An Open Letter to the Info-Givers in the Online Lesson Rush

by | Mar 21, 2020 | 3 comments

Category: Technique

Dear Online Lesson Info-Givers,

I see you. I’ve spoken with, or texted with, so very many of you. I hear compassion fatigue in your words.
I see your jaw tight when we Zoom, and your red eyes from screens.

I sense your weariness at the demanding of information like it’s your responsibility to provide all the training for all the things, all the time, because, Hey!, this is an emergency.

There have been literally thousands of questions from hundreds of people, all so well-meaning, yet fearful and reactionary and panicky. Many believe they are the first ones to ask a particular question. And you don’t know how many more times you can answer the “what is the best platform?” without throwing your computer out the window.

Leaders, I want you to know that the choice to not previously learn about how to incorporate online teaching into a business model does not constitute an emergency. You have the answers, but you don’t need to give them away in an instant, or for free. You have agency around your time and intellectual property.

We are seeing a whole bunch of brick and mortar business people suddenly become online businesses. They don’t yet know the set of unspoken rules and etiquette around online business. They’ll learn. We can teach them as this new normal sets in.

We will continue to help people as much as we can, in the ways that we can. We are made for such a time as this, to help transition art and minds (see what I did there?!) into a new modality and medium! And we are THRILLED to see so many people finally be able to increase their value by incorporating the tools we’ve been using for years.

If you happen to NOT be an online lessons leader, yet, and you’re reading this letter, I humbly ask that you:

  • Consider how hard the online lesson leaders are working to keep you informed.
  • Ask if the online lesson info-giver you are asking has the time to answer. Say please a lot.
  • Recognize that you are not the only one asking questions and that the leaders are also learning how to teach math to their kids. You are important. You are not more important.
  • Say thank you, a lot, when you are helped.
  • Offer to keep the economy going by sending some money their way or buying what they already offer.
  • Do search free forums like Professional Voice Teachers, New Forum of Professional Voice Teachers, NATS Chat, and if you’re a member of NATS, join the NATS members-only group.
  • Be gracious when leaders draw boundaries. They need recovery time, too.
  • Google is a thing, still.
  • Once you, too, become competent and have answers, try your best to help the next person along, yourself.

Leaders, compassion fatigue is real and I want you to take it seriously. Spend several hours offline. Go for walks, eat good food that you take time to prepare.

Get some language that you can put in your TextExpander, or Notes, or whatever, around your needs. Have it open on your computer so you can cut and paste it. Here’s some for you:
“I’ll be able to answer your question tomorrow when I am back online”
“Please check out [insert resource] and see if this helps.”
“I’ve written a blog/made a video/posted a thing on this. Here is the link”
“Thanks for reaching out. I am taking some time right now, so perhaps [insert another person’s resource] can help”

THANK YOU, Online-Lesson-Info-Giver-Leaders. THANK YOU for basically giving away what you paid hundreds and even thousands of dollars and hours to learn how to do. THANK YOU for continuing to be generous with your hearts, your minds, and your knowledge. I see you, I love you, and I am here for you.

All My BeastyBoss,

Michelle Markwart Deveaux

Michelle Markwart Deveaux (126)

As CEO of FaithCultureKiss Studios, LLC, I lead underestimated humans through the personal and professional development needed to create successful solo and team-based businesses.

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  1. Mary

    Thank YOU, Michelle, for everything you have done, are doing, and will continue to do to support business owners during this time!! You are amazing, and I support you in taking whatever time you need for yourself and your family as well! Thank you for this timely blog post and reminder that while we’re all hustling to pivot and figure things out to move online, though we’re interacting more and more with screens, actual people are behind those screens, and the Golden Rule still applies. Amen!! 🙌🏻🙌🏻🙌🏻

  2. Cynthia Vaughn

    Thank you, Michelle. This is spot on!

  3. Juline Gilmore

    Thank you, Michelle, for your leadership and encouragement!


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