Hayley Limpkin, age 29, lives in Chatham, Kent. Hayley has been the Principal of Razzamataz Medway since September 2010 and Razzamataz Maidstone since September 2011.
I found Razzamataz through a franchise website and after research I remembered them from Dragons’ Den.
I was a professional dancer traveling around the world on cruise ships as well as performing at Disney. After an injury I started studying at an open university while on a cruise ship. I then went of to study for a Masters in Business, which led to securing a position with a global blue chip marketing company. It was a fantastic role working with the likes of Virgin Atlantic and Sky but incredibly long hours with lots of traveling.
I’ve always had a dream of running my own theatre school. I initially thought about doing it on my own but if I’m completely honest, I knew I would financially need to be at break even point straight away and with a trusted model like a Razzamataz franchise I thought I had a better chance of doing just that. I also really loved what Razzamataz stands for and what it can offer students.
Being part of something that is really great with all the great opportunities that are on offer. We are offering students once in a lifetime experiences such as taking them to the West End to perform. There is also a fantastic network of other Razzamataz Principals that are so friendly and helpful and we can draw from one another’s expertise. For example, one of the Principals is really experienced in putting on big productions whereas I can offer help in terms of marketing
The work home life balance can be difficult to get right. It can be all consuming so I have had to be really strict and set myself boundaries because I’m so passionate about my schools. Although I love it, I have to remind myself that it is a business and I have to make sure I get the cash flow right to pay my staff and myself!
Focus on the things that matter most and don’t get bogged down by small things. Be aware of the competition but don’t loose the momentum of your own business by wasting two much time on what other people are doing. Don’t be frightened to be ambitious and go for what you want and make sure you shout about the success that you’ve achieved.
I’m in my home office by 9am to listen to voicemails and answer emails and to book potential students into taster sessions. I quite often have meetings with local press and advertising as well as meetings with my teachers. I have a brilliant team but I make sure that communication is key and at least once a week I speak with my team. I also have staff meetings and one to ones where we discuss how to Win, Learn and Change, which is basically a review of where we are and how we can improve. I try to take Mondays off and dedicate a half a day each week to plan what’s next for both of the schools in terms of what opportunities are on offer and what we would like to achieve.
Many people have have found a rewarding long term career through franchising with Razzamataz Theatre Schools.
Razzamataz Theatre Schools franchise, with almost 50 schools throughout the UK, has many retired performers as Principals.
Nick Furlong and Gemma Hextall bought Razzamataz Sutton Coldfield in June 2015.
Jessica Chandler Smith has seen her Razzamataz franchise in Brentwood achieve huge success in just a few short weeks.
Lauren Kirkbride joined Razzamataz Theatre Schools as a student and now runs her own franchise.
The new Principals at Razzamataz are all set for their September openings after completing a week long extensive training session.
Shanley Booth launched Razzamataz Derby in 2007 and has renewed her franchise agreement for a further five years.
Michael French launched Razzamataz Barnet in April 2012 and has recently renewed his franchise agreement for a further five years.
Debbi Ledwith, Principal of Razzamataz Newbury, launched her school to allow her to spend more time with her three children.
Proving that age is really just a number, Pam Dixon, has run her Razzamataz Theatre Schools franchise since 2008.
Charlotte Young, the Principal of Razzamataz West Cumbria first became a franchisee in October 2006.
The Razzamataz Theatre Schools network continues to grow with the launch of two new London schools as well as a school in the North East.
At Razzamataz's recent training week, three new franchisees who have bought franchise re-sales, joined the franchisees who are launching in new territories.
Razzamataz have a number of franchisees who are either former teachers or combining part-time teaching with being a Razzamataz franchisee.
I specifically wanted to go for a franchise, and in particular Razzamataz because of the support from Head Office and other Principals. This is a network of theatre school owners so you are in business for yourself but not by yourself.Alison Beveridge, Razzamataz Durham.
The support and training we get means that we can get help on any aspect of our business. It has also been a fantastic and rewarding way of working, allowing me to continue to be there for the family while running my own business.Lisa Roberts, Razzamataz Rickmansworth
Buying into a franchise is an excellent way to begin running your own business. You have all the benefits of working for yourself but the added support and proven success of a well established and recognised brand. For a person new to business, it is ideal.Helen Green, Razzamataz Sheffield
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