Katerina Maskova
1 year ago

Four Key Lessons For Yoga Teachers Starting Their Own Business (oh yeah, that B word!)

Running a yoga studio or a yoga teacher training school is a business (in a literal and often legal terms). This means that money, time and effort will need to be invested by those of you who decide to start your own yoga businesses. We know that a lot of yoga practitioners and teachers are not very comfortable with putting “business” and “yoga” in the same sentence, but we thought that since Asanas For You is a tool that helps yoga teachers to run their businesses, it’s only fair that we share some of our lessons learned when starting our businesses.

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Running a yoga studio or a yoga teacher training school is a business (in a literal and often legal terms). This means that money, time and effort will need to be invested by those of you who decide to start your own yoga businesses. We know that a lot of yoga practitioners and teachers are not very comfortable with putting “business” and “yoga” in the same sentence, but we thought that since Asanas For You is a tool that helps yoga teachers to run their businesses, it’s only fair that we share some of our lessons learned when starting our businesses.

Having a great idea is not enough

Lots of people have great ideas every day. The idea though is just a start. Starting a business involves a process akin to putting a jigsaw puzzle together to create an entire picture. Rarely can you execute the idea alone, so building an enabling network is fundamental to your success. This means partnering with the right people to help you on your journey. You also have to set aside time for arranging all the different activities like marketing, facilities, banking, etc. that are involved in running a business. Most of all you need to have courage and be prepared to challenge and revise your own assumptions when confronted with road-blocks.

Failure is part of the process

Yes, some elements of your “great idea” will fail. Be prepared for it and learn how to nurture your resilience. Confronting failure does not mean you give up – learn from it, get wiser and try a different path.

Find an early path to revenue

Very few of us have the luxury of having our businesses subsidised (either by our own or others’ money) for an unlimited amount of time. At the end of the day a business needs to create independent income from paying customers – hence you need to get them quickly. This is where marketing comes into place. Whether it’s through word of mouth, social media, clever leaflet campaigns, or whatever other way you think you can attract customers, marketing your studio or school will need to be thought out and disciplined process. If this is not your strength, invest in the effort to engage your network and seek assistance from someone who can help you in this space. The method of hanging the “Yoga Studio Here” shingle and hoping that customers will come tends to be less than effective nowadays, especially in cities where hundreds of activities are competing for people’s attention.

Build Relationships Quickly

For your business to thrive, you need to build relationships quickly. It actually helps to map out the kind of relationships you’ll need to develop. Some candidates might include customers, relief teachers for those times when you’ll need a break (generally speaking closing down a business like a yoga studio when you go on a holiday means that you will not have a business to come back to), local authorities (for permits, etc), friendly journalists (for free marketing exposure), banks, potential investors, lawyers, suppliers, maintenance people (conducting classes when your studio toilet is not functioning is not fun!) to name a few. Do invest the time to build that network around you. By far the relationships with customers are the most critical, so investing in building sustainable engagements that keep them interested in coming back (repeat business) does not need further explanations.

All of the above lessons we learned the hard way and so we hope that at the very least, they will give you food for thought. The good news is that because we created www.asanasforyou.com, we can save you some precious time with helping you to design your high-quality classes in a matter of minutes so that you can spend it on running your business.

A warm Namaste to all of you and good luck with your ventures! Please do not hesitate to reach out to us if we can help you in anyway on our respective journeys.

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