People attending retreats and classes are looking for a few basic things, every time. Tending to these basics will help build your reputation as an interesting teacher whose services are sought out.
A topic that’s current and desirable.
Stay aware of current trends and keep pace with your potential students. When the market has been saturated with classes covering a topic you enjoy teaching, retire it for a few years and then bring it out again. When offering new classes, be on the cutting edge but not so unfamiliar that no one understands why they’d want to learn what you’re offering.
Information that’s easy to understand and remember.
There are three primary learning styles – through language, experience, and visuals. Most people learn more easily one way than the others. Including all three learning styles in each workshop will provide everyone with a variety of opportunities to learn what you’re teaching.
Teach in bite-size segments.
Even the most attentive people can become lost during long lectures or repetitive activities. Your students will stay more present and engaged if you shift what’s happening every 15 – 20 minutes.
Provide hand-outs that cover the key points.
Include some graphics and color where possible and make them short and easy to read. Include your name and contact information – you never know who may get the chance to read them.
Challenges and rewards.
Most people don’t pay to attend retreats and classes just to hang out for a few hours. Give them something that challenges their skills and let them know you’ve noticed when they step up to the challenge.
An enjoyable experience.
Make sure the setting for your event is supportive of the work you’re doing and is physically comfortable and accessible for your students. Even if you’re teaching something that’s physically challenging, provide some physical comforts during resting times.
Provide opportunities for people to get to know one another, spend some quality time together, and feel loved and supported personally in addition to the love and support provided to the whole group. Paired or small group activities are a great way to do this and are easy to fit in when they’re done in segments of 5 – 15 minutes.
Just as important as all the rest of these things, remember that we love to laugh. Even in the midst of learning powerful lessons, healing skills, or other challenges, there’s always something to have fun with. Find the humor and share it with your students. Enjoy the humor they bring in. Laugh with them often throughout the event.