The Basics Of Company Incorporation

If you are a new business owner, you must be familiar with the procedures of company incorporation. This process involves the filing of the necessary documents with the state to begin the business registration process. There are several steps to this process. First, choose the type of company you wish to incorporate: LLP or corporation. Next, select whether you want to incorporate your company online or through paper. Then, you should pay the required fees. To get started, you should find out what the filing requirements are in your jurisdiction.

One of the most important steps to incorporation is to conduct a name search. Using a NUANS name search is the pre-requisite for incorporating your company. If you use a service that doesn’t offer this, you might want to look elsewhere. However, the process is very simple and easy to complete without all the necessary paperwork. You can also choose to incorporate your business without the need for papers. You can find more information on company incorporation and how it can benefit you and your business.

When you decide to incorporate a business, you need to comply with the SEBI requirements for public funds. Incorporated companies must meet all the regulations of a public company and have their shares listed on a recognized stock exchange. This process is essential to the smooth operation of a company and promotes capital formation. Incorporating a company is simple and does not take long. It is also free and convenient. And there are numerous benefits to doing it without the need for papers.

Once your business is officially incorporated, it is time to issue stock to its shareholders. These investors are the ones who will run the business. This stock will be used to purchase the assets or money that the company needs to grow and survive. The corporate share holders will elect a board of directors that will meet regularly. These directors may meet monthly or once a year. They will choose officers for the day-to-day operations of the company. Besides, they also adopt the articles of incorporation and company bylaws. These documents will provide guidance and direction to all parties involved.

The process of company incorporation is relatively simple and can be completed without the need for paperwork. Different types of company incorporation have different benefits and disadvantages. For example, C-Corporation is more advantageous for taxation, whereas a limited liability company is more beneficial for the owners because it does not place their personal assets at risk. Its employees will not be held personally liable for the transactions made in the name of the business.

After incorporation, corporate share holders will issue stock to the company. They will exchange their stock for money and assets. Often, these shareholders will elect an annual board of directors. These boards will meet monthly or once a year. The board will elect officers to conduct the daily affairs of the company. In addition, the directors will elect a secretary and other employees. These individuals are the people who will decide the future of the company. They will determine the strategy for the business, which will determine its future.

Incorporated companies are legal entities, which means they can be sued by other companies or individuals. Likewise, they can sue other people. The only exception is that some shareholders are not personally liable for acts done in the name of the company. Furthermore, incorporated businesses are perceived as more stable than those that are unincorporated. Hence, company incorporation adds credibility and stability. And, as a result, more people will start to trust a business that is formally incorporated.

Incorporation creates a protective sphere of limited liability. This corporate veil protects the interests of the company directors and shareholders. This is an important advantage for incorporated businesses, as it means they are protected from the financial liabilities of the owners. The legal entity of a company is different from a partnership firm. It creates a legal entity, not a partnership firm. Incorporating your business is an important step in achieving success.

Incorporating your business is a legal process that turns a common proprietorship into a formal organization. As a result, a business can avoid the risks associated with running a single-person operation. It can also increase profits. Using a company’s name in your business name can increase sales. It’s also important to remember that a corporation can be more flexible and more adaptable than a sole proprietor.

We should know that we need to start building an email list but how many of you really have it all worked out?

Recently my business friend and one of our valued magazine contributor Kate Barrett ,  released The Email Marketing Academy for beginners and intermediate business owners.

Now I’ve been using email marketing for the last 6 years and yet having gone through the whole course, I’ve still picked up lots of really useful information and have started putting new things into practise!

Kate’s videos are easy to follow and with the addition of cheat sheets, worksheets and checklists which you can download, you really will be able to create a fantastic email system and I highly recommend you take a look today.

The Email Marketing Academy is set out in 9 easy modules, taking you from the very basics, right through to delivering triggered emails and help with analysing the results!

Plus when you join Kate’s ‘The Email Marketing Academy’, you get access to the fab Facebook community where you can chat with fellow members and support  each other on your email journey and includes 2 bonus modules.

