Associate Trainers are your skills being undervalued?

20/06/2017 Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Google+ Associate Work,Trainers

What does it mean to be a Freelance trainer?

So, Associate Trainers are your skills being undervalued? Recently I have been reading a number of posts on social media that say that there are signs that a number of Training Providers and Companies hiring Associate Trainers are not willing to pay for their services and they are expecting the trainer to work for a low daily rate, are not paying travel or design time.

I have in the past recruited many Associate Trainers form the Training Providers perspective and agree, this is not a new problem in the industry.  However, there is light at the end of the tunnel, whilst some companies will only ever pay low rates, there are many other ones that will pay what the trainer is worth.

I would state that new associate trainers may not have the experience and knowledge as experienced ones and thus they may need to charge lower rates to get their businesses off the ground.

But If your knowledgeable, qualified and have a number of years of quality industry experience in the topics you deliver then you really should be charging what your worth.

The downside to Associate Trainer work

  • The promise of more work in the future obviously cannot be guaranteed
  • If you start on a low rate it is really difficult to increase it in the future
  • Whilst working as an associate you will not be building a list of your own clients
  • Some course design will not be yours for future use

How much preparation do you do prior to your meeting to discuss your Associate Work?

  • You need to sell yourself! Take you negotiation skills to the table
  • Do you know why they should hire you and not your competition?
  • Can you demonstrate the saving or value of the course to company?

By delivering a great account of your skills, experience, knowledge and industry experience you will stand a better chance of successfully getting the day rate you want.

Prepare and take these with you:

  • Take your CV – make sure it demonstrates your strengths, relevant experience & knowledge
  • Take copies of your qualifications
  • Take any insurance policies
  • In date CRB certificate (if relevant)
  • Industry memberships
  • Testimonials / Feedback form previous clients
  • Example course material
  • Business Card
  • Presentation (You may be asked to deliver a specific taster)

Here are some crucial things when working as an associate:

  • Make sure your agreement with the Company is written that covers your partnerships – ensure that it is mutually beneficial
  • Negotiate a fair rate and plan a review to discuss rates in the future (keep a note of positive feedback from delegates and use it at these meetings)
  • Always ensure that travel expenses are paid – added costs eat away your profit
  • Agree design time rates
  • Discuss payment of your invoices and clarify your preference – some larger organisations may want to adhere to their terms but remember you do not have to work for them!
  • Confirm your cancellation policy and stick to it! Invoice them if they fail to let you know.
  • Discuss copyright (who owns the course material?) and future use of course materials
  • Plan how you will discuss your delivery methods, approach and style
  • Take the names of two or three referees who can provide feedback on your training
  • Plan a number of course dates in advance if possible, so you can estimate the worth of working with them. Write a summary of the courses to be carried out, objectives and key milestones against timescales.
  • Specify who will arrange the venue and photocopying
  • Communicate with your contact prior to courses, after courses and in-between, ensure you build a strong relationship
  • Make sure that all training is evaluated and the information acted on – Ask for feedback after courses

Remain true to your Values

  • Work with companies that value your skills and experience
  • Respect goes both ways
  • Deliver great customer service and give the company added value
  • Keep loyal to your values and work with like-minded companies
  • Charge what your worth
  • You are your own boss – turn work that undervalues you (if possible)

Discuss with your contact how you like to work – take control of the relationship!

  • Arrival and set up times
  • Technical resources you would need
  • Room layout
  • Printing of course material
  • Fire, First Aid and Safety procedures you need to follow and relay to your delegates

Remember: The Company or Training provider you work for will be concentrating on selling and marketing the course, so take the bull by the horns and keep in touch if they are slow to.

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