Thursday, 28 December 2017

Superdrive Academy

In this Blog I just want to show you the diversity there is amongst driving instructors. I recently met the owner of Superdrive Academy which is one of the driving schools in Andover, Hampshire.

Sam asked me to revamp her website for her so my initial thing to do is to contact the customer and arrange a meeting. This is a necessary step as I find it best to try and meet up with the owner of the driving school so I can hopefully get a vibe for their business and what their about. Before I travelled to meet Sam, I first researched to see how many driving instructors in Andover there was. I was surprised to see so many.

So I travelled to Andover to meet up with them and we met up for a coffee in the town centre. I asked them to tell me a few things about themselves and why they had chosen to be a driving instructor. During our conversation, it was clear to see that they where very enthusiastic and driven by two things, one was road safety and the other was running a business. After listening to them for a short while, it became clear that they where a business first and foremost and wanted to succeed in this area of business.

I also discovered that they had now taken on a new ADI and in the short amount of time they'd been in business, they had already expanded. This now means that they can offer twice as many driving lesson in Andover and receive a good healthy profit from just having one instructor extra out on the roads working for them.

What was very impressive was that they are diversifying into different markets and that is their clients generally come from different ethnic origins too. This means that they can cater for Urdu, Punjabi and Gujrati speaking clients as they now have a driving instructor in Andover on their franchisee who can also speak these languages. I asked them if this was a niche in their market and they sort of agreed that it is in their local area as there aren't any driving instructors that can cater for these languages.

I explained to them that this is great providing that there is enough demand in their community and there are lots of clients who prefer using their own language - as an after thought, I thought that this was a stupid sweeping statement by me.

Superdrive Academy wanted to be known as one of the best  instructors in Andover and they where only currently offering driving lessons to females. I asked them why this was and pointed out to them that they where limiting themselves and that if they wanted to expand then they would have to market themselves for both male and female pupils.

We chewed over the fat on this and in the end I managed to persuade them to change their offering to also cater for both male and female. By doing this meant that they wasn't restricting their growth rate. So, if they wanted to expand their staff even further by taking on extra driving instructors then they could do this sooner rather than later.

Superdrive Academy already have a website so we got down to talking business and discussing what their requirements where and what their end goal was. We discussed lot of things such as their design, brand, look and feel, exposure on social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

We had to reevaluate their pricing structure, not just for normal driving lessons but also for offering discounts for any block bookings they wanted and any student discounts and those sort of things. Superdrive Academy didn't want to be one of those driving instructors in Andover who offer cheap driving lessons near me gang. Instead, they wanted to be very competitive and also be the leader in price in a few years to come.

After a few hours I had all the information I needed and it was time now to get back to the office and start making a strategy for Superdrive Academy in Andover so we both went through deadlines and made a plan going forward. I told them that I would touch base with them in one week's time to finalise the strategy and go through the design principles, if this could be signed off we could then move onto step 2 which will be to get the layout of her brand updated, create artwork and the layout for her website.

Saturday, 16 December 2017

Driving Instructors In Bangor - Evolved

Earlier this year I travelled to Rhyl in North Wales and met up with a friend called Alan. Now Alan had just set himself up in business in his local town as a driving instructor. He didn't go down the mainstream root of offering manual driving lessons, he decided to teach in automatics. I touched base with Alan last week and he's now asked me to help him expand as he wants to be amongst the driving schools and driving instructors in Bangor as he feels that from a business point of view that there is also a market that he could enter.

Unless you've read my previous Blog on Alan and Evolved Driving School, you probably won't know that Evolved Automatic Driving School is only approximately 8 months old. What's impressive about this is that on an average, it takes approximately 3 to 4 years before a driving school starts to expand, there are various reasons for this for which I'm going to mention a few.

If you're like Alan, with lots of enthusiasm and taking his business model where now he's going to be competing amongst the other driving schools in Bangor then this does take a lot of commitment and sometimes even a little bit of luck. First of all, if you don't know the area that you're going to branch out to, then a little bit of research first needs to be done about that area.

Such as, how many driving schools are in that area, what prices are people paying for driving lessons in Bangor, what's the cheapest driving lessons in Bangor, what's the most expensive? These are just the basic questions any driving instructor should contemplate even before making any commitment into expanding.