Here’s a quick overview of what’s included…

Introduction to Email Module

Module 1 – The Technology Behind Email Marketing

Module 2 – Growing Your Email List Successfully

Module 3 – Planning Your Email Marketing Campaigns

Module 4 – The Welcome Email

Module 5 – Optimising Your Creatives For Maximum Engagement

Module 6 – Creating Relevant and Engaging Content For Your Emails

Module 7 – Testing Your Emails

Module 8 – Analysing Your Campaign Results

Module 9 – Triggered Emails (Auto-responders)

Plus 2 Bonus Modules!!!

Kate has generously extended a very Special Launch Offer price for Business Rocks Magazine fans, you can find all the details over at The Email Marketing Academy.

Kate Barrett’s Special#BizOffer for The Email Marketing Academy along with another 5 #BizOffers from our expert contributors can also be found in our Special #BizOffers Free Issue 9  of the Business Rocks Magazine. 

Why I Moved My Email Lists To ConvertKit

For 4 years I happily used Aweber until I decided I needed an Email Service Provider (ESP) to fill the gap between my new membership site, my digital magazine app and my readers.

I’d heard many good things about Infusionsoft and did my own research and so at the end of December 2014 I was offered a package with Infusionsoft that looked to bridge that gap and it was time to move!

Now I have to say that moving a mailing list after a number of years is not an easy feat. It took a month of planning, file downloads and a steep learning curve, before I was finally able to switch off Aweber and start broadcasting to my lists from Infusionsoft.

I studied the system hard and connected up my membership site and paypal, but it became apparent after a few months that I was spending far too much time working on email campaigns. But at that stage my digital magazine business was still in it’s infancy and I did not have the budget to outsource all of my email marketing or the motivation to move systems again.

I  am lucky to have a local business friend who is using Infusionsoft. She recommended her Infusionsoft Certified Partner Kenda Macdonald aka Ninja extraordinaire. I signed up for her Friday webinars, which by the way are awesome and really helped me get a grip on what I could do with Infusionsoft. If you are using Infusionsoft and want to learn more or outsource some Ninja work, I’d highly recommend you get in touch with Kenda who will be sure to help you.

However after nearly a year with Infusionsoft I felt I wasn’t getting very far on my own and taking on a full time Ninja email assistant was not an option. I felt frustrated with my email marketing efforts and my campaigns weren’t gelling the way they should and it was then that I came across the new kid on the block, ConvertKit!

ConvertKit has been created for and by bloggers by Nathan Barry and came recommended to me by one of my digital publishing friends Tom Morkes from the Authority Super Summit. After more research I decided that the start of 2016 would mean another ESP move and so I once again backed up my email lists, spent a week streamlining them and re-tagging everyone and then made the smooth transition over to ConvertKit.

5 Fab ConvertKit Features I Love

1) Forms with Analytics let you track visitors and opt-in ratios for each form on my website. This makes testing and tweaking easy, especially as you can at the push of a button duplicate a form.

2) Simple Landing Pages and Website Pop Up Opt-in Boxes no need to use additional software or plugins.

3) Sequences create a series of timed emails and you can let the system do the rest while you sleep!

4) If you want to know who your customers are as well as send the right emails towards the correct individual time, the tagging and segmentation system can be easily added and is very effective.

5) Automations allow you to tag, segment and move subscribers from one sequence to the next and are very easy to use.

Using Convertkit for the last 3 months, has been like a breath of fresh air; Convertkit is everything Infusionsoft isn’t. Intuitive, visual, simple to use and yet it still lets you tag and build automations and email sequences within your email lists at an affordable cost per month. I’m currently paying just 49$ a month, which is a fraction of the cost of my old Infusionsoft contract.

However I must state that if I were able to budget for a full time email assistant like Kenda in the future, I would certainly consider using Infusionsoft again. It is undoubtedly the most fully adaptable CRM system, but right now my business does not need all the complicated bells and whistles and although lighter, ConvertKit still packs a punch and meets all my email marketing needs.

Who is Your Ideal Client? – Doable 1 #30dailydoables

Hi Everyone!  Today is officially the first day of our ‘Build Your List with 30 Daily Doables‘ blog tour. Thank you so much Emma Burford for kicking this off and hosting the first blog on your website!

Don’t forget to visit www.staceymyers.com/blogtour each day to check where the new blog posts are for that day.

