5 Signs You'd Be A Successful Accent Instructor or Speech CoachJul 28, 2021
You don’t need to be an expert on every dialect of English or have worked with thousands of students to be a successful accent instructor or speech coach.
In fact, the qualities that make a successful accent instructor may be a little surprising to you. It honestly is not about having a ton of knowledge or experience.
Here are the top 5 signs that you’d be a successful accent instructor or speech coach:
1. You’re a good listener
I think a big part of my success has been that my students actually enjoy spending time with me, because I LISTEN to them. And I’m not faking it either!
My students are highly accomplished, really interesting people. I enjoy listening to them and learning about their lives. Most people don’t get enough time talking about themselves to an interested listener and this makes my sessions enjoyable for both of us.
2. You know how to keep a conversation going
You need your student to talk. You need to hear how they sound in real conversations so you can offer feedback. This means that sometimes you have to ask a lot of questions, which can feel a little unnatural. And sometimes, you MUST HOLD YOUR TONGUE, even there is something that you really want to say, because you don’t want to stop the flow of your student’s speech.
My job as a speech coach is to give my students as much conversational practice as possible in each session, so I need to keep THEM talking (and sometimes keep my opinions to myself). I’m a natural introvert and I’m good at shifting the attention to other people, so this is fine with me.
3. You’re patient
These students are learning a brand-new skill! You need to keep correcting them and encouraging them. Sometimes it feels like I’m saying the same things over and over, but my students need tons of repetition to improve the way they sound. And a big part of our job is to coach confidence in our students.
4. You love languages and learning about other cultures
When you teach accents and pronunciation, you will be working with students from all over the world. I am so grateful that I’ve had the opportunity to learn about other cultures, places, traditions, languages, and religions, first-hand, from my students. It’s one of the things that I love best about what I do.
5. You’re willing to show up consistently to let students know how you can help them
You have to be willing to be show up consistently to let students know how you can help them. In other words, you have to be willing to actively market your services.
This can mean on social media, on a blog, in Facebook groups, on Clubhouse, even paid advertising, whatever...but you need to show up consistently and you need to be clear about how your student’s lives will be better after working with you.
I guess what I want you to understand is that students don’t just magically find you because you put up a website or add accent modification to your list of services.
Marketing your services isn't difficult, but it takes consistency and a real plan for finding students.
The good news is, I've been through it and I can help you with that.
In the marketing section of the program I walk you step by step through my proven plan for finding and enrolling a steady stream of students. It's the same plan that I used to fill my caseload, and then some! I now have a months long waiting list, so I know my marketing is working.
And you shouldn't be afraid of marketing! Marketing, when done the right way, is just clearly explaining how you can help and getting that message out consistently.
So much of this work is simply listening to our students, helping them identify their most common pronunciation errors, then practicing with them to correct these errors. If you are an SLP, ESL teacher, actor, singer, or other voice professional, you are probably much more ready to do it than you realize!
Make Money Teaching Accents & Pronunciation: Free Getting Started Guide
Download the guide to learn about the skills, software, certifications, and other basics that you'll need to start working with paying students.