Monday, November 13, 2006

You Get What You Pay For

I got a great email from my belly dance teacher about pricing for private parties and dancing in restaurants. I'll post that soon. It's nice to know that there's a code of ethics amongst professional belly dancers. I was talking with my pole teacher Saturday and she said she hadn't seen anything like that for pole dance instructors. She does private parties all the time, and she teaches private lessons in addition to her group classes. She met another pole dancer who does privates at cut rates, which actually has a negative effect for all pole teachers.

Let me detail a little bit of what goes into a private lesson or party. The teacher has to pay for the studio and/or pay for the fuel to reach the location. There's time involved in travel and set-up. With parties, there's set-up and clean-up afterwards. There's the cost of the outfits, poles and other materials that are used by the party guests. Then we have the cost of all the training that goes into giving that teacher the necessary skills and training to hold classes, lessons and parties. There's promotional expense, the cost of additional help that may be needed for a large group. Sometimes the teacher or performer has to wait around for the guests or students to arrive or be ready to go.

It got me to thinking about the value I receive for the money I spend on everything. I feel that I can better evaluate what I'm getting and knowing its worth. Is this something I could do myself? How much expertise does someone need to do this? What am I really getting for what I pay? How much time am I costing someone? By evaluating with these questions, I can be a better shopper, student, and artist. Next time you pay for a lesson, a class, or even a thing, try taking this new perspective.

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