One of my mentors, Dave Liniger, spoke to our More Than Just Great Dancing® members this week, and of all the wisdom he shared, this piece hit me hard.
I mean like a kick in the pants and a kickstart to the heart:
He said to us, “Your resilience is being tested right now. You must get scrappy. You became an entrepreneur for a reason, so stay in the game for that reason. How can you tap into that passion and get scrappy?”
I’ve known Dave for several years now, and I’m used to his no-nonsense talk. A Vietnam veteran and the co-founder of RE/MAX, Dave has the kind of professional and personal experiences that have made him skilled yet down-to-earth; accomplished yet humble. I have immense respect for his brutal honesty and his business insights.
Which is why the particular advice he gave last week was a HUGE reminder to me, and to our affiliated studio owners. It was like an immediate wake-up call that we have to use our PAST experience to inform our NEW experience.
And so what DOES it mean to get scrappy? For some of you, it’s been a while since you first built your business; since you first had that dream and worked to make it a reality. Now your world has changed, but that dream probably hasn’t.
My interpretation of what Dave said is this:
- You have to get creative.
- You have to change your mindset from “crisis mode” to “connection mode.”
- You have to innovate new solutions.
- You have to get proactive.
- You have to get a little (or a lot) uncomfortable.
- You have to be willing to learn new things.
- You have to remember your why.
Just like we teach our dancers, resilience is a muscle. And our resilience muscles are getting the workout of a lifetime right now. I don’t think doing business during a pandemic was on anyone’s vision board, and yet this is where we are and what we must persevere through!
So here’s my advice to go with Dave’s: Dig back into your passion. Think about why you started your business. Look at the lives you’re transforming through dance. Your business can still evolve while remaining true to your founding principles. You can adapt when you have the WILL to get scrappy again.
I think being scrappy has a lot to do with your decisions. You decide to take your dance classes online. You decide to make a Plan B and Plan C and Plan D for your recital. You decide to revamp your fall schedule to accommodate staggered times or smaller class caps or the possibility of a permanent live-streaming back up. You decide to serve your community because your community wants (and needs) you to keep showing up!
Your scrappiness brought you to this moment in your business, and it will help you get to the next chapter too. You’ve been through hard things—and this won’t be the last hard thing—but you have the potential to get to the other side with a stronger, more efficient business.
If I know one thing, it’s that I was called to do the work I’m doing now. I feel an almost tangible pull to lead and teach and coach—to help others pull through this time. I’m betting you might feel the same way about your business. Would you join me in reframing this moment, this adversity, into an opportunity to serve?
Zone in. Be passionate. Use your gifts and get ready to bounce!
To dreams and to scrappiness!