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Make Good Money as a Scuba Instructor

Discussion in 'Basic Scuba Discussions' started by captdave, Oct 11, 2001.

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  1. The Chairman

    The Chairman Chairman of the Board

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Cave Country!
    56,210
    23,864
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    I have read all twelve pages of this thread with interest and not a small amount of bemusement. Having worked 15 years for a major automotive company, thirty years total in the automotive field and having very little to show for it, I started to work on my own a couple of years ago as a Network consultant. It HAS been an eye opener, but there are some great points being made here.

    1) We all agree (with our employer or clients) to trade our time for nickels. Make sure you get as many nickels as the traffic will bear. I now make a good deal more in only 20 hours a week as I did while working 60+ hour weeks. I truly believe that my clients get more than they pay for! No, I refuse to tell any one how I do it. You would lose all respect for me!

    2) Many people love the "all inclusive" package deals. Give it to them and you will be rewarded. Being rewarded is not a bad thing.

    3) Making money off of the rich gives me time and resources to give to the not so rich. I give a boatload of time and money to the Boy Scouts of America. I plan on starting a Venture crew this December after I finish my IDC. I do not plan on charging the kids, but I have many of my current clients who would LOVE for me to teach them SCUBA at an “exotic location”. Consequently, I will be “borrowing” from some of the concepts in this thread to make sure I provide a great service to my clients.

    4) Your actual attitude about your customers will endear you to them or drive them away. People can sense when you are truly genuine in your dealings with them. They will reward you with loyalty only if you are loyal to them first. Never, EVER compromise your client’s trust in you. Once gone, it is not easily restored. This includes condescension behind closed doors. Only a fool feels he can fool others successfully.

    5) Don’t lose the message in the messenger. Arrogant, abusive language will always detract from good ideas. The trick is to discern which ones are right for you (if any), and toss the rest. I have always been able to learn from my harshest critics. Sometimes there are salient messages hidden within their venom. Not all of us will see value in what any particular person has to say. It makes us neither right nor wrong… just different.

    6) Good ideas do not need to be proved to be good. That being said, it still takes only one cogent fact to destroy a great theory. Inherent logic and reasoning are sometimes good enough. A person need not justify his actions or beliefs to me. If they do, I see it as a bonus! Not every idea is beneficial, nor can all ideas be bogus. There are always gems in the matrix if you know how to look for them.

    This has been one of the “livelier” threads on the board. Yet, the Mod Squad has left it generally intact. Our goal is to not create a homogenous board where we all espouse the same opinions, but rather to provide an open forum that is free from verbal abuse. We got close to that line many times here, and possibly stepped over it once or twenty times. Still, the thrust of these posts were still anchored in an open discussion. That can only be healthy for our board.

    Sorry this post was sooooo long; I guess I am starting to sound like Iggy!

    :tease:
     
  2. tallyho

    tallyho Guest

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    Firstly Capt. Dave, may I congratulate you on posting some interesting information.
    However, I have been in the business for 9 years and in that time, I have yet to come across anyone who has got close to earning $100,000 from instructional work. This is a way to make half that and that's by one-one tuition - promoting your services to the professional clients who are looking for some personal teaching.
    If you look at the industry generally, the best way to make money is by running a complete outfit e.g. Dive Centre, Shop etc.
    The middle market is not the ways to earn big bucks unless you have an enormous amount of investment behind you and 99.9% of us are not in that position. I used to work at the biggest dive school in the UK teaching 100's of students each year and 'all' of them were on tight budgets; it's true that their first outlay of equipment can be expensive but we all rely on repeat business and that expenditure drops dramatically thereafter. Loyalty is the best form of advertising and revenue growth and that can only be achieved, in respectable figures, by offering your teaching services to those that can afford to spend two weeks in the Maldives - for example.
    The other issue is one of geographical location – the majority of instructors don’t have the luxury of exotic surroundings and therefore have to deal with far higher stress levels with beginners especially – teaching in 2m viz isn’t great but you will find your students being mentally stronger to the challenges our oceans throw at us. You’ll tend to find the age group of these intrepid clients tend to be a lot younger – hence learning to dive on a shoe string, whilst the customers with the ‘real’ money tend not to have the time for this sport e.g. Family commitments, Careers etc. The secret is persuading this latter lucrative market that their one-one tuition will be far more beneficial for them.
    On a different note, David Attenborough (Naturalist narrator) is showing an excellent series on British Television titled – ‘The Blue Planet’ and it’s without doubt the most comprehensive underwater filming documentary I’ve seen to date. http://www.bbc.co.uk/cgi-bin/survey/form.cgi?/nature/blueplanet/
    Enjoy your diving guys!!
     
