Do you consider yourself an entrepreneur? If your answer is no, you may want to think again. The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines an entrepreneur as one who organizes, manages, and assumes the risks of a business or enterprise.  As an independent music instructor you can consider yourself an entrepreneur if you posses and/or develop these skills. According to the SBA.gov website here’s a list of common traits found in entrepreneurs:

  1.       Comfortable with taking risks– The transition from working a 9 to 5 and solely focusing on teaching is a risk, there is no certainty if you will be able to maintain a steady clientele. Moving into a commercial property as your studio develops is another risk all its own. Weigh all of your options but don’t allow fear to keep you from reaching your full potential.
  2.      Independent –Entrepreneurs have to make a lot of decisions on their own-you will find yourself making decisions such as: are these potential new students a great fit for my studio, should you hire instructors to work for you, or where you should bank. All of the decisions are completely left up to you to decide!
  3.      Persuasive –Developing the art of persuasion will benefit you when you go to present students with challenging repertoire and need to persuade them that they can learn and play that particular piece well.
  4.      Able to Negotiate-As your studio continues to grow you may need to rely on the ability to negotiate lease terms, bank fees and vendor contracts. Don’t be afraid to ask for discounts that will benefit your bottom line.
  5.      Creative-A music instructor implements creativity on daily basis. From creating lessons plans to organizing themed recitals and everything else! Relax you have this skill in the bag.
  6.      Supported by others-Starting as an Independent Music Instructor can be slightly overwhelming. Questions about where to teach, what methods to use and what to charge can all weigh you down.  You will definitely need a support system and/or mentor in your corner. Try reaching out to family members who have great business sense or the many companies that are available like the SBA, Score or a local university may have resources available to you.  As for teaching advice your local piano teacher’s forum and online forums can help you with all sorts of advice! As well as MusicAcademyAdvantage.com aims to improve the business side to owning and operating a music studio.