Praised for being "an entrepreneur bringing innovation to classical music" (Forbes), Chad Goodman serves as Conducting Fellow of the New World Symphony and as an Assistant Conductor to the San Francisco Symphony, where he has worked with Esa-Pekka Salonen, Manfred Honeck, Daniel Harding and Simone Young among others.

As Founder and Artistic Director of the contemporary music group Elevate Ensemble, Goodman commissioned fifteen works from American composers and collaborated with photographers, poets and chefs to bring vibrant performances to unique venues like yoga studios and art warehouses.

Goodman has served as Music Director of the Contra Costa Chamber Orchestra, rehearsal conductor for the San Francisco Ballet and Conducting Fellow for the Atlantic Music Festival. Outside of performing, he teaches young musicians the business and entrepreneurial skills needed to navigate the music world in his workshop “You Just Earned a Music Degree. Now What?”

Goodman’s mentors include Michael Tilson Thomas and Alasdair Neale.

More information at

The three rituals that follow can all be accomplished in under ten minutes. Take care of these at the start of your morning and your music career will see direct benefits.

  1. Make your phone gig-friendly

How: Open your phone contacts and click on the name of the first musician that you come to. Make sure that they are listed by their full name (no nicknames or last initials!) Next, update or add their email address. Finally, include their instrument/profession. (On an iphone, simply place this detail in the  “company” section.) Repeat this task for the next two or three contacts. 

Why: At some point in your career, you will need to find a substitute musician for a rehearsal. Maybe a colleague calls in a panicked state, explains that her accompanist just broke his finger on the day of her recital, and begs you to put her in touch with any pianists you can recommend. 

By simply typing “piano” into your contact search box, you will have immediate access to the names and information for every pianist you know. From there, you can quickly share the contact information with your colleague. You’ll be a lifesaver.

  1. Use messaging via text or social media platforms to keep your name relevant in your music social circles

How: Your next daily ritual will be to reconnect with one or two former colleagues/mentors, so open your preferred messaging app. This can be as simple as a quick text asking how they are doing, or a post or message on facebook in which you reminisce about a great concert you two played together.

You’ve probably met many people in your career, so how do you decide who to connect with first? Try categorizing your connections by a specific detail such as the school, class, or event where you met. Did you attend the Aspen Music Festival in 2011? If so, reconnect with 2-3 people you met that summer. Continue daily until you’ve messaged everyone you remember meeting from said event.

Why: The idea is that you want your name to be popping up in music social circles around the world. You never know, that old cabin mate from Interlochen Arts Camp you just messaged might be the one who connects you to the biggest breakthrough in your career. Take initiative, and be the one to reach out.

  1. Use entrepreneur-centric and inspirational media on YouTube and social media channels to improve your music career

How: “Like”, “follow” and “subscribe” to one entrepreneurial, financial or business journal every day. Do the same with motivational speakers and life coaches. When an article or video from one of these sources pops up in your feed, simply click on it and read. The more frequently you click on these suggested articles, the more they will continue to appear in your feed. 

Why: As musicians, we must constantly remain inspired and motivated. It is essential that we do not limit our search to the music world alone. An article on how to efficiently pay off student loans or a motivational quote about perseverance might be all it takes to make your day better.

My challenge to you: wake up ten minutes earlier than usual tomorrow, follow these directions, and start your day with a burst of productivity.

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