I started attending formal vocal classes when I was 8 years old. Born and brought up in a Bengali family, where everyone from the previous generation is trained in vocal or some musical instrument, I was prepared for it. What I wasn’t prepared for was singing in front of others. I just couldn’t find enough reasons to push myself to a situation where I have to be judged for my singing skills. Wasn’t school enough?
After exactly a week, the music teacher gave up saying ‘Sumitra doesn’t sing loud enough for us to hear’. How could he train and prepare me for my 1st year’s certification? Next, my own aunt offered to teach me, but the problem persisted.
Finally, one day my neighbour told my mother about a teacher who doesn’t teach the conventional way, but is quite good. However, he didn’t believe in the certification system. His students don’t undergo any certification; they just learnt to sing. Competitions were allowed but not certification.
I was scared soul on my first day and knew that this was my last chance. I passed my test, although I don’t know how and why he agreed to train me.
Over time, my confidence grew. His confidence in me got stronger and I could tell he was silently proud of me.
Today when I reflect on what was special about his approach and map it to my understanding of coaching, I realize that intent and methodology are inseparable. While my other teachers focused only on methodology to drive results, he blended both. His intent was to help us learn classical music in its true essence; the others focused more on certification results and not always the real learning. That’s why I think his methods were unusual.
Here are his 5 principles of learning that I discovered from Guruji’s old style training
What is your take on intent and methodology? What drives you as a coach?
Author : Sumitra Paul Chatterjee
I Train Consultants India Pvt. Ltd.
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