Where's the nearest test centre, what's the population in Bangor? I could go on and on but I'm going to write a separate Blog on how to expand into different towns and cities in a separate Blog in the New Year.

One thing why I think Alan and Evolved Automatic Driving School will be successful, not just as a driving school in Llandudno or offering driving lessons in Llandudno, but by him expanding out to a different town already, he sort of has a niche market and a choice of specific customers to choose from. As far as both Alan and myself are aware, there is no one offering automatic driving lessons in Bangor yet?

So, for this reason Alan has started to capitalise on this point. There is no doubt that Alan will be successful with expanding his driving school as with the current climate, the demand is too large for the supply. There just aren't enough driving instructors out there yet. Unlike back in the 80s and 90's, there where far too many driving instructors and not enough work. It seems that the economy has shifted over the last 10 years or so and driving instructors just can't keep up with the demand.

Watch out for my next Blog in the New Year where I'll be discussing how to grow your driving school.

Friday, 15 December 2017

Shaun's Driving School

Welcome to Shaun's Driving School's Blog Spot.

Shaun's Driving School is one of the local independent driving instructors in Andover and has been established as one of the best driving schools in Andover for many years. Recently, Shaun's has been re-branded and has expanded. He is now known as Superdrive Academy

When you're looking for a driving instructor Shaun advises you to ask some of these basic questions:
  • What are your prices?
  • What is your pass rate?
  • Where can I take my driving test?
  • Where can I read some testimonials about you?
By asking any driving school these questions will give you a good idea whether or not you think that particular driving school is for you. Obviously you may have your own questions too but these are good questions to get you started.

Learning to drive can be quite a daunting experience for some, especially when you first start so sometimes it can be a good idea to choose a driving instructor that has been recommended to you by a friend or a member of the family. Most of Shaun's business comes from referrals and recommendations and very rarely feels the need to advertise.

As time has gone on, the driving test has been changed various times. This is to keep up to date with the ever increasing traffic and road systems. It's not just the theory test that has changed over the years but the practical driving test has also had to change too.

It has only been recently that their has been new changes introduced to the practical driving test. These changes include the removal of the turn in the road exercise and also the reversing round a corner exercise. These have been replaced with a pulling up on the right hand side of the road and reversing back for two car lengths. The DVSA have introduced this particular exercise as a study revealed that this was now a common thing to do, especially where parking has limited space on the left and their are spaces on the right.

The other changes to the driving test is the introduction to the forward bay park. Again the DVSA have recognised that this is common practice to drive forwards into a parking space and then reverse out. I suppose you've only got to have a look in some of the supermarket car parks to see examples of this.

I've seen this practiced many times before when pupils have been taking their driving lessons in Andover, I suppose we can look at the logical side of things and assume that just because it wasn't on the driving test back then there's no reason why we can't teach it - After all, it's common practice to do this type of manoeuvre when you go shopping.

In regards to learning to drive - the most common question we get asked as driving instructors is "how long will it take me to pass my driving test"? Of course, we are not mind readers and every pupil is different. If we was to go by the published figures by the DVSA, the average person will take approximately 45 hours coupled with 10 hours or so having private practice with friends or family.

Friday, 8 December 2017

Driving Lessons in Worksop

Worksop Driving School

So today was the launch of a new driving schools in Worksop called, wait for it.... Worksop Driving School. Andrew Buckler is the proud owner of his very own business and can now offer driving lessons in Worksop which is his home town.

Andrew contacted Get Your Own Driving School informing us that he wanted to leave his current franchise which was with LDC. So, we contacted Andrew and spent just over an hour on the phone with him discussing his needs.

At the end of the phone call we had managed to get a good idea and the scope of what Andrew wanted to achieve and when. It cam as no surprise that one of the reasons he wanted to leave was down to the franchise fee he was currently paying with his current franchisor.

We also got the impression that Andrew wanted to be in more control of his own destiny and drum up his own business. His concern with LDC was that he was getting enough supply of pupils through to him. I must say, 8 out of 10 people that contact us who want to go independent generally tell us that these are the main problems with their situation and going independent seems an attractive choice for them as they can work less hours but earn more money.

