The Stalwart

Toledo’s own Skills in Heels by Jasmine Renee



1.Tell us about your training/experience in your business field.
 I have been dancing since I can remember. I started learning ballet at three years old. I joined House of Adonis, a local team where I learned hip hop. Later, I danced for Rogers Showstoppers Dance Team in high school while also teaching hip hop dance at Daryl Jarvis Dance Studio. In college, I attended Bowling Green State University where I was a member of the Elem3nt Dance Team performing at events on campus

2.What makes your business unique?
 Skills in Heels is an army of dancers that have become a powerhouse in Toledo. We offer classes to dancers of all levels and backgrounds. In addition to classes, local creatives and artists can hire our dancers for performances. We are unique because our sensual style of dance helps promote confidence, fitness and inner security.

3.Where do you see your business in 5 years?
 In 5 years, I hope for Skills in Heels to have its own studio. I also hope to see my dancers growing in skills showcasing their talents on major stages. I would love for us to tour spreading the Skills in Heels brand.

4.What is the ultimate goal for your business? 
My ultimate goal is for everyone to experience the love and joy of dance. I want to coach dancers to be skilled enough to dance professionally. I want to give my dancers opportunities and knowledge to get booked being paid fairly because too often dancers are overworked and underpaid.

5.How do you balance your professional and personal life?
 Balancing my professional and personal life can be challenging. I am a wife and a mother so it takes proper scheduling and communication to create balance. I am grateful for the circle of people around me because they help me keep balance in my life. They have taught classes, substituting in my absence when needed. Planning and sacrificing are the keys in my work life balance.

6.What has been your greatest accomplishment and why? My biggest accomplishment is the number of dancers that I’ve had the opportunity to teach. I have come in contact with over 200 dancers in our seven year stretch. I can remember when the first year my largest class was eight people and some classes only one person would attend. My growth is a huge accomplishment as well as people believing in me. National recording artists have re-post Skills in Heels on their social media platforms which is extremely flattering.

7.What has been your greatest failure and how did you grow from it? What some consider failures, I consider lessons learned. One lesson I have learned is to be open to collaborations. I am so guarded with my work that I have turned down many collaborations. I have learned that collaborations have many benefits that do not necessarily have to be monetary.

8.What advice would you give to a young entrepreneur? Remember your goal and don’t stop until you reach it. If you don’t reach them right away, regroup and don’t ever stop. A business mindset requires being consistent, staying present and allowing the public to actually see you working. Create content, invest in your business and always network. Put yourself in places to meet new people and intentionally form partnerships. Always keep the passion that you have for your business knowing the sky’s the limit.

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