.
Look at it from other angles
The next thing to do after this is to look at it from lots of different angles. I want you to look at your list and look for the solutions from different perspectives.
Look at it from a teacher perspective. How, for your teachers, could you make this simpler for them?
From an admin perspective, how could you make your administration processes simpler?
From a parent or a student perspective, what would make their life easier in their dealings with the studio?
The more that we can look for simplicity, look for the simplest version. It’s going to give you so much more confidence in how the studio runs.
It comes back to that point I mentioned earlier about complexity equals cost.
On the flip side of that, simplicity gives you the scale.
If you look at the most successful studios you’ll find they’re not offering 50,000 different programs catering to everyone’s needs. Usually they have a few core programs that they have systemized and simplified to such a beautiful degree that they are easy to understand, easy to market, and easy to manage.
This is what we’re seeking in your studio, when we can bring all that beautiful simplicity to how you run your business it’s going to give you so much more peace of mind and growth in your business.
Your task for today is to dive into the clunkyness.
I want you to shine a light onto all the grubby, grimy little corners in your studio. Find out what’s not working, what you’d like to improve, get it all down, and then you can start to create a bit of an action plan to solve the clunkyness, to simplify your studio.
If you can find like 5 major trends, 5 major big clunky areas, and just allocate them 1 a month. “For this next month I’m just going to solve this bit of clunkyness, and then next month work on the next bit of clunkyness.”
It’s a great way to solve the problems in your business and bring back the ease and flow into your studio.
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What is feeling completely clunky for you in your studio? I want to know in the comments section below what your clunkiest clunker is.
What’s the real bit of gunk in your studio that you’d love to streamline and simplify? Share it below.