So you want to become a certified professional dog trainer? Listening to your clients will make you a better professional dog trainer. How, you may ask?
Better understand your client’s training needs.
Clients typically approach dog training with a need in mind. For example, the client’s dog may pull on the leash, and the client wants his dog not to pull on the leash. But what does the client really want? A dog that walks closely on his left side? Or maybe a dog that walks anywhere within a 6 foot radius but doesn’t cause permanent injury to the client’s shoulder? There’s a pretty wide gap between those 2 goals. By listening and asking a few well-placed questions, a certified professional trainer can help to refine their client’s needs and create clear training goals.
Prepare your client for his or her involvement.
As a certified dog trainer, it’s your job to help your client understand that his participation will be necessary to his dog’s training success. This may involve the client altering his schedule, or making some changes to the dog’s (and therefore the client’s!) environment. So – as a dog training professional, you will need to listen to and understand your client’s housing situation, family relationships, and a variety of other personal details that will be important in preparing a training plan for the client’s dog. Based on the information you gather, you can make recommendations that are most suitable to your client’s personal circumstances. And you may discover a need to sell your client on the importance of making some changes that he’s not ready for.
If you’re training to be a dog trainer, then improving your listening skills should be right at the top!