We had done some research and looked to see how many driving instructors in Worksop there where and we we're surprised to see that there was quite a few. So, we knew from a marketing point of view that we had our work cut out for us if we where to get Andrew's new business listed high within Google

We first set about designing Andrew his branding for his driving school, this included creating a logo for him, a colour scheme, the correct font and a basic style guide coupled with good imagery. When we showed Andrew our storyboard of his new business he was jumping with joy and so excited.

We then started creating some relationships for him with online directories, this is so we could gain him some Google juice and make a start on getting his website published. We also helped him set up his Facebook business page too and used the same sort of branding that we had used for his website.

Andrew gave us a tough deadline. He was in such a hurry to end his franchise with LDC that he asked us if we could help him to launch his business 4 weeks from the date he originally contacted us. This didn't give us much scope for error and it meant a lot or early mornings and late evenings but this is what we do to please our customers. We always go that extra mile and without any questions asked.

Anyway, we are now very happy to say that Andrew has now got himself his very own driving school
and already has a waiting list - business is very buoyant at the moment for driving instructors it seems.

If you're thinking of setting up your own driving school and want business support then please don't hesitate to contact us at

Monday, 16 October 2017

Driving Schools in Rochester with a new ADI gone independent

DCJ Driver Training - Driving Lessons in Rochester

Well Amanda Foley eventually took the plunge - Amanda had been thinking about going independent for a while. One of her dreams was to set up her own driving school business in Rochester and break away from the franchise she was in. So, one day, we got an email. Yep, it was Amanda.

Amanda expressed to us here at Get Your Own Driving School that her ambition was to have her own successful driving school and move off the franchise she was in. We spent about an hour on the phone asking the usual questions about branding, website, search engine optimisation (SEO), cars, resources and tools she needs, accounting and a few other bits and bobs.

We quickly assed her competition and looked at what driving instructors in Rochester there where and analysed her competition. We looked at prices, courses such as intensives and pass plus, hours they work, any price discounts, areas of work such as neighbouring towns, we gave it a thorough going over. In our analysis stage, we realised that Amanda was going to be one of the few female driving instructors in Rochester and Medway so we planned to use this to her advantage. You see, there are certain people who much prefer a female instructor, I'm not too sure why, maybe it's because they feel that a female instructor is more sympathetic. To be honest, all driving instructors are sympathetic, well apart from me that is - Jokes.

This was our first customer in Rochester and our analysis told us that the market was pretty densely populated with driving schools so we knew that our job wasn't going to be an easy one. I knew that if we were going to get Amanda some business and rank her driving school high on Google then we where in for a long slog.

Amanda wanted to call herself DCJ Driver Training so we immediately went away and registered her domain name. We also carried out searches and found that she was the only one with this name for a driving school in Rochester, well, in the whole of the United Kingdom really. Both Amanda and ourselves came up with a concept and a few ideas about what courses she could offer and at what prices. Amanda does favour intensive driving courses so she wanted this to be a part of the offerings and choices DCJ Driver Training.

We also gave her some of our experience within the driving instructor industry and advised her to also offer courses such as confidence building courses, pass plus courses and advanced driver training courses. Amanda took all of this on board and within the space of two weeks we were ready to launch her new business. Amanda was as happy as anything that everything had gone smooth and within the timescales she wanted to work to. It wasn't too long before DCJ Driver Training took it's first booking for an intensive driving course in Rochester

We are still working with Amanda and helping her to grow her business. She's also dropped a rumour to us that she's interested in expanding her driving school and wants to start training up PDI's. Knowing Amanda, this is not just a rumour - Watch this space. 

Sunday, 15 October 2017

Get Your Own Driving School

Get Your Own Driving School

Have you ever wanted your own driving school? Maybe you're thinking of becoming a driving instructor but not too sure on how to go about it. Or perhaps, you're already a driving instructor and working as a franchisee under the umbrella of one of the big national driving schools such as Red.