We really appreciate you visiting the blogs along the blog tour. As a special thank you we are running a contest.  To enter, all you need to do is take certain actions each day – the more days you participate and the more actions you take, the more entries you receive.  Let me tell you we have had some amazing prizes donated so you want to make sure you are getting as many entries in as possible.

It’s not just on the blog that you can pick up some great prizes – share about the blog tour on social media and use the hashtag #30dailydoables for more chances to win!

This blog tour is to celebrate the launch of our latest book ‘Build Your List with 30 Daily Doables’.  If you grab the book while the blog tour is on, you receive access to some great extra bonuses – make sure you visit the launch page to get yours!

Let’s get started!

Stacey Myers

Yesterday we looked at what list building is and today we are focusing on who it is you want on your list.  How to work out who is your ideal client. Emma Burford and Stacey Myers discuss, in this short audio, why it is important to know who your ideal client is and what you might consider when choosing who it is that you want to work with.

  • Men or Women
  • Age Range
  • Employee or Self Employed
  • Married or Single
  • Children
  • Income

Don’t just think about this in terms of demographics:

What interests do they have outside of work or business?

What problem do they want to solve?

What type of personality do they have?

Are they hardworking?

Are they going to take action on what you discuss in your coaching calls?

Figuring out your target market is an on-going process, so don’t worry if you don’t get it exactly right the first time. You definitely need a place to start though.

Who do you think your ideal client is?  Can you picture him or her in your mind?  We would love to hear in the comments section below. Remember the more detailed that you get with your ideal client the easier it will be to meet their needs!  (Also, leaving a comment is one of the ways to gain extra entries!!)

The Power Of Running Writing Retreats by Karen Williams

In 2014 I decided to develop my first writing retreat in Spain. I found that my clients had good intentions to write their books, had inspiring ideas and great content, and not enough time to get it done.

When one of my clients said that she’d love to get away last year, and another, Rebecca Adams (in Spain) expressing that she’d love to run retreats, the perfect match was created. Together we developed my writing retreats. And this article comes from my hand on the last day of my latest retreat in a village nestled in the beautiful Andalucían Mountains in South West Spain.

The definition of retreat is ‘a place affording peace, quite, privacy or security’, and another definition I found is particularly lovely ‘to undergo change in one’s thinking or position’. Both of which are apt here.

Now you might be wondering why run a retreat?

For me personally, what I love about running writing retreats is giving people the time and space to get away from it all, where there are few distractions that get in the way of what they actually need and want to do, in this case writing a book. It’s also a great time to recharge, and spend time with like-minded people. The most taxing thing that you need to do is decide what to eat for breakfast!

One of the reasons that I got Rebecca on board is that it gives my clients and I safety and security as she organises everything on the ground, from breakfast to dinner, with local knowledge and language, so that everything is looked after. I know that I can do my thing without having to worry about learning the lingo, sourcing a venue in a foreign land, or worrying about how to cope if things went wrong.

How to run a retreat

If you’ve thought about running a retreat for your clients, then here are some tips to help you.

1. Get clear on who your clients are and what they’ll get from attending the retreat. Then it will make it easier to find them.

2. After you’ve sourced your venue and confirmed the details, create a one page squeezepage for your event, focusing on why people need to be there, the benefits and how you can add value – and also how to book!

3. Tell people why you are the person to listen to in your area of expertise and why people should go with you. Make sure you share your retreat through your community and contact those people who you think need to be there.

4. Share testimonials from your clients, ideally from other events, which give social proof to back up your claims. Once you’ve run retreats, video testimonials are extremely powerful.

5. Like with any event, make sure you have a marketing plan to promote the retreat, and you may choose to share it with your community through your list, via speaking or a webinar is my favourite way to generate interest.

6. If you’re running a retreat, there will also probably be the exclusivity factor as I’m sure that you’ll be working with a small number of people, so tell people about this to ensure they book up before it’s too late.

7. If you’re unsure about what you’re doing or the results that people will get, run a pilot programme, like I did in 2014 with my first writing retreat. Then you can learn what works and what doesn’t before you do it again.

8. Don’t try and do everything yourself. It’s a huge responsibility, especially if you are running retreats abroad, so getting help is essential.

