I Learned to Supervise Millennials While Taking Piano Lessons: Part Six


I recently learned that much of my supervisory toolkit was developed while sitting on a piano bench.  In particular, the methods that I’ve used with success for the millennial generation are derived from things I learned during piano lessons.   This article is the final installment of my ongoing musings about drawing inspiration for better supervision from my time in piano lessons. My piano instructor spent quite a bit of time guiding me to reflect on my performances.  We often recorded my efforts so we could listen together and identify where I needed to make changes.  After each recital, we would review where improvements could be made.  We might review specific portions of the work for better voicing of the most important musical lines or restructure my pedaling to make the sound cleaner.  These reflections helped me perform better the next time. As a supervisor, I’m frequently using this technique.  In each conversation, we talk about the activities of the week and what tweaks could be made to actions taken.  With Millennials, I have found it particularly helpful to use this approach.  I ask a lot of questions, maybe brainstorm a little, and the supervisee is an active participant in the process.  If we can’t sit together for the process, I’ve also asked staff to write a list or description of what he/she might have done differently.  This also guides a reflective process. What other ways have you found to help staff members reflect on their performance? Trisha informalCheck out the previous posts in this series: Part One, Part Two, Part Three, Part Four, and Part Five