Author: admin

balance beamWhen I mentioned to my husband that this month’s blog would be about balance, he laughed and suggested that I first start to make some changes, and then write and article in six months to share how I achieved a more balanced lifestyle. I have to admit that he is right. I have not done well with balance over the last two months. Most of us start the year with high expectations, good intentions, high energy and a long list of goals. That was how I began September – full of energy, many students, a waiting list, and lots of projects. By the second week of lessons, I had already suffered from illness due to stress. I was out of balance – I had fallen off the beam.

Instead of sharing my own ideas, I will summarize a session from the 2011 Music Teachers National Conference in Milwaukee entitled “A life in balance.” This was one of the last sessions presented at the conference and even though I was there, I was not able to attend so I purchased the MP3 DVD and listened to it. Meg Gray, a professor of music at Lincoln University of Missouri, and Ellen McQuie, family medicine physician, gave an insightful and helpful session in which they concentrated on the following five different areas to assist in creating a balanced lifestyle.

BugFix: Students and parents were able to delete invoices. This is now fixed. BugFix: Some students were randomly being removed as participants in an event. This bug has now been fixed! BugFix: Some studios were having trouble accessing the "Receive Payment" page. This has now been fixed. BugFix: Emailing directly from the People List hasn't been working for a couple days. This is now fixed. BugFix: On rare occasions...

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Last spring as I made the decision to double the size of my studio, I displayed our phone number prominently on our website’s header and throughout the site. It worked wonders, because all of the sudden I was flooded with calls from prospective students and parents.

However, I continued to receive a generous amount of emails from prospective students and parents as well. And most often, those who contacted my studio via email actually followed through with registering for the waiting list and joining the studio.

Once the studio was at maximum capacity with a waiting list in the double digits, those phone calls started to become overwhelming. The emails were easy; I could simply personalize my standard email for prospective students and include a link to register for the waiting list. But with each phone call I received, I had the same conversation over and over again.

Business plan 2 Feeling overwhelmed with your business planning?

“When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.”

Don’t hesitate to enlist help! Being an independent teacher, I am fiercely independent, self-sufficient, and sometimes stubborn! However, when I become willing to ask for help, it seems the teachers magically appear.

Everyone needs a little help every now and then. Many of us have not had the business training that running a successful busines requires – I am the first to admit that I am lacking in these essential skills. This month I will feature the newly formed Piano Teacher School founded by Kathleen Theisen and Kristin Yost. Kathleen Theisen is an assistant professor at Western State Connecticut University and Kristin Yost is the founder and director of The Centre for Musical Minds in Frisco, Texas. Both of these enthusiastic teachers are not only very successful in their music careers but are also thriving entrepeneurs. And now they are here to help! They have developed practical courses to help independent teachers with the myriad of different activities involved in the daily tasks of teaching.

Piano Teacher School offers affordable online courses in four areas: Business Planning, Organization Strategies, Image and Branding, and Technology. Their goal is to “maximize the efficiency and productivity of your music studio.” Each class offers videos on private links and includes personalized one-on-one coaching. There are detailed descriptions of the classes on their website at – each sound fabulous and I would like to take them all, if only I could find the time! Courses are also accepted by the Music Teachers National Association for recertification.