Archive for training to be a trainer

Professional Dog Trainers Making an Impact on Their Community

Lately, I’ve been thinking a lot about a book I read a couple of years ago. I’ve been thinking about how this book can help professionals advance their career in dog training. This book is called “Small Giants” and was written by Bo Burlingham who is an Editor at Large of Inc. Magazine.

Burlingham highlights eight businesses that have opted to stay small (even though they have the potential to go very big) and become exceptional employers and members of their community. These businesses are very diverse (from a rock musician to a storage company to a New York City restaurateur!); however, they have certain things in common:

  • They want to be the best at what they do;
  • They’ve been recognized by independent bodies for their work and/or community contributions;
  • They’ve had the opportunity to raise a lot of capital and become large companies, but chose another route;
  • They have company goals that include issues outside the main goal of making money – i.e., community, work environment, and lifestyle goals;
  • In order to achieve their non-monetary goals, they’ve opted to remained privately owned.

Now, I know that most dog trainers are not going to meet some of these criteria. Still, I think there are some wonderful lessons we can learn from these businesses about how to get involved in our community in important ways and how to treat our employees so they are loyal to the company. And, from the money point of view, in many ways, this book meshes very nicely with the Law of Attraction. Because these businesses have loftier goals than simply making money they attract good employees, goodwill from the community, good relationships with vendors and clients and money!

This was a fun book to read. It isn’t technical – it’s more like someone’s personal story – but it’s very inspiring and uplifting. I’ll leave the details for you to read about, and I highly recommend that you do.

Professional Dog Trainers Making an Impact in Their Community

When Beginning Your Dog Trainer Career, Avoid the Trap of Under-valuing Yourself and Your Services

It’s very common for trainers just starting out in their dog trainer career to under-price their services, thinking that will bring them more business. However, this technique may very well backfire on you! There are two types of price shoppers. Customer A is looking for the cheapest price; customer B is looking for the price range.

Think about which customer you would rather work with. Client A is looking for a bargain; these clients are often demanding, have unrealistic expectations, and get angry when you don’t meet their every demand. Client B is trying to find out what the going rate is for trainers in their area; they are generally more realistic in their expectations. Which client would you rather work with? And – more importantly, which client is more likely to spread good word of mouth, and to whom?

Under-pricing your services not only brings in the wrong client, it may actually lose you customers. If people are price shopping to determine the going rate and you are priced toward the bottom of the range, there will be a lot of potential clients who feel you are not as qualified as those in the middle- to high-end of the range.

Don’t fall into this trap – if you have completed your training to be a trainer, are beginning your dog training career, and feel you are qualified to receive money for your services, then price yourself in the mid-range. If you feel you are as qualified (or more qualified) than most of your completion, price yourself in the high-range. You’ll find yourself attracting a more desirable clientele.

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