Leadership Retreat

Deer Creek Lake, Site of 2015 SAA Leadership Retreat

Image by Dan Browning

Congratulations! You made it through the 2015 SAA Leadership Retreat! You have a renewed sense of motivation and a slew of great ideas that you are eager to implement into your studio. What do you do next? Organize your notes? Tell your colleagues about Conversation Intelligence? Revise your studio policies? Here is the Top 10 list of things that you should do post-retreat!

1. Get some sleep!

Let it all sink in and digest, especially if you’re going right to the Starling-Delay Symposium next week in New York. Don’t worry, the ideas won’t leave your brain that quickly!

2. Pick a date to organize your notes and handouts.

Pick a specific date and put it on the calendar. You don’t want to leave your handouts and notes in a state of disarray forever, but at this point in the year many teachers don’t have the time to get everything together. Treat yourself to a nice meal or night in a local hotel to make it something you look forward to!

3. Collect your gems.

Thumb through your notes and find the items that you marked to remember. These games, quotes and ideas are your gems and can lose meaning if too much time passes. Create a list of your gems.

4. Pick one of your gems and get it going.

See the benefit right away by assigning it to a student, parent or class. This will create motivation to look back at your notes in the future.

5. Plan your difficult conversation (Conversational Intelligence).

6. Reward yourself!

Whether it was a book of sheet music, CD or teaching tool you deserve to splurge a little!

7. Find a way to express gratitude.

Write to someone for helping make your 2015 Leadership Retreat extra special. I love postcards for the reason that I don’t ever expect one in return. It’s a one-way street and everyone loves getting them!

8. Incorporate something into your own practice.

Your students aren’t the only ones that should benefit from your new skills.

9. Assess your experience.

Help us upgrade! Have an idea for a session that wasn’t there? Did we miss something? Notice any great improvements from the last retreat? Tell us one thing you liked and one thing you think could be improved. Share your photos with us, as well!

10. Make a commitment to yourself.

It doesn’t have to be a big deal! Whether it has to do with teaching technique, studio management, or your Suzuki vision, just make it happen. Ask yourself how you would complete the statement, “The 2015 Leadership Retreat was when I first _______ and decided _______.”