Friendship with Austin Roberson
As a studio owner, you may have heard of Austin Roberson, the founder of Studio Owners Academy; we both work in the dance studio owner coaching and consulting space.
Technically I suppose you could call us competitors …. but we’ve found that it’s a LOT more fun for us to be friends!
I can hear you thinking to yourself now: how in the world do you become great friends with “the competition” and not run into problems? Isn’t that impossible?
Let me tell you more, and I think you’ll agree that it’s not only possible, it’s pretty great.
Here’s how it works for us:
- We appreciate each other’s strengths.
- We give each other credit where credit is due.
- We stand up for each other when the other person is not there.
- We schedule time to update each other on our activities and ask how we can offer support.
- We know how to stay in our respective lanes.
The bottom line is that we always show respect and appreciation for each other’s work, and we communicate clearly and often.
For example, in addition to sharing guest interviews with each other’s membership communities, Austin and I have both been guest speakers at each other’s live events. To an outsider, that may look like we’re crazy—inviting a competitor onto our own turf?! To us, it doesn’t seem that way because we are both one-hundred-percent confident in ourselves, and confident in what the other person does.
So how does being collaborative with a competitor really play out? Well, I may teach on social media best practices for dance studios, but I’m not going to sell a course on Facebook ads because that’s Austin’s thing. He’s great at that! In fact, I’ve purchased his course. And he will refer someone to me for “whole studio coaching” if he thinks More Than Just Great Dancing® might be a better fit to serve that person’s needs.
I’m here to tell you that you don’t need to settle for merely co-existing with “the competition.” It’s possible to earn respect from each other, communicate well, and if you’re lucky, even form a meaningful friendship.
I encourage you today to answer this question: who can you connect with this week that you consider a competitor? You probably have more in common than meets the eye! Take the first step, extend a hand, offer to meet for coffee …. open the door to the possibility of good will, and you may be rewarded with a unique friendship you can’t find anywhere else.