I qualified as an ADI in 2004 and, in 2005 became a full time instructor.
Having recently moved into a totally strange area I decided to join a large national franchise, which I did for 3 years, until I had established a fairly steady flow of referrals. It was at this time I decided I knew where most of the cul-de-sacs in the area were (I had unwittingly investigated most of them!) and it was time to leave the franchise and become more independent. I joined with a friend and colleague who had just left the same national franchise to start a small group of her own.
As an instructor I did not always have complete job satisfaction, I felt something was missing. I wanted to let pupils develop their own uniqueness as drivers and not just churn out the same clones that I believed the DSA wanted. MS-PSL became a nightmare instead of something I could do in my sleep!!
I think it was about 4 years ago (I stand to be corrected on that) my colleague, friend and mentor mentioned the fact that she was interested in doing a new course on the market, BTEC level 4 with the Tri-Coaching Partnership. She asked if I would like to join her, and so, one morning we left home, headed toward Coventry to begin an adventure which has altered my life.
The first day of the course was like a whirlwind, information coming at me right, left and centre. It was a day on communication and, at the end of the day, I realised that I had been ‘talking’ to my pupils but NOT communicating, this was the start of what I had been missing!!
There were three other classroom days spread throughout the year. Each of the four days had assignments to be completed, which I must admit I found tough to begin with, it was a long time since I had been in education.
As the time went by instead of telling my ‘pupils’ how to drive, I allowed them to drive and then tell me whether it felt right or wrong, good or bad, scary or comfortable. All these things allowed my ‘clients’ to develop their own personality in their driving, and, by communication and allowing them to think for themselves, they became a part of the process of learning to drive.
Having completed the BTEC 4 opportunities have opened up for me in other ways. My clients look forward to, and enjoy their sessions as they have control over their own learning. The prices that I am able to charge has increased and I can command some of the highest rates in my area. I have never been busier! It has an impact on my personal life, with higher rates can come, if you so desire, shorter hours. My diary can be almost fully booked up to three months in advance, plus a waiting list! I have become an aCCeLerate trainer for the BTEC Level 3 course in Coaching for Driver Development. Also the BTEC qualification allows me to deliver BTEC Level 2 courses in Driving.
There are more and more avenues into which I am looking.
There is no doubt in my mind that without the BTEC 4, my missing link, I would not have had the courage or confidence to do much of what I am now involved in. I do not always get things right, but I have learnt to reflect and look for alternatives, to learn what my mistake was and how to find a solution.
I am sure that without BTEC 4 I would still be saying, “Clutch down, into gear 1, set the gas…………….etc,etc”. Instead it is now, “How are you going to understand this best? Would you like to give it a go? How did that feel? What do you think, if anything you need to change? Would you like to try that again?”
Thank you BTEC 4