Why run a retreat – here are some hints and tips from Rebecca Adams from European Coaching Retreats

Working with Rebecca on this idea led to her creating European Coaching Retreats, running her own retreats and also supporting other coaches and personal development experts to do the same. 

So whilst I’m here and actually in a conversation around the pool(!), I asked Rebecca to share why she thinks that more people should run retreats.

“It allows you to give your clients time and space, and it really adds extra value to them. There´s no rush because your session is up which means you are able to give clients that VIP day feeling of luxury. You can enjoy downtime in an informal environment, and your clients end up loving you even more.

The beauty of retreats is that your clients learn from each other and you, and as you take time out, it doesn’t feel like you’re working! I think it helps if you run a programme before everyone arrives, so that people can get to know you first, and of course, I’d recommend getting the help of a facilitator with local knowledge as it adds safety and security to your clients. Wendy Wyatt, a regular participant on Karen´s retreats, sums it up perfectly; ‘as women it´s a gift to ourselves to be in our own headspace without anyone interrupting us.’ ”

Of course, you could always take some well deserved time out by arranging a pre-visit to your location.  This gives you the chance not only to experience the surroundings, so you know what you are selling your clients, but to take advantage to plan your retreat and your programme ‘in-situ’ with Rebecca.

So if you’ve ever thought about running retreats for your clients, it’s a great chance for you to do something different and really stand out from your competitors.

Best-cloud-services

How often do you ask your business partners: “Do you guys like your cloud?” Odds are, such topics rarely arise, if ever, as it seems that many businesses make such decisions based on necessity alone, and often without doing proper research first. Most companies experiencing growth are in dire need of a scalable, secure cloud solution that will take care not just of their most immediate needs, but that will be an investment into their future and their growth.

How can a business make such a decision based on current parameters when it comes to cloud computing? Although there are no cookie-cutter solutions that fit all businesses, you can definitely consider the types of cloud available and their features when making a commitment hoping you won’t need to switch to a new provider after years of great service simply because of poor scalability. To put it simply, this is a complex decision. Let’s take a look at a few common factors to consider when choosing your cloud service so that you can rest assured your business is in good hands.

Consider your budget

Depending on your business structure, business model, as well as your future aspirations, you need to factor your digital needs into your budget forecasting and allocation. That, of course, includes the dedicated budget for your cloud platforms and services. Public cloud options are often the most low-cost types you can come across, if not even free in some instances. That, however, is reserved for one-person operations, and even in such situations, the security measures in place are often not enough to keep risk at bay.

So, you should certainly consider if you can afford a hybrid or private cloud solution that includes a private network and a private storage facility off-site, meaning that the investment might be greater, but it comes with all the more prominent security and scalability features. A dedicated cloud environment reserved for your business is also a more efficient solution for performance-heavy businesses that work with a multitude of complex operations and applications on the cloud. While the formation of an LLC is comparatively straightforward, there are many complexities that must be considered.

Safety always comes first

Much like with any other external service you evaluate and integrate into your own operations, your cloud provider needs to ensure the highest possible standards of security that will protect your data and your information from any breaches. When in doubt, talk to your potential providers and ask them specific questions that can help you determine whether their security features are on par with your needs. Where will your storage units be, and what encryption methods can they apply to protect data during transfers? Are there any specific local laws that alter the way in which your data is protected on the servers localized in certain areas?

Precisely because of greater security needs, many modern businesses choose private cloud providers that have comprehensive security measures in place to ensure optimal data protection. Everything from the utilization of a high-end firewall, all the way to implementing an automated backup strategy, your data needs to be in the safest of hands so that you can focus on growth and day-to-day operations. Another security factor is your provider’s ability to help you meet compliance standards specific to your industry, which will further protect your business and your most sensitive data.

Scalability for future growth

Although most companies plan and strategically target certain markets to ensure optimal growth over time, sometimes businesses can grow surprisingly fast and then experience growth spurt issues due to a lack of resources to keep up with such a growth rate. This is often the case with choosing the right cloud provider, too, as scalability and agility play a key role in how well a provider can keep up with your business growth down the line.

