gym bagFollowing up on the topic of winging it… reposted from April 9 2013 – John.

What if you could get inside the minds of your students? It's common to hear compliments from your regulars about what you are doing well, but what about the students who come once and decide never to return? Imagine that you are unpacking your gym bag after class.  There is a note sitting on top. It says…

Dear Instructor,

I regularly take your Thursday class, which is scheduled to begin at 5:30. Every week, before I can even consider coming to class,  I must pack my gym bag on Wednesday night, arrive to work early on Thursday morning, and arrange for someone else to get my kids from school. But that is just half of it.  To actually participate, I must also leave work early, fight downtown traffic and get in line before the rest of the people who want to ride too. To say that I put a great deal of effort into being on a bike each Thursday is an understatement.

Last week, you arrived in the studio at 5:33. Class did not begin until 5:41, but it ended promptly at 6:25. In the 44 minutes of riding we fit in, you interrupted or skipped the music 4 times. You changed your mind about what we were doing 3 times. You made 6 excuses and gave 0 apologies.

I could understand if once you ran late or had a mishap with your iPod. But this has happened before.  It is becoming evident that you do not care about your class as much as I do.  I have to work my butt off just to be there, so I find it upsetting that you don't put any time or thought into planning.  I don't think I am asking too much when I say, please do not come to class unprepared. It is frustrating when I have worked so hard to beat traffic, but you arrive late.  It is insulting that you are still arranging your playlist during the warm up. And how can this workout be effective when you change the plan (if it can even be called that) whenever a new song comes on?

You should know that you will not be seeing me in your class in the future. I will be contacting management to explain my concerns. I have to show up to my job prepared. Is it too much for you to do the same?

Sincerely,

Prepared Patrick

This is an example of a pretty serious student who has particular needs and high expectations of his class.  Are his concerns valid?  How would you recommend this instructor respond?

Originally posted 2016-09-28 09:54:46.

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