By Julie Tingley, The KNOW Women

How the passion for dance and movement paved the way for this entrepreneur to lead other women to self-love and successful seven-figure businesses.

If this were a story about tip-toeing around what society considers the “norm” when it comes to the female body, or playing it small when faced with “failure,” it would not be an introduction to Lisa Zahiya. But because this is about Lisa, we will establish upfront that there are no failures, but “amazing ways to gather data and learn about what will and will not work.” Now, picture big movement, hip-shaking, and speaking on stage in front of audiences across the US. Think dynamic, memorable, confident…now, meet Lisa.

A nationally known business coach, an in-demand speaker, a renowned dance studio owner, an instructor who teaches workshops on body image and self-love, a business owner who found her sweet-spot in the pivot, a little girl who dreamed of being a dancer but was criticized about her body type, a woman that fiercely and faithfully empowers other women. Today, Lisa Zahiya is at the helm of the rise of female entrepreneurs. She has broken the mold, shattered glass ceilings, and is taking every single one of us to the top with her. Here, Lisa shares more of what we need to KNOW from her experience in leveling up.


 KNOWing and never forgetting the time that would change everything…

When I was 26, I dropped out of Georgetown Law school to pursue my dream of opening a dance studio that served all people and created movement opportunities for everyone.  I moved to Asheville, NC where I founded Studio Zahiya, a renowned dance studio focused on empowering women.

However, during the shutdowns that accompanied the pandemic of 2020, I was stuck paying $5000 a month in rent and was not able to use the space or run the business. What was especially hard about this is that it was the first time I felt like I could control NOTHING. After allowing myself to feel the feelings, to mourn and grieve my dream studio, I then got really creative about pivoting to a new way to serve my clients. Using the tools I garnered during my entrepreneurial journey, I pivoted my business online and was able to double my profit and gain students from all over the world. Today, I have leveraged that information to help over 100 entrepreneurs start and scale their businesses.

KNOWing that you had to stand out to be successful…

As a coach, I am in an industry that has a lot of integrity issues. As the industry is unregulated, that are people who are not ethical or qualified to be coaching. In my brand creation, it was important to me to qualify myself as an expert.

I measure the success of what I’m doing by looking towards the B Corporation Model.

I believe that the success of my business is measured by 1.) revenue; 2.) how we grow the health and wealth of all employees; 3.) how it influences the clients’ success; and 4.) how we influence the environment around us, or how can we grow the business and do good in the community and world?

KNOWing what you learned along the way that others should know too…

  • Spend 20-30 percent of your time working on yourself and becoming the person who can lead the organization or business you are creating. 
  • Don’t try to do everything yourself and hire when it’s already too late. Hire early and hire slowly. 
  • Master communication. Know how to have hard conversations. How to stop qualifying what you are saying to clearly communicate your message to the world.

KNOWing that movement starts with mindset…

Get married to the mission of what you do. Write it down and read it every. Single. Day! 

If you stay tied to WHY you are doing what you do – how it will impact the world and your family – you will become unstoppable. 

Also, be resilient. Get back up quickly. Quick pivot, quick change, quick recovery. And, finally, never see failures as failures but as amazing learning opportunities. There are never wins and losses. There are winnings and learnings.

KNOWing that every part of the journey was meant for this moment…

I always had the dream of opening a dance studio that served all people and created movement opportunities for everyone after experiencing criticism in my childhood about my body type. Today, I teach workshops on body image and self-love. I closed that thriving dance studio, and created an online dance and fitness platform with Zahiya Online which actually expanded my reach to show up for everybody with movement opportunities just like I always hoped I could. Learning digital marketing and online tools to scale this business brought me to Lisa Zahiya Coaching, where I now show others how to do what I did and grow to six or seven figures. Every part of my story was always meant to be, and I was always meant for more.



Company name : Lisa Zahiya Coaching + Lisa Zahiya Online

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Instagram URL : @lisazahiya

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