Brig Sushil Bhasin | 7 ways trainers can mess up their business
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7 ways trainers can mess up their business

7 ways trainers can mess up their business

I have been a trainer for 46 years. In the first 34 years I was, if I may say, a Pure Trainer or a simple trainer. In the Army one just ‘trained’ with the only desire of being recognised and appreciated. There was no other motive. No promotion, incentive or any such thing. In the last 12 years I transited from a Pure Trainer to a “Trainer entrepreneur.” (Not that entrepreneurs are impure !!)

After almost a decade of training in the corporate domain, I realised how my quest to learn and focus on ‘knowledge’ and ‘delivery’ kept me away from the ‘business’ aspect of training. I had immense satisfaction, recognition and popularity but the balance sheet depicted a different story. I thought I did not measure my success well. I understood the conflict between ‘passion’ and ‘business.’

I am sharing my experience so that trainers who are getting into business or have been in this business can move towards success faster with lesser effort and investment of TEM (Time, effort and money)

1. Lack of FOCUS. One needs to know one’s niche and focus on it. The tendency of trying to do it all yourself prevents one from focusing upon the bigger picture and getting bogged down by micro management. One must learn to outsource and delegate. Never do something that you can get done in lesser time at an affordable price. Remember ROTI. Return on Time Invested.

2. Fear of selling. Many trainers (like me) are scared of selling. They feel it is not right. Asking for money or demanding your price is not good. They are neither able to identify their value nor demand their price.

3. Operating in Comfort Zone. Many of us are unwilling to make the effort of moving out of our comfort zones. If you do not have a vision, ignore the future trends, stick to your ways of doing things, chances are you will decay. The speed of change is faster than ever before. There is no option but to step out. And … run. Run faster (but steadily) than you ever did before.

4. Missing the trainer-marketer link. If you are the one thinks training and marketing are different, you are in for trouble. A trainer must be a marketing expert or outsource it (with a basic knowledge and understanding of it.) You ought to know and practice the best trends and effective ways of selling your product, its need and yourself as the right person to learn from. Otherwise you will be a guy winking at girls in a dark room. Get used to harnessing the power of social media which allows you visibility and gets you leads in least time with least investment of money.

5. Lack of Personal Branding. Who are you? What do you do? How do you position yourself? How will your customers benefit from your training? Do you ask and consider these questions. Does all your communication flow from this one ‘brand’ or do people view you as a confused person? Trainers will do well to invest in personal branding including personal grooming.

6. Being a one man Army. Nothing works better than collaboration. In the training industry, I feel this is a big ‘bug.’ Owning content. The myth that you own the content which you pick up from here and there, amalgamate, or tweak it and call it your own. Collaborate, delegate, outsource and share. You will be a big success, let me assure you.

7. Ignoring Business Skills. The majority of trainers I know have no idea how businesses are run nor do they see the need acquiring business skills. If I was to go back to 2004, I should have learned business skills before starting a business the ‘Army way.”

Amalgamation of training and business and thinking of both as one is the only way one can carve out training as a worthwhile career option. It is worth investing time, effort and money to acquire this skill that will, certainly, help you accelerate towards success

  • RM Saravanan
    Posted at 03:22h, 08 March Reply

    I don’t know you. But I can feel that the words originated from the heart, which has the purest intent to help others. Thank you for sharing.

    • sushilbhasin
      Posted at 13:48h, 08 March Reply

      Thanks. Yes the words are deeply embedded in my heart. My mission is to make #Supertrainers realise this. And i do it through my signature workshop #TTST (Train the Super Trainer)

  • Naresh Shivani
    Posted at 05:40h, 08 March Reply

    Yes. It is true what you hv said.

  • Priyanka Kumar
    Posted at 06:27h, 08 March Reply

    Really interesting read.
    Personal branding. Niche area. Marketing.
    Super stuff.

    • sushilbhasin
      Posted at 13:47h, 08 March Reply

      Yes Priyanka, Thats right. My #Super Trainer Programme focuses on this. My programme is a little different from the TTTs. We go deep into the “how” and the “why.” We touch the soft ware more than the hardware

  • Ajit Vidyadharan
    Posted at 07:24h, 08 March Reply

    Absolutely true Brig. Bhasin. Considering you are a businessman / woman & a Trainer can give you success in the training business. Else it will only give you satisfaction; which, without money, after a while seems useless.

