Several years ago I noticed a trend when students typically quit lessons. The first was usually in November right before the Christmas holidays and the second was in April right before our big spring recital celebration. It would drive me nuts because I felt that they were missing out on the BIG stuff where we celebrate the end of the semester.
I realized that both of these trends probably stemmed from the fact that parents simply wanted to save money and/or time before 1) Christmas and 2) Summer. It wasn’t necessarily because the student wanted to quit. So where there is a problem, there is always a solution. The solution that I came up with has worked well for me over the years that I wanted to share it with you.
I used to have my policy simply state that I needed a months notice before students quit. While this was a good policy, it wasn’t good enough. So I had to come up with an even better policy. My policy now requires students to commit to a full semester (5 months) with a month notice before semester end.
Here is the exact wording of my policy, “A commitment for a minimum of 1 semester (5 months) is required with a one-month written and paid notice before the semester ends should you decide to discontinue lessons. (Fall Semester: Aug-Dec; Spring Semester: Jan- May) Tuition does not change regardless of the actual number of lessons per month. (See yearly calendar) This policy covers both semesters of the school year. If you begin in the fall semester, re-registration in the spring is not necessary. It will be assumed that both Fall and Spring semesters will be taken unless I receive your one month notice before semester end. Re-registration for the following year is done every spring and due by May 1st. In order to hold your spot for the Fall, each student must participate in the summer course OR pay the equivalent of such.”
Something interesting happened with this change. Even though I give parents a reminder of the policy in November, my retention rate improved drastically. My guess is if they have to finish through December, which is the semester end, it’s really not going to save them anything so might as well stick with it through the next semester.
This small change made a WORLD of difference.
By the way, the policy above also has fixed the problem of new inquiries saying, we just want to “try” lessons for a month or so and see how we like it. A month is just not enough time to give anything a true shot. I have never had anyone not continue after the initial 5-month commitment after implementing this policy.
Tell me what small changes have made a world of difference in the policies that you have?
Interested in more ideas and support with creating a studio policy AND sticking to it?
I would be honored to help you out. Use the coupon code: POLICYSUPPORT and save $10 when you register for the course, Creating a Studio Policy and STICKING to It! There is a limited number of this coupon code available. The code will expire on Jan. 31, 2018. Start your new year off on the right track! Remember, you can get continued support from me in our private facebook group after you register!