September 16

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Indirect Language

A music school administrator might want to say something like this to a teacher:

Your teaching is difficult for students to understand. You're late for lessons on a regular basis. And, the manner in which you talk to people makes them uncomfortable. That's why you're losing students.

But in the name of being politically correct, they'll probably say something like this:

It's possible that perhaps your students aren't understanding you as clearly as they could. Are you staying on schedule? Maybe a different approach could be interesting. Why do you think you're losing students?

It's true. To be unclear is to be unkind.

And to be passive is to shortchange the person you're talking to, and the point you're trying to get across.

Sure, one is more uncomfortable than the other. But it gets the job done.

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About Jonathan Roberts

I am the founder and director of the South Shore Piano School, and I have been teaching the piano for nearly 20 years. My work centers around bringing music to the lives of kids, parents, and adults in an enriching, meaningful way. At the South Shore Piano School, my incredible colleagues and I accomplish this through skill-based teaching, community, and an innovative, people-first business model. You can read more about me here.


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