Luke Bong
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3 Myths About Becoming a Corporate Trainer

For every corporate trainer that is actively conducting training today, there are probably hundreds who have abandoned their dream of doing something that could impact people's lives positively. You don't have to be one of them. I'm here to tell you this - Don't believe in the following 3 myths that have robbed many aspiring trainers of their dreams.

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Myth #1 - You must be an expert or a guru

This myth has been around for ages. It is probably caused by people's feeling of insecurity and self-esteem issues. Basically, this myth tells you that you must be an acknowledged expert before you can start conducting any training sessions.

So, unless you have a degree or your wall is adorned with countless professional qualifications, nobody will bother listening to you. Hence, you might as well just give it up.

Truth #1 - You know more than you give yourself credit for

Every year, there are people entering and leaving the job market. What that means to you is that there will always be people who are inexperienced who can benefit from what you already know.

Think about it this way. How difficult is it to tie your own shoe laces? You could probably do it with your eyes closed, right? But what if you ask a 4-year-old kid to do it? That's probably going to be extremely challenging for her.

Even though tying shoe laces hardly qualify as a complex set of skills, to the 4-year-old, you are expert. 

That's why I tell you that you already know more than you probably give yourself credit for. And the best part is you can launch your training career by simply teaching the newbies your existing experience.

There will be plenty of time for you to upgrade your expertise and build your credentials once you have become a professional corporate trainer. Trust me - I was once stuck in this myth, too.

Myth #2 - Only excellent public speakers will succeed

When people find out that I'm a professional trainer, the first thing they usually comment is 'how they wish they could have the ability to speak in public'. It's as if public speaking is the only thing that a trainer does.

That, by the way, could not be further from the truth. While as a trainer, you are certainly required to speak in front of an audience. So, being interesting certainly helps. But, what if I tell you each year, there are many entertaining and skillful speakers who go out of business?

You see, excellent public speaking skills is just a facet of what corporate trainers do. So, what then plays a greater role in a corporate trainer's success?

Truth #2 - It's the excellent marketers who will succeed

Business 101 - A successful business must generate a steady stream of income. This means that if you are not engaged to conduct training by a client, you earn nothing.

One of the most important lessons I've learned when I started off was you get a training gig not by speaking first, but by marketing first. Only after you have marketed yourself and got the gig that you can start to showcase your public speaking prowess.

So, while I totally agree that public speaking skills are definitely important to a trainer's success, I am urging you not to become too caught up with it to the point where you are neglecting your marketing efforts.

Myth #3 - Trainers become rich 'celebrities' in their field

I'll be the first to admit. In 2004, after attending Anthony Robbins' Unleash the Power Within seminar in Singapore together with my wife, one of the takeaways for me was I want to grow up to become Tony Robbins.

That formed my impression of what a trainer is - a stadium filled with 4000 screaming fans, a helicopter waiting to fetch Tony at the helipad - basically Tony was a rock star. Don't you want to be a rock star, too?

Well, thinking that way actually caused me to burn out fairly early in my journey as a trainer. I remember complaining to a close friend one day about how unappreciated I felt as a trainer. Where were the screaming fans? Where was the helicopter?

That was when I discovered that I was on the wrong path as a trainer. I was slowly entering the dark side. But thank God, I went back to the Force 🙂

Truth #3 - Trainers must stay true to their mission

Why do you want to become a trainer?

From my own experience, as well as discussion with other successful trainers, I've come to conclude that a trainer has a strong sense of mission to serve and help humanity.

Whenever a trainer wanders off course and starts to chase the bling bling, he or she is heading towards failure. Before long, the trainer will start to lose the passion to help people. And the irony is that was what makes him or her so valuable in the first place.

Simply put, a trainer without the passion to help others is as good as a dail-up modem in a broadband world. So, stay true to your mission and guard your heart.

In short...

If you want to become a corporate trainer, you owe it to yourself to realise it. There is no point waiting for the stars to all be in place - it just won't happen. Instead, heed the advice of the late Zig Zigglar, who said,

You don't have to be great to start, but you have to start to be great.

What are your views on this issue? Please leave them in the comment below.

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