Dancing has been a part of our lives since childhood. Pick any random childhood video or photo and you will find the best dancer dancing freely without any fear or limitations. However, as we grow up, we usually give up what we love and become occupied with fulfilling the expectations of people around us.
Launched in 2015 with a passion for dance by CEO & Founder Jami Stigliano, Austin, TX-based DivaDance is a franchising company known for offering a unique adult dance class experience. It provides fun, inclusive, pop-music inspired dance choreography classes, parties, and programs for adults. But what makes DivaDance different is that their members learn actual dance routines, not just follow-the-leader style movement. Intending to rejuvenate everyone through dance, DivaDance ultimately offers more than just a dance experience.
“Inspiring confidence and building community are the center of everything we do,” says Jami Stigliano, CEO and Founder of DivaDance.
The disappointment that led to DivaDance
Born as an idea in a bedroom filled with posters of upcoming pop artists, DivaDance has a unique history behind its establishment. It was an era when Madonna, Mariah Carey, Janet Jackson, and Paula Abdul were topping the charts. Inspired by these queens of music, CEO and “Head Diva”, Jami, began choreographing dance routines for herself and her friends. It all began when she graduated from the University of Texas at Austin. Being a former dance team captain, Jami took her passion for pop music to NYC, where she worked as a music industry executive at Jive Records. New in NYC, Jami took a “beginner” dance class at a studio for adults. However, the experience turned out to be the complete opposite of what she expected. “It was stressful, overwhelming, and competitive – not the kind of environment I was looking for as a fun experience,” recalls Jami. That was the moment where Jami decided to start her dance academy that helped people unite, feel confident, and bring lots of joy.
“After years of traveling with recording artists across the globe, running album releases fighting to break new artists, and devoting my life 24*7 to helping pop stars become rich and famous- I decided in 2015 to DO MORE OF WHAT I LOVE and bring the more important mission of inspiring confidence and building community to adults across the country,” shares Jami.
“Community is woven in everything we do - relationships between our franchisees and between their respective team are not only essential to our success but also makes the journey more fun.”
With that goal in her mind, Jami started conducting sessions 1-2 nights per week while she continued her day job. This hobby started gaining momentum and turned into a successful & profitable business that could be easily run on a part-time basis. As a part of an expansion of her vision & business, DivaDance started offering private group classes for bachelorettes and birthday parties, which attracted groups of ladies from all over the country to NYC for their weekend of fun. Having experienced the joyful and playful environment at DivaDance, these ladies insisted Jami on visiting their states and cities. However, due to her commitments as a music industry executive, Jami initially dismissed their invite. However, later she gave it a thought and her ‘no’ became ‘why not’. Finally, in 2017, DivaDance officially started offering its franchises and spreading joy and fun everywhere.
“DivaDance is on a mission, to unite women together, build self-confidence, self-love, and community in ourselves and others,” saysJami.
Empowering women entrepreneurs’
Staying true to her mission and vision, at DivaDance Jami has instilled a work culture purely based on passion, values & value addition. “We don’t just tout our values as a marketing message – we truly live them,” says Jami. Being a franchising company, DivaDance places equal attention to its franchises as well. “It’s also my mission to help women create a business and life that they love through our franchising opportunity,” expresses Jami. Eager to share her success secrets, Jami wants her franchises to feel valued, empowered, and confident as business owners. Considering the success of her franchises as her own, Jami believes in doing whatever it takes to ensure that the business partners achieve the success and economic independence they deserve. It allows women to enjoy work/life balance due to business ownership and invite/ overcome challenges by becoming an entrepreneur.
“Community is woven in everything we do – relationships between our franchisees and between their respective team are not only essential to our success but also makes the journey more fun,” saysJami.
The criteria for choosing a DivaDance franchise is simple. First and foremost, their values need to align with DivaDance’s mission. Among others they need to have a sales background, must possess the ability to build and coach a team, must be goal-oriented and willing to work relentlessly, should be willing to learn and implement, must follow the system and business guidelines set by DivaDance, and should be technology and social media savvy. Such qualities allow prospective partners to achieve success as a part of the DivaDance family.
After the initial training begins a crucial phase where the franchise faces the real business world. To support the franchise face and overcome every challenge thrown at them, they receive access to access to Learning Management System for ongoing training and tools, communications and “what to do/what to say” guidelines, round the clock access to the entire organization via Slack, monthly all-owner calls, an annual conference, monthly 1 to 1 calls and annual goal-setting sessions.
At DivaDance, franchises are treated as a family and every measure is taken to make them feel valued, guided, and supported. On a journey to pursue success, DivaDance is indeed an opportunity to make life dance at your tunes.
“Our franchisees are our family and they know we are here for their success 24:7!” says Jami.