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#2047277 - 03/12/13 09:49 PM waiting list etiquette
Barb860 Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/11/09
Posts: 1654
Loc: northern California
How do you handle your waiting list/wait list? Some questions:

1. As a teacher, when you contact someone on your wait list to notify them about an opening, do you give them 24 hours to get back to you, or 12, or..."I have to know right now if you want the lesson time"....? if you are leaving a voice mail message, or emailing.

2. Teachers, do you stay in contact with folks on your wait lists? example: you call them every couple of months to say "no openings yet, do you still want to be on my wait list", that sort of thing?

students/families: what do you think is a good procedure?


Edited by Barb860 (03/12/13 09:50 PM)
Piano Teacher

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#2047297 - 03/12/13 10:07 PM Re: waiting list etiquette [Re: Barb860]
Peter K. Mose Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 01/06/12
Posts: 1973
Loc: Toronto, Ontario
I think you need to give people a couple of days to get back to you, and ideally you would let them know the situation a couple weeks or more ahead of time, when you first learn a student is leaving your studio and freeing up a slot.
Students don't normally leave a piano studio from one day to the next - especially if you have a withdrawal policy - so there should be some time for you to manoeuver.

But this is an enviable problem, Barb!

#2047303 - 03/12/13 10:22 PM Re: waiting list etiquette [Re: Barb860]
bzpiano Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/10/11
Posts: 1090
Loc: Irvine, CA
1. I think I would email all the people in waiting list at once and first come first serve. Whoever get back to me first get the slot.

2. I only including them into my monthly newsletter so that they know what is going on in my studio. No, I do not send another email to say that hey, I still not having opening.
Piano lessons in Irvine, CA
Follow my 4YO student here: http://bit.ly/FollowMeiY

#2047316 - 03/12/13 10:35 PM Re: waiting list etiquette [Re: bzpiano]
currawong Offline
6000 Post Club Member

Registered: 05/15/07
Posts: 6162
Loc: Down Under
Originally Posted By: ezpiano.org
1. I think I would email all the people in waiting list at once and first come first serve. Whoever get back to me first get the slot.
I wouldn't call that a "waiting list" you have, then. I'd call it a waiting group, as no-one has priority. I don't know about you, but in my ordinary life there are times when I'm unable to answer an email straight away, and it's not because of any lack of interest. If I was on top of a waiting list I'd find it a bit unfair if someone else got the spot simply because I was working when the email came in, and couldn't answer for a couple of hours.
Du holde Kunst...

#2047358 - 03/12/13 11:39 PM Re: waiting list etiquette [Re: Barb860]
Jeff Clef Offline
4000 Post Club Member

Registered: 10/05/08
Posts: 4756
Loc: San Jose, CA
It's a good tool, anyway, to get them on board with the idea, in your studio policy, of giving proper notice. It helps an orderly and seemly transfer process for all parties. With a 30-day-notice, there should be adequate time for notifications, replies, interviews, and scheduling the new students.

Frankly, I'm not so sure about using the Filene's Basement Wedding Dress Sale method for filling studio vacancies. And even there, teams plan ahead. I would hate to see that place the night when the doors close after the event. Is that the kind of studio you want?

"...2. Teachers, do you stay in contact with folks on your wait lists? example: you call them every couple of months to say "no openings yet, do you still want to be on my wait list", that sort of thing?..."

I would think a note, sent out quarterly with the statements, thanking them for their interest in your studio and asking them to let you know if they still wish to be on the list, or are now studying elsewhere. That is civil, and a reminder that you haven't forgotten about them. You could even invite them to recitals.

#2048714 - 03/15/13 01:42 PM Re: waiting list etiquette [Re: Barb860]
Bluoh Offline
Full Member

Registered: 12/20/11
Posts: 421
Loc: Canada
Do set a limit on how long you're willing to hold a spot for them. I would call one at a time; if the first one doesn't want it, I'll move onto the next name.

A newsletter would be a good idea (esp if they check their emails often). Don't be too frank about it and say "Sorry, no opening for you yet", but thank them for their patience, etc.

Sometimes they've found another teacher already, so do give them a deadline to get back to you.

#2048719 - 03/15/13 01:51 PM Re: waiting list etiquette [Re: Bluoh]
Barb860 Offline
1000 Post Club Member

Registered: 04/11/09
Posts: 1654
Loc: northern California
Yes, setting a time limit to commit about an opening is necessary and that's what I would like suggestions on. As I call folks on the wait list, they say things like, "Judy has basketball at that time, let me see if it can be changed and get back to you, but this program doesn't end for another 2 months...." that sort of thing.

Edited by Barb860 (03/15/13 01:52 PM)
Piano Teacher

#2049978 - 03/17/13 11:21 PM Re: waiting list etiquette [Re: Barb860]
Monica K. Offline

Platinum Supporter until Dec 31 2012

Registered: 08/10/05
Posts: 18127
Loc: Lexington, Kentucky
Three days sounds reasonable to me (but I would suggest trying to contact the family multiple ways-- email, phone message, etc.). One day or 12 hours does not seem fair.
Mason & Hamlin A -- 91997
My YouTube channel: http://www.youtube.com/pianomonica


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