Starting my business in the middle of a global pandemic: by Miss Charlotte
Hi, Miss Charlotte here! Some of you may already know me from classes in Cardiff, Newport and Abergavenny, where I have been teaching for Miss Lauren for 3 years. Hopefully, I will now get to meet even more lovely dancers as I grow my very own Tiny Toes business in Monmouthshire and Blaenau Gwent. I was instantly captured by the Tiny Toes vision during my application to become a teacher back in 2017 and dreamed of one day owning my very own franchise.
So why, after 3 years of dreaming, did I decide to take the leap now, in the middle of a global pandemic?! I started the process at the beginning of 2020, pre-COVID. My husband had recently been made redundant and, having spent the last 3 years working part-time whilst raising my 2 little boys, we decided that now it was my time to shine! Little did I know what a rollercoaster this year was going to become! I had a business plan, and then a plan B … a COVID plan … a complete revamp of the business plan! … and finally, now something that I feel is a true representation of where I would like to see my business, even in these strange times. As an existing teacher, I have seen first-hand the almost constant tweaks made by the other franchisees to meet the ever-changing situation and Government guidelines. Set ups that would normally be straightforward have been met with huge delays, due to increased demand for them and a skeleton staff implementing them (12 weeks for a business bank account!)
So why, with all these setbacks and in such uncertain times, did I commit to this process? I have always advocated that dance classes offer children so much more than technique: confidence, creativity and expression, social interaction, coordination, and special awareness … the list goes on! One of the things that I love about Tiny Toes Ballet classes is the emphasis put on the development of these life skills – through the medium of dance.
During those first few months of lockdown, at home with my little family, surrounded by our ‘things’, I craved those interactions and experiences for my children. I am sure I was not alone in that shift from valuing the things we ‘have’ to really appreciating the value of the things we can ‘do’. I strongly believe that it is more important now than ever before that we can safely offer our classes to you and your little ones, not only for all the benefits listed above, but also to share a little bit of wonder and magic with our dancers every week during these unprecedented times!
I hope you are all keeping safe and I look forward to meeting you and your budding dancers in class very soon!