Shaun's Driving School in Andover has created an alternative way of supporting driving instructors who want the backing and support of a big national school but without the costs that go with this. As an example, if you are already a fully qualified driving instructor and are with one of the big national driving schools as a franchisee, then your franchise fee could be almost reaching approximately £210 per week or there or there about.

If you are training to become a driving instructor with one of the nationals, then you still have to pay them a franchise fee and again this can edge towards £180 per week. Obviously it depends on whether or not you are using their car as your teaching tool. If you use your own car then the prices will be slightly cheaper. One of the main things you've got to think about is how much money will you have left over as a salary each week. Don't forget, you've still got to pay for your own petrol, national insurance and tax.

So, after thinking long and hard about this, I came up with a business model whereby anyone who wanted to either train to become a driving instructor or who is already a driving instructor could use my business model and still earn a decent salary too. I was thinking for some time about what to call my new venture, choosing a new business name can be a slog if you think too long and hard about it. So, I just kept the business name simple and decided to call it "Get Your Own Driving School". After all, it does exactly what it says on the tin.

Get Your Own Driving School is ideal for a few different types of audiences, those who want to train to become a driving instructor, those who have recently qualified to become a driving instructor or those who are already with a driving school on a franchise scheme but would like to break away and start their very own business.

Over the next series of Blogs I'm going to write a few case studies using my own customers on how we worked together to set them up with their very own driving school. Before I write my first case study, maybe first head over to my main site where you can find lots more about Get Your Own Driving School

360 Driver Training

360 Driver Training is one of the local driving schools in Hemel Hempstead. Piers, who is the owner operator at 360 Driver Training in Hemel Hempstead didn't' train with us, He had already passed the three grueling exams needed to become a driving instructor.

We initially got an email from Piers where he was just making an initial inquiry about what we do and how we go about it. From this initial email, we set up a meeting together. This was so I could listen to what Piers wanted and his vision. After spending just over an hour with Piers, it soon became clear that he was very ambitious and had a great vision of which direction he wanted to go in. Not only did Piers talk about setting up his own driving school but he told us his ideas of perhaps expanding at a later date and bringing in more instructors to work for him.

Now, it's our belief that if you want your business to expand, then having a business with your personal name doesn't always cut it. Peirs already knew this and agreed with us on this point. With his ideas of expanding at a later date, coupled with wanting to offer other driver related services such as fleet work, he wanted to show people that he could offer a variety of courses. After some discussion, the name 360 Driver Training was born.

The logo we used was again pretty obvious, a which a steering wheel. We then set out to do his branding and worked out how we can use the steering wheel logo on all stationary items such as business cards, roof top box, pupil's progress record cards, website and on all social media such as Facebook and Twitter.

Our second meeting with Piers revolved around having a discussion about his pricing structure for driving lessons and his route to market. Piers wanted exposure from a few different channels such as Facebook, Twitter and Google+

After a few weeks, our designs where complete and we we're already to launch. We had built him a website, registered his domain name, got him a business email address, registered his business with Google My Business, all stationary was complete and delivered including his roof top box.

Piers was a bit nervous about entering the driving school market in Hemel Hempstead as being a bit of a newbie he wasn't sure what the reaction was going to be like. Now, as a rule, most driving instructors are very friendly, as I'm sure most are around the country and everyone congratulated Piers on his business launch and everybody reassured Piers and offered their advice should he need it.

Piers knew that part of our support package is to give him the support, advice and assistants whenever he needs it. We have over 25 years experience in the driving instructor industry and are experts in the online and digital marketing arena.

I'm fast forwarding 7 months down the line now and I'm pleased to say that Piers is now very much established as a driving instructor in Hemel Hempstead now and loving his career. He has gained a brilliant reputation amongst his pupils and other driving schools alike.

We are proud to say that we support Piers and 360 Driver Training in every aspect of running a business and Piers is now looking to bring his dreams forward and expanding his driving school by adding new instructors.

Sunday, 2 April 2017

Teaching in an electric car

This post is about the experience of an ADI who has recently bought an electric car to teach in. It makes a very interesting read and certainly makes you think about choosing an alternative to petrol or diesel. I have to give Rob Cooling full credit for this post. I'd also like to say thank you to Rob Gould from Rob Gould Driver Training in Romford.

