As summer winds down, teachers everywhere are preparing for the back-to-school rush. And as a private teacher or tutor, you might see your schedule filling up as old students come back from summer vacations, or new students find their calling in band or orchestra classes in school. To stay ahead of the game, here are three steps you can take to prepare:
1. Check your inventory. Whether you teach at your studio, online, or travel to your students’ homes, you need a good set of supplies on hand. Set aside some time to go through your collection of sheet music, books, and other supplies, and determine what you need for the year. If you teach contemporary pop music, for example, consider purchasing sheet music for the current hits, so you’re ready when students ask for it. If you’re tutoring students, see what new or updated resources are available. And don’t forget the little things either – you can find great deals this time of the year on notebooks, folders, highlighters, and more!
2. Double-check your schedule. Take an honest look at your current student roster and your other commitments. Do you want more students this school year? Consider taking some time to ramp up your marketing efforts on Craigslist or through schools in your area. If you’re having trouble retaining students because of scheduling conflicts, consider making some adjustments to allow for more open time slots. With kids going back to school, for example, popular time slots include right after school or early evenings. Alternately, are you feeling overwhelmed thinking about all of your upcoming commitments? Don’t forget to schedule in time to relax, no matter how busy you are. (TakeLessons instructors, don’t forget to update your availability in your teacher account!)
3. Forecast your finances. Many instructors teach privately as a side job, relying on other jobs to pay the bills. But if you’ve ever dreamed about teaching full-time, why not make this the year? With the right tools and marketing help, it is possible. To prepare yourself for success, sit down and do some forecasting. If you continue with the students you have now, how much will you make this year from teaching? How many students do you need to make teaching full-time a reality? Armed with this knowledge, you can figure out your next steps. This may mean you need to open up more availability, get some assistance with marketing yourself and your studio, or even adjust your lesson prices. (Hint: Stay tuned for financial forecasting tools in your TakeLessons accounts!)
Teachers, do you have any back-to-school tips for preparing your studio? Let us know in the comments!
Photo by MaltaGirl