  3. The Chairman

    The Chairman Chairman of the Board

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Cave Country!
    56,210
    23,864
    113
    Welcome to the board Tally Ho! You have come to the finest board, SCUBA or otherwise on the net. I hope you meet as many great friends and learn as much here as I have. You picked one of the most contentious threads to begin posting in... most are a bit more fun!

    :tease:
     
  4. tallyho

    tallyho Guest

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    Thank you.
    It’s nice to read and respond to an intellectual and stimulating forum- it makes a change to the usual single syllable rubbish that’s floating around at the moment.
     
  5. Butch103

    Butch103 Instructor, Scuba

    # of Dives:
    Location: Southeast Ontario (Marmora)
    1,470
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    please accept my apologies if you felt I slighted in you any way. It was about ime someone said in laymans terms what CD had been trying for the past 12-13 pages.

    NetDoc..................I am glad that someone else sees that there is some merit (and I repeat some) merit in CD's comments. There are/is a segment of the population out there that would be ideal for his plan (in general).

    Again, I personally don't agree with all of CD's sentiments, but I can see where in some cases his theories may carry some weight.

    Butch :peace:
     
  6. DivingGal

    DivingGal Divemaster

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    On behalf of other DM's thanks Tom.
     
  7. fredk

    fredk Nassau Grouper

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    IF IN FACT YOU CAN MAKE SUCH HUGE DOLLARS TEACHING SCUBA WHY ARE THERE SO MANY POOR INSTRUCTORS AND DIVE SHOP OWNERS? GET IN THE REAL WORLD
     
  8. Deepy

    Deepy Guest

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    In most of the countries the teacher are not very well paid. If you like diving and like the people you do not want to make a good money, you want to work and teach well. If you are a good teacher you are not necceserily a good business man. For example: a good teacher wants the best gear for his students and not the gear from a special shop. New methods are in the focus of his interests and not the next marketing campaigne... To teach or to run a shop or to organise trips are very different tasks. So I prefer an instructor, who wants to teach and if he gives me advices about gear and trips, he will not earn on it...
     
  9. fredk

    fredk Nassau Grouper

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    YOUR RIGHT ABOUT THAT, IF MORE PEOPLE APROACHED THE INDUSTRY WITH THEIR LOVE OF THE SPORT INSTEAD OF THEIR GREED TO MAKE BIG BUCKS OFF EVERY PERSON THEY TEACH OR SELL TO IT WOULD BENEFIT THE SPORT AND EVERYBODY COMES OUT A WINNER
     
  10. The Chairman

    The Chairman Chairman of the Board

    # of Dives: I just don't log dives
    Location: Cave Country!
    56,210
    23,864
    113
    Hey Fred and all,

    While I deeply (pun intended) love the sport of diving, I also have to support kids, get ready for retirement (I want to live like Joe), and also be able to buy the dive equipment I want. Love is not neccesarily the best motivator. Being an emotion, it tends to wax and wane. I would rather be more consistent in my approach to diving.

    As I pointed out, I was in the automotive industry for thirty years. For most of that time, I was either an automotive technician or a service manager. Most thought I love working on cars as I was quite good. Actually, I hated it, and now that I am out of the field choose to have my work done at my old shop. I have more tools than any two of my old techs, and I think my distaste for working on cars is what made me so efficient. I could not stand to be in the same car for very long!

    What other motivations might there be for a Dive Instructor??? I am not sure, but money could easily be one. The issue is that regardless of the motivation, ALL Dive Instructors have the same responisbility. Thats to teach in such a manner to keep your students safe now, under your care, and when they leave your tutelage. Anything less is incompetence.
     
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