For anyone interested this is a brief update on my experiences teaching in an electric car (Nissan Leaf). It's been a great success and I'm looking forward to the day when I can sell my manual and spend my entire working week in the automatic (my deadline for this is October).

It's so much easier, it makes me wonder why we make driving any harder than it needs to be - the idea that 'proper' driving is only a manual seems increasingly silly to me. Driving is about what happens outside the windscreen - the ability to understand the complex movement of traffic at varying and increasingly confusing scenarios. The more of the drivers 'processing power' that can be devoted to that the better. I've been stunned by the difference it makes to pupils when they switch to the automatic, the improvement on their overall driving is sometimes quite dramatic (they have so much better awareness, planning and anticipation). The less there is to think about inside the car the better, it's much more important to have that attention on the outside world.

Expectedly some of my current pupils who really should have been in an automatic from the start switched to the electric with very positive results. Rather unexpectedly a few of my other manual pupils have opted to switch to the automatic following a trial lesson (1 x Aspergers, 1 x autism, 1 x dyspraxia) and a couple of others are contemplating doing the same - automatics are so widely available nowadays that the restriction to an automatic licence isn't much of an issue. My wife has a manual licence, but chooses to only drive automatic. I will never return to driving manual myself. In my desperation to clear all my manual pupils I'm working overtime to get them all through the test so I can properly fill my diary with only automatic pupils.

Interestingly I have noticed a slight pattern regarding pupils who really wanted to learn in the automatic (electric) but were told by the person paying the money (parent/partner) they want them to learn manual, I think we have a generational thing going on at the moment which should change over the next decade. I think there's a lot more pupils out there that would choose automatic if it wasn't for someone else making the choice for them (for good reasons, there are more manual cars out there).
Demand for automatic (and the electric car) has been staggering. I've barely sorted out the promotion for it and without exaggerating I'm getting 2-6 requests a day, I can't take any of the work on as I'm fully booked and have pupils queueing on the waiting list. I'm only taking on pupils onto my waiting list who have learning difficulties / special needs as this is where my passion lies.

The electric car is smooth, quiet and comfortable. It's fantastic and the range has so far presented no issues (nor do I believe it ever will do for me due to the way my work pattern is setup). I do 3 x 2 hour lessons in a day and never seem to exceed 100 miles, plus I have a large gap between my 2nd and 3rd lesson allowing 3 hours to fully recharge. In a couple of years I'll upgrade to the 2018 Leaf which is supposed to be capable of 200+ miles on a single charge. My current Leaf will do 95 miles on a single charge (although I wouldn't feel comfortable allowing it to get lower than 15 miles without recharging). My range anxiety fears have ebbed away.

I've been tracking the costs and it seems to be about £2 per 100 miles, which for me equates to about 70p per 2 hour lesson. I'm not using a cheap energy supplier either, this is based on using Ecotricity who I think are brilliant (not cheap). It's worth pointing out they gave me a £40 discount off my yearly bill because I own an electric car and I get free access (52 charges per year) to their rapid charge network.

Another unexpected bonus in the Leaf is that I no longer have pupils struggling to release the parking brake, as it's foot operated it seems to be easier - I was wary at first but now quite happy.
Downsides? I've temporarily put Pass Plus on hold as it's a 230 mile trek which would be tight (not impossible) in the electric car. I'll need to sit down and do some planning, I think I can make it work with a few tweaks. The only other nuisance is the Leaf squeals when braking while reversing, from my research this seems to be a common problem. Having said that I think it's improving, it's just annoying having a beautifully quiet electric car when then squeals when you brake during reversing! If it doesn't stop I'm going to take it to Nissan and see if anything can be done.

I never hide the fact the I don't like driving (which is pretty weird given my job). I emphasise I hugely enjoy TEACHING not driving. But suddenly I want to drive, the fascination with the technology involved in electric cars and the potential environmental benefits mean a lot to me. For the first time I'm actually really enjoying driving.

Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Standards Check - Client Centred versus Coaching

Choose your approach.

When do I use Client Centred Learning, when do I coach and when do I instruct?