If you find yourself in need not only of a greater storage capacity, a faster-loading website during peak visit time, but also in need of a change in your infrastructure – your cloud should be able to follow suit. When you’re looking into the right solution for your current business structure, ask the right future-oriented questions to understand the capacity of your cloud provider to grow your cloud resources, as well. This is especially vital for companies that do plan and expect a surge of interest in their services, so finding the right cloud is a long-term solution, not a temporary one.

Support and assistance capabilities 

Even after thorough reading and education, you’ll likely never have the in-depth knowledge of the cloud world to successfully or single-handedly manage your own cloud solution. Just like with any other aspect of running your business, you need to anticipate setbacks and obstacles. But in this case, you won’t be able to handle them alone, and you’ll need the help and support of your cloud provider in a timely manner.

Each and every cloud solution, no matter the model or the provider, comes with specific support options. Look into who you will communicate with in case of an emergency or an issue, so that you can go back to running your business smoothly. Some offer an online chat service, others will stick to emails, while some will provide you with a dedicated point of contact for your specific solution. 

This is a decision not be taken lightly, and choosing the right provider will shape your company’s ability to outgrow its current state, hence the need to make an informed choice based on your needs. Take these factors into account and find a partner to provide you with the solution your business will thrive with.

6 Super Speedy Steps To Writing A Non-Fiction Book

Writing a non-fiction book doesn’t have to feel like climbing Ben Nevis.

You don’t have to put it off until retirement or until you have more time or less clients to worry about. It doesn’t have to bring you out in hives or feed your inner saboteur. Writing a non-fiction book can easily be something you build into your everyday schedule. With bite-sized chunks, the right strategies, targets, deadlines and regular baby steps, you can do this much quicker than you think.

Start by breaking the process into these 6 Super Speedy Steps.

1. Your Specialist Subject: think about all the things you could write about. What can you talk about without coming up for air, what’s your greatest passion, what would be your specialist subject on Mastermind if you sat in the big, black chair? Don’t get too carried away here, though, even if you know a lot of stuff about a lot of stuff. Be finicky about your specialist subject because knowing it inside out means you’ll have much less research to do.

2. Research: take a look at what the competition is up to. What kind of books are already out there? Spend some time looking through the Amazon store to find out what’s for sale. Use different keywords for your searches and see how many different variants come up for your specialist subject.

3. Brainstorm: using a big sheet of paper (or the back of a wallpaper sample) and your coloured pens, brainstorm all your book ideas. Don’t just think about the potential content, either. Think about the structure, how you might want to publish it (ie, Kindle/physical print), whether you want to include case studies/use a diary format/add testimonials/ask someone to write you a foreword/add a glossary/FAQs. Squeeze every last drop of creative juice out of your head until there’s nothing left. Then stick it on your wall and keep adding to it when another idea pops up.

4. Vision: having a vision for your book makes it real. So take some time to think about the reason why you’re writing your book, who is it for, what results are you anticipating for your readers, will your book be the start of a series? Use the who, what, where, when, why and how prompts to build your vision.

5. Write: here’s the exciting bit. Writing little chunks every day is going to help you reach the finish line. Set yourself daily targets (500-1000 words is enough) and stick to them like glue. If you struggle for time, then scale back on your client work / appointments for a couple of weeks. If you can’t, then look at the biggest time-stealers in your life and get rid of them until you finish (I’m thinking Facebook, TV, going to the pub, cleaning, chores and cooking). Find some help – partners and children can pull their weight a bit more for a month quite easily. Outsource some of your business tasks to free you up. Remember, this isn’t forever, it’s temporary and at the end of it you’ll be so incredibly proud of the results.

6. Polish: once you’ve got that first draft ready you can start proofreading / editing. If this is something you aren’t too good at/you hate doing/is going to eat into your time too much, then outsource it. But please don’t skip it. This could make or break the success of your book. No matter how utterly fabulous your content is, if it’s got spelling mistakes, typos and poor formatting, you’ll get bad reviews.

“Your Stories” Tracy Rose 

On-the-Go Music Lessons To this day, I have fond memories of the days but there were no web search engines and my dial-up internet connection allowed me to peruse a list of interesting websites. Back then, in the early 1990s, I never imagined that in years to come, I would be using this same technology, in its more advanced state, to run an online music school, teaching students around the world with a group of brilliant teachers located in different countries.

