Your Name: Jackie Covas

Business Name: Dance Dot, a maker of a personal size tap dance floor

Type of Business: Arts & Entertainment; Children’s Goods & Services

Business Location: New York, New York, United States


Reason for starting
Totally selfish reasons! I was working as a professional dancer and finding a place to practice my tap dance routines while touring was nearly impossible. So, I created a portable tap dance board that I could easily take on the road with me. When I got back to NYC and began teaching dance I realized how my students could benefit from a practice board as well. I wanted to create something fun and colorful that would inspire them to practice at home or on-the go. Dance Dot was the solution I came up with. Soon after all of my dancer friends began asking for something a bit larger for professional use, hence the DDPro was born. I am so happy to be able to help dancers do what they love and keep dancing!

How do you define success?
I could remember being on a dance contract once where I was away from my family and friends for months at a time. It was exciting and lonely at the same time. To remind me of what was important I took a tube of red lipstick to my dressing room mirror and wrote “Health, Love and Happiness.” Those three words have always stick with me in good times and bad. I figure if I have my health I can do anything. If I am living my life from a place of love I will have a positive impact. Finally, if I am happy and thinking positively, good things will follow. If I am lucky enough to have all three I am successful!

Biggest Success
Following my heart and moving to New York City. Thank goodness I was brave enough (or crazy enough) to move to NYC in my early 20’s. I knew no one, had very little money, but needed to go! This city has made such an impact on my life. From the struggles to the amazing opportunities, meeting my husband, starting a business – I never would have achieved where I am right now, if it weren’t for the energy, drive and passion in the air here.

What is your top challenge and how have you addressed it?
Time. There is never enough time in the day it seems to get everything done. I have a lot of priorities in my life from my business to my performing career to my family. What I have learned is that the number one priority always has to be you. I try to do one thing a day out of sheer enjoyment. Whether it’s working out, sipping on my favorite latte or talking with a friend. When I take a little time for myself, I think more clearly, I work harder and I do it all with a smile on my face! Magically, I seem to get things done more efficiently and I am okay with calling it quits when I run out of steam.

Who is your most important role model?
My grandma is something else! Not only did she teach me my first tap step, but she is one of the most positive people I know. I would like to think we are kindred spirits in that we both like to look at our cup of life half full instead of half empty. She is such a positive person with energy that touches everyone around her. It’s infectious! To top it all off, she is in her 90’s and is still as glamorous as ever, goes ballroom dancing and runs up the stairs to her second floor apartment daily.