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Thread: Becoming a Wilderness survival instructor

  1. #41
    Senior Member Thaddius Bickerton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sarge47 View Post
    I guess I'm not sure what you're trying to do here. You keep talking about wanting to "teach survival," but your experience is "camping." If it were me, and I've done this before, btw, I'd start as an adult leader in a local Boy Scout troop. You've got to become known in order to get the clients. You can also take "Search & Rescue" training and get involved there. Others on here have posted on the business end of things, I'm talking about what your actual plans are. There are some names out there that teach "survival." John "Lofty" Wiseman; Tom Brown; Cody Lundin; David Canterbury; Mykel Hawke; Les Stroud; Bear Grylls; Mors Korchanski; the list goes on and on. They all have several things in common, but the main thing is that the public knows who they are. They also have years of experience behind them. So you're 20 years old, you have plenty of time to get started. Make a list of everything that you need to do to achieve your goal. I recommend getting some material on "Goal setting" from a friend of mine by the name of Zig Ziglar. Prioritize your steps and list everything and everybody your going to need to get there. Then take the 1st step. You gotta start somewhere, right? Now's the time. Dreams become reality only if you work at them! Good luck!
    Dang sarge, I only ever got to attend one of zig's lectures, but that one plus a few of his books taught me a ton about convincing people to buy what I had to sell.

    I call him Zig, but to his Face it would be Mr. Ziggler, even though I am older than him, he has the bonifides for teaching his skills. And the track record to back it up.

    ****

    Business 101
    Accounting 101 and 102
    Marketing 101, marketing surveys, developing and writing a business plan
    Business writing
    A few teaching methods courses including developing sylibus' and lesson plans and goals and out comes.

    A lawyer to esablish business type
    An accountant to set up and keep your records, help you track profit and loss etc.

    A protfolio or web site or utubes showing things you have done.

    For example, how to sharpen a knife, start a fire without matches or a bic or firesteel make cordage, improvise stuff, collect wild edibles, field first aid, philisophy,

    Answer these questions:

    1. Who are my potential customers
    2. Who is currently offering them services similar to the ones I intend to offer them
    3. What is my unique selling proposition, I.E. What makes me special and worth their time and money
    4. Who can and will give testimonials that I am good at what I say I am.
    5. How often should I send out press releases, do pro bono lectures, volenteer, write and communicate to get my name out there as an "expert" in the field I teach
    6. How do I know if my students are learning, what do I do when I notice the DUH factor in their face /actions.
    7. What happens the first time something bad happens like a client drops dead of a heart attack? Can I do CPR, What are the legal ramifications of it.
    8. What tools will be required, what will the client provide and what will i provide? How do i evaluate the readiness / skills and knowledge of customers without making them upset and frustrated.
    9. Am I really a people person with teaching skills or someone who wants to spend time in the woods, would I be happier as a wrangler / outfitter helper / guide in another business owners employ.
    10 Instead of teaching, who can teach me, who teaches things I want to know or that I think I already know and can I attend their classes to see if they teach things that I already know how to do in an effective manner and can I observe how that impacts others and myself.

    The list is endless.

    As far as starting a business I have two things:

    1. SBU.gov is the small business administration web site and they offer a ton of publications that you need to get and read on starting up and managing a small business included are business plans (necessary to obtain loans and to understand your business and how it will operate) and even mentor / coaching in areas where you may be weak for example legal and accounting, often free help from volunteers giving back or paying forward.

    2. To make money one needs to find sufficient individuals with money that they are both able and willing to spend to obtain a product or service. One then needs to be able to provide that product and convince customers that you are the best choice of who is capable of providing it, and to do so in a manner that allows one to have more money than expenses at the completion of the transaction.

    Also you might find dale carnige's book "How to Win Friends and Influence People" to be a wonderful place to began to enhance your communication and people skills.
    Last edited by Thaddius Bickerton; 04-16-2012 at 01:31 AM.
    Thaddius Bickerton

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  2. #42
    Not a Mod finallyME's Avatar
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    I would suggest looking at other survival instructors that are successful and see what kind of background they have. Most have either college or military or both. Very few have neither. I would start there.
    I've taken a vow of poverty. To annoy me, send money.
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  3. #43
    Gadget Master oldsoldier's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sparky93 View Post
    Ditto to what Sarge said, great posts. I have some stuff I'd like to say, but I'm staying out of this one....
    Add me to the list of agreement. James, I'm 50 lived the lifestyle you describe from 3-4 years old until I joined the army at 17. During my 18 years in the army I went trhough every survival school they had at the time, spent somewhere around 18 months all together in such schools. As well as EMT/paramedic training, underwater rescue, specialized rescue, and other such training as well. Not to mention Ranger training, airborne school and such, I had the good fortune to be able to train with not only the navy seals, marine force recon and air commandos here state side during joint operations events but also with German specops, back in the 80's. After my active duty time I went back to the self sufficent lifestyle and still try to llive it the best I can under the circumstances now. I am also rather profecient in medicinal and edible herbology.

    Now that being said about my personel background and history, I do not consider myself in the league of folks here like Crash, PVG, Kyra, sarge, sourdough, and any of a dozen or so more here. I know I can survive in many situations I have done so, Maybe with another 20 years of experience I'll be at a level to be able to be a "survival instructor" Maybe not.

    My "non" expert opinion is listen to the people here while you think they are being patronizing they are really trying to offer you some good sound advice and answer your question in an honest manner. While I don't get around here as much as I used to or would like to, EVERY time I log on here and check what I've missed I learn something new.
    If by what I have learned over the years, allow me to help one person to start to prepare. If all the mistakes I have made, let me give one person the wisdom that allows them to save their life or the life of a loved one in an emergency. Then I will truly know that all the work I have done will have been worth every minute.

  4. #44

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    I would always joke about teachers. Those who can do, those who can't teach but in reality it takes a special person knowledgeable in their subject to be a good teacher. Probably the fastest way to learn more about a subject is to teach it to others.

  5. #45
    Administrator Rick's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Randy
    Probably the fastest way to learn more about a subject is to teach it to others.
    That may be the truest words ever written.

  6. #46
    Resident Wildman Wildthang's Avatar
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    Well none of us know it all, I guess that's why we are here! I think survival is like golf, you can learn a lot, and you can get pretty good, but nobody ever truly masters the game!

  7. #47
    Senior Member Thaddius Bickerton's Avatar
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    I read an old saying that experience teaches fully , but in the end finds it's lessons spent on a dead man. The advice offered here is trying to help you short cut some of that.

    If you want a outdoors life, consider working for someone already doing something you think you might like, perhaps a outfitter or hunting guide working for an established business is a way to get your foot in the door (or out of doors as the case may be.)

    Id rather aim you at church missionary work than the peace corps, if you go with the right church group then the chance to help and make a difference is much higher than trying to live within the political correct rules (cant go ticking off the local warlord etc ) of the peace corps.

    To be honest, the most knowledgeable people sharing survival are at most gonna have one or two fellows they are a mentor to. The "famous" ones either have day jobs or count on a lot of marketing hype and deliver only bits and irts of useful stuff.

    One other possibility would be a military career where over time if you work at it you might manage to get a job teaching sere or some such with them and at the same time build up a nice resume for the world, and also be able to save up some coin, and gain world experience and college etc. Just a thought, but do that on your own mind, as signing with uncle sugar means he owns your life and you could be put in harms way where you dont wanna be.

    Thad
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