How often do you network or trade resources with other teachers? The old cliche claiming it’s all “who you know” certainly rings true for most career paths these days, but it can be especially helpful for teachers or anyone hoping to break into the music or entertainment industries. Networking for music teachers, specifically, can also help you establish a great reputation in your community, connect with potential new students and discover new opportunities for performances, auditions and more.
Consider these tips as you work on your music teacher networking skills:
Plan a group recital
Connect with another teacher in your area and pool your resources to plan the ultimate recital. This can be especially useful if you’ve never put on a recital before – it can feel overwhelming for some, so having a partner to help organize everything can ease the stress. Moreover, you can share sheet music if necessary, and expose your students to other similar young musicians.
Join a music teacher association, like MTNA
Associations like MTNA offer opportunities for ongoing education, mentoring, access to professional support and teacher grants, as well as a certification that looks great on your resume or TakeLessons profile.
Attend conferences & conventions
Search for conventions, meet-ups, and other music events near you. Strike up a conversation with someone afterward or during intermission, and you may just find your next new student. At the very least, experiencing new music and performances may give you an extra dose of inspiration for your next lesson.
Take advantage of social networking
Consider starting your own blog, or submitting an article to an established music blog where students may be looking (like the TakeLessons blog!). Connect with your students and parents, and join forums and Facebook groups in your area. Use these groups to start communicating and sharing advice with other teachers in your area, and you could find some great connections.
Perform – everywhere and anywhere!
As musicians, it’s second nature to want to get out there and perform. But sometimes teaching can get in the way. In order to keep up your own performing chops, consider contacting local fairs, block parties, and school or charity events to find out how you or your students can perform. Getting up on stage and performing is a great way to get your name out there and advertise your experience as a teacher.