The Unexpected Benefits of Piano Lessons: Reasons Your Kids Should Join One 48

The Unexpected Benefits of Piano Lessons: Reasons Your Kids Should Join One

The following article is a guest post.

Learning any music instrument, such as the piano, isn’t just an art form, it is an opportunity to learn and improve on a number of different skills in both adults and kids.

It is more than just basic music training, as multiple research studies have proven that it has a profound impact on one’s brain by promising advantages that last a lifetime, especially in the life of a kid.

Why do we say that? Here are some genuinely good reasons why, as a parent or teacher, you must encourage your kid/student to learn the piano.

1. Improves their academic performance.

Multiple studies have proven that kids who started piano classes at an early age perform better in school.

Their spatial cognitive development, as opposed to other kids in their class, was higher. They were especially good in mathematics, the study concluded. This happened due to the ability to focus and concentrate better, enhancing their overall performance.

2. It boosts a child’s ability to handle stress.

The stress of stage fright can easily be overcome when kids are encouraged to perform in recitals or in front of an audience.

Besides this, it could also serve as a means to express different emotions one may feel such as frustration, anxiety, depression or happiness.

Moreover, by learning to play the piano, kids also learn valuable lessons such as goal-setting, dedication and self-discipline, etc.

3. It teaches kids how to split concentration.

One may notice that when learning the piano, it seems almost impossible to coordinate both hands to play a tune. Since all the fingers are playing something different, learning this coordination can be very frustrating.

But like it is said, practice makes perfect.

The more a child practices, the better this coordination becomes. This coordination, as a result, improves a child’s split concentration allowing them to focus on more than one thing at a time.

4. They learn to embrace their successes and disappointments.

Another great skill one learns from playing the piano is to accept defeat and criticism.

There will be times when a chord will be missed and the tune will be disrupted. This will be responded to, by criticism and disappointment, but the child will still continue to play after that and accepting defeat of the failure as a learning process, rather than discouragement, is a skill that can be learned when kids play the piano.

5. Gives them stronger hand muscles.

It develops dexterity in kids, giving them the strength that only adults have in their hands, at an early age. But in order to achieve the right posture of the hands, it is pivotal that the right techniques of playing the piano be practiced and that too, in the presence of an expert piano teacher in institutions like the Forest Piano Academy.

6. It increases their social participation.

The ability to perform in front of a large audience isn’t an easy skill to learn.

Even the most professional of performers suffer from stage fright. Since playing the piano requires that it be played in front of others, it boosts a kid’s social skills and alleviates stage fright.

This further helps kids to become more and more expressive and social with their friends and family.

7. It makes a child aurally aware.

Whether one struggles with the pitch or has natural born talent, paying the piano will only augment it. Kids who play are more likely to recognise and differentiate between different tones, chords and intervals, making it easier for them to learn music later in their life.

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The Five Elements of Flawless Customer Experience 6

The Five Elements of Flawless Customer Experience

Providing a flawless customer experience is the ultimate goal for any business.

There’s a lot that goes into creating a customer experience that keeps your clients coming back for more. In fact, there’s so much involved that it can almost seem overwhelming.

However, providing a flawless customer experience becomes much easier when you approach the task through these five distinct elements:

Time
Understanding
Ownership of Emotions
The Unexpected
Follow-Through

Time

When it comes to your customers’ satisfaction, time is essential. Think of how a great experience at a new restaurant quickly sours if you’re left waiting for your food to arrive. Think of how your excitement over a great department store sale turns into frustration as you stand in line for what seems like hours.

Time is your most valuable resource and it is up to you to make sure you’re using your customers’ time wisely.

This is why restaurants have comfortable waiting areas with drinks and appetizers, or why airports have lounges with restaurants, shops, and even bars.

If your customers are being forced to wait for a service, make them feel as if their time spent is not wasted. The more positive drivers you offer customers, the less likely they are to grow dissatisfied with their experience.

Think of how you can implement this in your own business. Are there places where you can help fill customers’ time? Are there places where technology can be used to cut down on the time it takes to complete a task? Remember, it’s the customers’ time that should be valued, not your own.

Understanding

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You must understand what your customers want, when they want it, and how.

While this may seem daunting, getting a better understanding of your customers doesn’t take millions of dollars, complex data analytics, and a degree in psychology. Instead, all it takes is a simple look. Watch their process, engage with them, ask them questions, and listen to them.  

How are customers interacting with your product? What’s the first thing they do when they enter your store? What’s the last thing they do before they leave? How long are they spending in each department? Do you notice anything that hampers their experience?

Take a look at your competitors. How are your potential customers interacting with them? What does this business offer that you don’t or vice versa? What is your, as Harvard Business School professor Clayton M. Christensen says, “job to be done?” What are your customers hiring your product or service to accomplish? Understand why your users are turning to your products.

Ownership of Emotions

Many companies have already taken hold of their customers’ emotions, though cynically. Subliminal advertising is a key example. However, the ownership of emotions does not have to be cynical. When used correctly, it can be the “holy grail” for companies.

Owning emotions begins with the aforementioned ability to understand. When you truly understand a customer’s choices and then act to make the experience better, you’re building a relationship of trust. That trust is the foundation of emotional ownership.

One way to build this trust is to reduce the “emotional” noise that surrounds your customers. Let them know that, even on their worst day, your business or product is there for them and that it will be a constant in their lives.

Think of restaurants and the long wait times you have to endure when they’re busy. Think of how angry—or “hangry”—you feel as you stand around, waiting for your table, and listening to your stomach growl. However, think of how some restaurants are able to reduce that emotional noise by serving you finger foods and drinks as you wait.

Also, seek to understand what emotionally motivates your customers.

Why should they be motivated to visit your store or use your product? To feel confident? Free? Unique? Secure? Successful? Research shows that all human beings are motivated by one of those factors.

The Unexpected

Experiences become stronger and more memorable when they’re accompanied by an element of surprise. Surprise can be addictive, which will only keep your customers coming back for more.

Think about mailing your customers or clients small packages with gifts and swag. Everyone loves to get mail and everyone loves free stuff, especially when it’s least expected.

A surprise doesn’t have to be a huge flash mob (though it could be!). Hand out snacks at your store. Is it a cold day? Give your customers hot chocolate or warm punch. Is it a client’s birthday? Send a card! Even a small note of thanks for a customer’s business is a nice little surprise.

The most important thing to remember: simply be sincere and don’t become predictable. Chocolates on hotel pillows were once a great surprise for guests. However, now that their wow-factor has faded, hotels are continuously trying to get back to the “unexpected.”

Follow-Through

You’ve made promises and established goals. The only thing that’s left is to follow through on them. This starts with creating your mission statement, one that you, your employees, and your customers can commit to it. This will define your customer experience.

Your mission statement must promise to impact yourself/your business, the community, or the world. It may commit to impacting one, or all three. However, whatever it promises, you must follow through on. Your customers’ trust, and thus their experience, depends on it.

More about these five elements can be discovered in Unforgettable: Designing Customer Experiences that Stick, to be published in 2018.

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Kyle H. David has made a career in technology and entrepreneurship for nearly 20 years. In 2001, he formed The Kyle David Group, now KDG. Over the past 16 years, KDG has grown at a rapid pace, attracting clients ranging from the United States Senate to major financial institutions, international nonprofits, and Division I universities.