Normally my articles are aimed toward the civilian conceal carry crowd. Just this one time I am going to redirect that aim back towards my fellow instructors. This is just a quick read to give you some thought so hopefully it will be received in the same spirit it is sent.
On the topic I am speaking about today, instructors fall into three basic categories: 1) They own their range 2) They work for a range 3) They must rent/lease time at a range. I am really only talking to group three.
I titled this Instructor/Ambassador. Now I know that everyone realizes we are all ambassadors to our customers and the public, but how many of you are good ambassadors to the ranges you are teaching at? If all you are doing is paying a 10% class fee when you happen to need the range I am going to suggest you’re not really that good. It might work, and you might never have any problems with them, but remember that they are in business too, and your business, and that of the next instructor that has to talk with them, kinda depends on them.
So with that in mind try to think about ways to add value to their business. Have you friended them on FB? That way you can promote their business and their events. Make arrangements to split the profits for classes that they promote and set up. That gives them a way to really increase their profit and they don’t mind so much when they make less on a class that you set up. Have you ever volunteered to donate your time at one of their events, giving tips and advice to their customers? Yes it is a whole day where you are getting paid nothing but think of the good will. That range gets to advertise that they have brought in a top notch instructor. People are impressed with the range, you draw in your students so the range gets new members, and maybe you do pick up a few students for future classes (which makes them more money).
Now if you have already thought of all of this, and you in fact are doing it, then thank you. You are indeed a good ambassador, and you are helping everyone including your fellow instructors that follow you to the doors of that range. If you are not, just think about it. Finally if you are doing all that and the range management still looks at you like you are trying to steal their lucky charms each time you talk to them, then it might be time to just move on. Some managers are never going to see the value in you or the students you bring to them. If that is the case then they can actually hurt your reputation.