Carrie L., Michigan
We are at the point at our studio that we aren’t going to take any more piano students till February due to my maternity leave and the level of capacity we have right now at the studio.
How do you all handle waiting lists?
I’m set up to meet with 4 families next week.
How do you handle phone calls? Do you tell them upfront that there is no space but invite them to come to the FIS anyway? Do you tell them at the FIS that there is no space?
How much do you take as a ‘deposit’ for times that open up several months later?
Nicole O., California
I’m in a similar situation right now. I’m no longer taking new students until January. I always find starting new ones during the holidays is just tricky with the amount of time I take off. So far, my waiting list is for mostly PAS groups. None of them have paid a deposit. A couple have checked in to make sure they’re still on the list. Most of them on the list have been to an FIS. Mid December they’ll all get a phone call to either schedule an FIS or give me schedule information.
I’ve had people call about lessons in the last couple weeks and I let them know that I don’t have space available until January, but if they’d like to come in for an FIS they can.
Kerry V., Australia
It can be tricky but the best is always be upfront! They don’t need to know the reasons why however, when they hear you are due to have baby number 3 they would more than understand. They are parents themselves. The only thing is they may wonder how you are going to be there 100% for their child during lessons. On the whole though people are usually understanding.
One way of approaching this could be
“………. There are no available places until February. However, we would still love to meet you and your family so when we are ready to start up we know you better and so can slot you into the appropriate group…….”
” ……….. In the meantime I shall send you emails of interesting articles about children and the benefits of music…….”
Keep them informed, keep in touch. I joined a company where I can set up cards on the computer and they are printed and sent off for me. You could send them ‘contact cards’ which can add a nice touch.
Deposit! I probably wouldn’t take one in this case. I’d utilize other teachers too if you have enough who can help out.