    • sushilbhasin
      Posted at 13:42h, 08 March Reply

      Wonderful Ajit. Well said

  • Himanshi Awaal
    Posted at 07:49h, 08 March Reply

    Relevant points and easy to understand. This article works as a good guide.

    • sushilbhasin
      Posted at 13:42h, 08 March Reply

      Thanks Himanshi. As a student of #TTST, I would like you to be an effective part of the driving force. We need to bring in a paradigm shift in this mndset

  • Mahendra Thakur
    Posted at 07:55h, 08 March Reply

    Great insight Sir, you just nailed it. I guess this is why trainer also keep on looking for other Sources of income and always living a financial not so secure life.

    Thanks for sharing.

    • sushilbhasin
      Posted at 13:40h, 08 March Reply

      Dear Mahendra,
      As a student of #TTST you have seen how we are working on this together. We need to collaborate and stand up together and demand our value.
      Is asking for our worth a sin ??
      I am leaning on the TTST Alumni to contribute in building some customs, traditions and ethics in the Trainers Fraternity

  • Kulwant kataria
    Posted at 11:06h, 08 March Reply

    Very well narrated experience and very useful.Incidentally whatever you have written I have experienced and still experiencing. Started executing new approach and definitely I would incorporate your views in my new approach.

    • sushilbhasin
      Posted at 13:37h, 08 March Reply

      Dear Kulwant,
      In the last 12 years I felt almost all trainers go through it.
      Some quietly endure it.
      Its time we stand up and do something about it.
      Thats my mission now. Contribute to the trainers fraternity in many ways .. getting the market to respect trainers, facilitators etc is just one of the many things I aim at in my #TTST (Train the Super Trainers) programme

  • Mustafa Pervez
    Posted at 12:57h, 08 March Reply

    Excellent. We need centralized marketing. We also should feed each other as the doctors do. (But the doctors do it in an unethical way)

    • sushilbhasin
      Posted at 13:35h, 08 March Reply

      Dear Mustafa,
      I am really pained to see the trainers community not even realising their own value. They are prepared to be paid peanuts for their work.
      As an industry also, it sets unrealistic bench marks. We need to combat this collectively

  • Mariana
    Posted at 13:46h, 08 March Reply

    This is such an amazing article. These points are relevant and should be of prime focus.
    Sir I loved the way each point has been elaborated.

    A trainer as an entrepreneur should follow these points

    • sushilbhasin
      Posted at 15:47h, 08 March Reply

      Thanks Mariana,
      Yes. As a #Supertrainer, I am sure you know how we give importance to Entrepreneurship in #TTST. I feel every trainer must think like an entrepreneur

  • Sai Ramya
    Posted at 14:01h, 08 March Reply

    Very informative, it actual summarizes the attitude of trainer who is usually in the giving mindset … It’s an eye opener as well… #TTST is doing pretty good job in awareness…Trainer has to Don the hats off entrepreneur, leader etc…

    • sushilbhasin
      Posted at 15:49h, 08 March Reply

      Thats right Ramya

  • keerthana.l
    Posted at 14:01h, 08 March Reply

    Only when raindroplet hits the sunshine…there is a creation of rainbow!!!
    Yes,absolutely in the transition.period of becomng an rainbow…by hitting out from TTST…. just experience if you want to be SUPER SUPERRR SUPER.TRAINER

    • sushilbhasin
      Posted at 15:48h, 08 March Reply

      Thanks a lot Keerthana

  • Hridayesh chouhan
    Posted at 23:10h, 08 March Reply

    It’s true sir I was a good trainer but not a good enterpuner
    After learning lessons from ttst and you boot camp I identify my biggest mistakes and now daily correcting that mistakes and converting that in earnings g opportunity
    Do now believe that soon I will become a money producing machine too
    Hridayesh chouhan corporate trainer

    • sushilbhasin
      Posted at 08:31h, 09 March Reply

      Dear Hridayesh,
      After concentrating only on knowledge, content and passion I shifted my focus to business only last year.
      MMI opened my eyes further, where I learned to value my worth. I learned that asking for money is not sin and there is no need to keep giving it away for free. Even for charity there is a way. You earn and then give it in charity.
      I am happy we are waking up to this reality in life

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