My love for music began when I started playing the piano at the age of six, quickly working through the ABRSM Exam Grades while at school in Barnsley (South Yorkshire, UK), a small town who’s principal industry was, for many years, coal mining. Once hooked and knowing that music was where my life would be, I moved to London to study piano with world renowned teachers at the London College Of Music (UK).

My mission to share my love of music through teaching piano professionally, has taken me through various schools while working for the local government’s Manchester Music Services (UK) and working as a Secondary and Primary School Music Teacher, while all the time, teaching private lessons.

Before I became a full time online teacher, my last post was Head Of Music at a large International School in Málaga, Spain. I was there from its inauguration in 2000 and solely in charge of building a large music department from the ground up.

Wherever I was teaching, I never had enough hours in the week to meet the demand for private piano lessons. Working full time at the International School, I had filled, with private lessons, all my ‘free’ time during the working day and hours before and after school. The school was a very long drive from my home which is in a small rural village, so taking on more students at weekends was impossible. Then it dawned on me that I could make a dent in my student waiting list, by teaching students from my home, online. Fortunately by this time, 2013, the internet had speeded up since the days of my old dial-up connection and supported an array of free tools, some enabling live, real-time video links, ideal for teaching online.

Three of my students, all sisters, were thrilled to pioneer this 21st century teaching medium, when I asked if they would like to try an online lesson. With my many years of teaching experience, I was slightly sceptical and felt I was demanding a lot from the technology. When it came to it, I actually found that I couldn’t fault any aspect of this first online lesson. On the contrary, many advantages unfolded; no travelling time to lessons for me or students was needed and students, who otherwise might have had to travel to my studio, could take lessons at home, working better in their own environments. Above all, I could reach students who might not have access to a local music teacher, or have demanding lifestyles or relocate often, and students could reach me and stay with me as their teacher, wherever they were or wherever they moved to. Online lessons were so successful, that I soon opted to resign from the school and teach online from home.

After a lot of careful consideration, especially for the name of my essential website, I opted to call the new venture ‘Music Lessons Anywhere’.

At the outset, I didn’t want to restrict the concept of the venture to just piano lessons. Although using ‘Music Lessons anywhere’ as the domain name for the website, it made it slightly more difficult to target specifically piano students looking for online piano lessons. However, I wanted to keep the door open for other online instrumental and music lessons in the future.

My existing students switched to online lessons with ease and my new website quickly started to generate enquiries from students all over the world.

It was essential to make the technology work for me and so a standard practise is to provide formatted lesson notes, typed out roughly during lessons on a tablet and honed and emailed to each student after each lesson. These provide the student with a record of what was covered during the lesson, outlines strengths and weaknesses, and where their all important practise should be focussed between lessons. Students can also easily track their progress over the weeks. I can record short digital movies to email to students, demonstrating how to tackle difficult parts of their playing. Students can play these over and over at will, of course. Whole or parts of lessons can be captured as videos, simply by students taking screen video recordings, students can email audio records of extracts of their pieces for me to check… with the tools available and more being developed all the time, we have a very powerful medium to exploit.

By working online, people in places where it’s difficult to find music teachers can take instrumental as well as music lessons. Some smaller international schools aren’t able to offer music as a subject, so music lessons can be brought in from outside as and when needed, without any long term investment or commitment.

When I was a classroom music teacher, one of my duties was to organise and stage an annual concert for my students. I realised I could do the same now, with all my online students. as distance was no object, by beaming their performances from wherever they were through the internet, onto a screen in a venue in my small town.

I staged my first online concert in 2014. The online students were joined by some of my local students, physically in the venue. So the event, with a live audience in the venue actually felt like a conventional concert, despite most performers being thousands of miles away in different time zones all over the world. The remote students were able to watch the concert as it was streamed, live online as a webcast. Their friends and families, wherever they were, could also watch the entire concert live. We have a chat facility open as part of the webcast and at the third annual concert, I received a message from my music teacher from my school days, Mr Jeff Tyler, who was watching the concert in my home town of Barnsley, UK! I hadn’t seen nor heard from Mr Tyler since I left school but he had read about the ground breaking concert in an article on the local newspaper.