Being a driving instructor can be difficult at times knowing when to either instruct, coach or use client centred learning? Often there’s a lot of controversy surrounding this subject. Sometimes we have to be flexible and have all three of these teaching techniques in our armoury, but I suppose the key aspect is knowing when to use them? We discussed all of this with a driving instructor from Superdrive Academy in Andover, Hampshire, Uk.
What is important, is that when teaching we try to make it client centred as possible i.e. we are putting the learner at the centre of the learning process. The DVSA made a statement saying that it’s not all about coaching, it’s about client centred learning. They have also said that instruction based around the old Part 3 core competencies is still pretty good so this should not be thrown away.
The DVSA have increased the number of options available to us so that the learner can learn in an active way. So, this means that we may have to use a combination of teaching techniques.
Coaching is a powerful tool when used correctly but it is not a replacement of your existing techniques, it’s just an add-on. The principle that underpins coaching is that an engaged pupil is likely to achieve a higher level of understanding and that self-directed solutions will seem far more relevant.
Direct instruction is useful in the early stages of the learning to help the pupil cope with new situations or supporting a pupil who is clearly struggling in a certain situation. It’s often said that a good instructor will use the correct technique at the correct time and therefore matching the pupil’s needs.
If I do use direct instruction, then I usually try to encourage the pupil to analyse what the problem was and see if they can take responsibility for learning from it, therefore reinforcing learning?

Client Centred Learning.... generally requires the ADI to fully understand the pupil’s needs and to act in the best interests of the learner and not just what the ADI wants to do. Therefore, you’ve got to know what the pupil’s needs are. This information can normally be found by clever use of Q&A and both the ADI and pupil are having a conversation about appropriate goals for the lesson. Your goals may have been discussed on the previous lesson, if so, then ensure that you ask your pupil if the goals are still the same as previous set

So let’s say your pupil wants to improve on T-Junctions, then you can ask them what bits would they like to improve about the T-Junctions. You could ask them where would you like to practise the lesson. You could ask your pupil if they would like a full briefing again? You would ask them if they wanted to see any diagrams again? You would ask them what level of support do they want from you i.e. a full talk through to begin with or prompted or maybe they want to have a go themselves. By asking similar questions you are being client centred.
You may find that your pupil wants a full briefing followed by full talk-through practise, this is fine as it’s still client centred.

Instruction.... is usually described as "guided practice". The instructor tells the learner what to do and the learner carries out the actions. This is fine, but good instruction goes a little further than that. If I give guided instruction then I will tell the pupil why I'm telling them to do it this way and I would perhaps tell them what the consequences are if doing things a different way. So for example, I may tell my pupil who is approaching a T-junction to bring their speed down to 10 mph at least 4 car lengths before the junction because I want you to stop smoothly at the give way markings. If my pupil is hesitant let's say and not making progress on a national speed limit road and it's safe to get to the speed limit, then I would probably instruct the pupil to be at 60mph before they reach the second telegraph pole and tell them the reason why.

I always try to ensure that my pupil knows what action to take and why to take that action and how it is relevant to everyday driving.

Coaching.... There are different various definitions of coaching but in one way or another they all refer to "self-empowerment". The self meaning your pupil.  As an example, it's unlocking your pupils potential to maximise their learning and own performance. It is helping them to learn rather than teaching them.

Because there are many different coaching models, I'm going to write a whole article in my next letter to you which closely looks at coaching models and the benefits of coaching versus traditional methods. Please look out for my next article in a few weeks time.

Kind regards

Thursday, 16 February 2017

How to Parallel Park by Shaun's Driving School Andover

Parallel Parking

One of the four manoeuvres that you will need to learn for your Driving Test is the Parallel Park exercise or sometimes known as the reverse parking exercise. Here you will see Superdrive Academy videos showing reversing exercises for the driving test too.

Now there are many ways of teaching this skill, so don't be alarmed if you have already been taught this and you use a different method.

The Video - This video shows you a demonstration on how to parallel park. There are lots of methods and techniques you could use to do this exercise but I find that this one works best for my students.

If you're interested in taking driving lessons or whether you need refresher lessons then you can contact Shaun's Driving School of Andover here Shaun's Driving School Andover

Monday, 30 January 2017

Is the UK Heading Towards Automatic Cars in Favour of Manual Transmission?

