image for post - FT 047: How to Leverage Your Technical Skills to Sell Corporate Training with Reuven Lerner

FT 047: How to Leverage Your Technical Skills to Sell Corporate Training with Reuven Lerner

As a freelancer, you are an expert in the technical skills of your field, skills that are in demand. Have you ever thought about training others? Reuven Lerner explains how to succeed in corporate training.

Reuven Lerner transitioned from programer and software developer to teacher and trainer after being asked by his clients to train their staff. Reuven has found training to be very rewarding because he loves teaching and interacting with people as well as having the freedom to learn new technology based on his curiousity. The pay isn't bad either and Reuven has broken the feast and famine cycle by being booked 10 months in advance for training sessions.

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Reuven shares with us:

  • Why he switched to training: Training is productized consulting. It is in demand and pays well. It also has a specific times when you have to be available for your clients, the training days, giving you the freedom to schedule your life how you want to the rest of the time.
  • What it takes to be a trainer: You have to know and love the topic. It also helps that you enjoy interacting with people and have the patience to explain the details necessary for your students to succeed. You also need to be a self-directed learner to stay on top of the ever changing technology.
  • Why companies pay for training instead of buying a book: As a trainer, you are giving the employees a head start by teaching them all the tricks and things not to do that took you years to learn. Students learn faster, more deeply, and can hit the ground running, easily making up the cost of training by quickly implementing what they learned to make the company more efficient.
  • How to convince companies to train with you: Become an authority on the topic and get your name out there. Reuven coaches other tech trainers, blogs and writes ebooks about specific problems and solutions in his field, speaks at conferences and webinars, and filters through hiring ads to find companies hiring people who need the technical skills that he can teach. For conferences, aim to speak at open source conferences that let you speak for free, not the corporate sponsored ones that are more interested in making money than understanding the technology.
  • How to price a training session: There are two main pricing structures: daily rates that may or may not include travel, or pricing on a per student per day basis. Keep in mind class size and how many people you can effectively teach at once. Companies sometimes offer a set training amount and you have to determine if your expenses are covered verses how much profit you can make. In any case, talk to the training manager of the company to find out.

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