If you’re a guitar instructor interested in leveraging your time, reaching more students, and maximizing your impact, then this article is perfect for you!
Private Lessons: A Flawed Business Model
When I first started teaching guitar, I followed the usual path filling my schedule with private lessons. As my reputation grew, my student roster quickly ballooned. After a few months, I was maxed out teaching an endless stream of private guitar lessons.
As you might expect, I soon burned out. Although I loved the guitar and adored my students, my business model was inherently flawed. Teaching private lessons, I could never earn the money necessary to provide for my family, and the impact I could have in my community was limited.
In short, I created a job from which I could not escape until I discovered the group guitar model.
A Job vs. A Business
Teaching private guitar lessons is a job, but it’s not a viable business model. As a job, guitar instructors exchange their time and expertise for an hourly wage. As such, their impact and their income are directly related to the number of hours they can reasonably teach on any given day, week, or year.
On the other hand, a business is a system designed to add value, maximize impact, and increase personal freedom.
Adding Value to Your Guitar Teaching Studio with Group Guitar Lessons
Group guitar lessons provide students with the opportunity to learn, perform, and compose together with their friends, creating a sense of community and camaraderie amongst students passionate about learning to play the guitar. This adds value to the lives of your students and your community.
Maximizing Impact with Group Guitar Lessons
The typical Rock Dojo group guitar lesson has 8 – 10 students between the ages of 6 and 12-years old. Consequently, the average teacher leading half-a-dozen group guitar lessons per week can reach 48 to 60-students per week teaching just six-hours a week! Now imagine how many students a motivated, passionate guitar instructor with a knack for marketing could reach!
Increasing Income with Group Guitar Lessons
If you teach 8-students per class at $25 per student leading six group guitar lessons a week, you can reasonably expect to gross $1200 a week! On the other hand, the typical private guitar instructor in the United States averages about $39 per hour. He/she would have to teach 30.79 hour-long private guitar lessons a week to earn the same about of money and reach the same number of students.
How to Get Started
At the end of the day, most guitar instructors teach for a living because they love the guitar. They have experienced first-hand the guitar’s power to improve lives, increase self-confidence, and express themselves. Furthermore, most guitar instructors spent years honing their chops, studying their music theory, and learning how to effectively communicate to their students.
That’s why I firmly believe guitar instructors should be well compensated for their hard-work and the service they provide to the community.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Brian Parham is the founder of the Rock Dojo in Portland, Oregon, where he teaches hundreds of kids between the ages of 6 and 12 years-old to play, perform, and compose their own original music on the guitar in after-school group guitar lessons. He’s also the author of three guitar method books including Guitar for Kids: Rock Dojo The Complete Belt System.