Know music inside and out. A conductor must understand all aspects of music including tempo, dynamics and phrasing. Obtain a music education through the private instruction of another musician, preferably a conductor, with established credentials or obtain a degree in music at a college or university
Play every instrument. While you may not be proficient in every instrument, you should have the ability to play each instrument in the orchestra. This includes being able to play at least 1 string instrument and the piano. Sir Henry Wood suggested the violin as the stringed instrument of choice.
Develop sight reading. You need a near perfect ability to sight read music to be a successful conductor. Your first and foremost goal is to reproduce the music of the composer as the composer intended it. Your interpretation of the music comes across through the musicians. Every element of the piece is executed at your direction.
Possess sensual skills. A conductor must have the ability to hear the different pitch of each individual instrument while listening to the tone of the group in order to get the correct harmonic balance. You also need rhythmic and interpretative senses when you conduct
Gesture clearly and precisely. Some view the gestures of a music conductor as an art form. Others view it as a skill that can be learned. Regardless of how you view it, a conductor must make precise gestures with their hands, heads, bodies and baton in order to get the correct response from the musicians. Each gesture elicits a different response from the musicians
Give constructive criticism. The conductor must maintain leadership of the group. You need a strong sense of discipline and the ability to constructively critique the musicians. Being a music conductor will require that you get along with a variety of personalities
Organize the music program. Conductors are responsible for directing rehearsals and performances. They also plan programs, designate soloists, and hire and fire musicians. Your ability to form a group and get it to do what is needed will determine your success of failure as a music conductor.