Keeping the sense that Music Lessons Anywhere is a school and a community of teachers and students, is an essential part of what makes it special for me and I’m sure, all who are involved. We stand out from the crowd of online music lesson providers because of our unique approach. Around that and throughout the year, I organise online workshops which cover a wide range of activities from subjects geared towards exam students like Theory and Aural Workshops, to fun Musical Get-Togethers where students can play their pieces to other students around the world, Practise Partners, Masterclasses and even the ever popular educational game, Online Musical Bingo! Workshops are completely free of charge for regular Music Lessons Anywhere students, so they are inclusive and are part of what makes students feel that they are part of the school; meeting, learning and interacting with other students, no matter where they are located.

Within less than a year, all my teaching hours (and more!) were at capacity. With a steady pace of enquiries, I decided it was time to take on another teacher.

Working online, with the world is at your fingertips, means there are no restrictions of working with people locally. I found myself talking with potential piano teachers where distance was no obstacle for them to work alongside me. All of us in our different geographical locations would be under one virtual ‘Music Lessons Anywhere’ roof.

Chris, became my first new found piano teacher. I had shortlisted Chris from several candidates and it was obvious he shared my approach to teaching, primarily serving students’ needs, making lessons fun and working outside of the box, while also embracing the technology. I set him up with a trial lesson with some of my students, which I sat in on (all of us in different locations around the world of course). Chris easily proved himself and I was both overjoyed and relieved that I had found someone I could work with. I was no longer alone… well in distance maybe, but that was irrelevant.

Although we covered all aspects of what teaching piano could offer, from ABRSM and other exam courses, to teaching students who just wanted to learn one piece or take lessons just for fun, even tailor making lessons geared towards individual students’ needs, I realised our potential was more than just that. So I added several subjects to the website, including a Fast Track Grade 5 Theory course, group piano lessons, theory and homeschool music.

Not long after Chris had joined, through my Music Lessons Anywhere Facebook page, I met an exceptionally talented singer and song writer, Carol. I set up a singing lesson for her to conduct, with one of my piano students who was keen to learn to sing proficiently and was also keen on song writing. The lesson was outstanding. Carol, our new singing teacher was extraordinary and transformed my student’s voice in one session alone! Chris, Carol and I had the beginnings of an online music school.

Over the next few months we were joined by Liz, a violin teacher based in Spain, Mix, a saxophone & clarinet teacher currently not based in any one country but heading for Spain, Kate, a bassoon and clarinet teacher from the UK and most recently, Stefan, a piano accordion teacher in Macedonia, Adriaan a drum teacher in Holland and Stephie, a piano teacher of exceptional talent, who teaches at the highest levels possible. All essentially share my teaching philosophy.

Dan, a guitar, violin and piano teacher, and composer, joined us after I received an enquiry from someone in the USA needing music dictation practise, on the run up to taking his ‘Fellowship of the American Organ Guild’ written exam (one of the highest music exam levels attainable). Dan was recommended to me for this work by Liz and through Dan’s intimate knowledge and experience of composing using music technology and his exceptional teaching skills, we have now added notation and composing software, Sibelius, Cubase and composition lessons to the already comprehensive list of instrumental lessons that Music Lessons Anywhere is able to provide. Chris, wrote of his lessons with Dan, “Now I can pretty much do anything with Sibelius. Many orchestral writing concepts were taught to me by Dan in such a short period of time. When I ask Dan a series of questions, he doesn’t waste time and always makes sure I understand the answers. There isn’t a better teacher in the world.

Over the last couple of years I have noticed a  significant change in attitude towards online teaching. At times I felt that potential students who were sceptical of online teaching needed to try an online lesson to convince themselves it actually worked. Now it feels it has become an important part of mainstream education.

Meeting new people from all over the world, students and teachers alike, is one of the biggest highlights of teaching online for me. Bringing them into our global school, whether it’s for just a handful of lessons or for years, for them to become part of Music Lessons Anywhere instead of working in isolation, is also special to me.

With opportunities for us that are boundless and ‘boundaryless’, it is a very exciting time for Music Lessons Anywhere and for live, online education generally. As technology improves and provides more powerful and innovative tools, so we seek new, innovative, creative and engaging ways of teaching and bringing people together to learn and realise their potential, where not so long ago, it was perhaps not possible.