Are more and more Driving Instructors turning towards giving driving lessons in automatics?

Are are seeing more and more driving instructors in the UK buying cars with automatic transmission. Do we think this is due to the fact that there is more of a demand within the market place now. We asked two driving instructors from two different parts of the country. First we asked Shaun from Superdrive Academy in Andover, Hampshire and then we asked a driving instructor in Wales.

Within the past two weeks, I've had three driving instructors call me up and ask if we can create them an online presence and branding coupled with a social media profile that can represent that they now only offer driving lessons in automatic cars and not manual anymore.

This is a very quick and significant shift towards market trends. I closely watch lots and lots of online forums and what I can see is that as driving instructors talk to one another, part of their questions on the blogs or forums are questions about what car to choose. Surprisingly, I am seeing existing driving schools and driving instructors who already teach in automatic cars often say how busy they are in business and some are even saying how much business they've got to turn away.

The demand to learn to drive in an automatic and take automatic driving lessons is certainly on the up and I can't see this changing any time within the near future.

My most recent customer, Evolved Driving School in Llandudno, North Wales only gives driving lessons in automatic cars and have got rid of their manual transmission ones.

There has always been room in the market place for automatic driving lessons and the need for automatic driving schools, but the demand is greater than ever. The manager of Evolved Driving School in Llandudno has also given me information that he now is expanding his driving school business to accommodate the need for automatic driving lessons in Rhly Evolved Automatic Driving School in Llandudno and Rhyl

He has explained to me that he gets enquiries from all age ranges and not just from the older age range as like what it used to be in the past. Maybe times are changing in this area?

How to become a Driving Instructor

Train to become a Driving Instructor by Shaun's Driving School in Andover

If you are looking to become a Driving Instructor, then either Superdrive Academy in Andover or Shaun's Driving School in Andover can give you all the training necessary. When you do your training, you are not just buying a training package; you are buying a new career, and a new lifestyle. I believe that your training to become a Driving Instructor should not cost you thousands of £££’s. On a national average, big companies such as BSM, AA etc can charge you £3,000 to £3,500 and sometimes upwards. At ADITC we ensure you get an honest service.

If you are looking into taking up a career as a Driving Instructor. Don’t get ripped off by choosing the wrong Training Provider. So many training companies out there will just take your money off you and then promise you a job with an exaggerated salary, when I know first hand this is not true and they just want to take a franchise fee off you which is approximately £200 per week.

I believe you should pay just for the training and support you get and not the overheads for a big company such as their office rent, accountancy teams, company cars, sales & marketing teams, Directors bonuses etc etc. Also, why pay into a franchise when that £840 per month can go into your own bank account. Why not reach for the stars and set yourself up with your own business. I will train you how and show you how to do this.

By paying less does not necessarily mean you’re getting less, that’s why my prices for my training are very competitive and work either on a “Pay as You Go” basis or a “Pre-set Price” training package option. Whichever course package you choose you will get more than the right amount of training tailored to your needs and I will teach you the skills that will place you amongst the top 5% of drivers in the country and also be a successful Driving Instructor. My courses also include a one day business start-up training workshop so you will have all the tools and information necessary to start your own business if you want to and to be a success.

You are not just buying a training package; you are buying a new career, and investing into a new lifestyle and the backing and support of my skills and knowledge of which I have accumulated through many years of training and development experience. All of the people I have trained are in demand by Learner drivers in their local area and can earn in the region of £1000 per week, this could be you.

You will also benefit from extensive Continued Personal Development (CPD) on an individual basis. Most Driving Schools will take your fee without offering you any type of CPD – this is a recipe for disaster. Continued Personal development is key to your success in this industry, therefore, I am not just here for the duration of your training but I will support you in any way we can long after you have finished your training regardless of how many months or years has gone by.

What’s Involved to become a Driving Instructor and what are the steps?

The Legal Process – It’s a fairly straight forward process to become a Driving Instructor, as no qualifications or previous experience is necessary, but first you must tick a few boxes:

You must have held a driving license for at least 4 years prior to you applying to become an ADI. You must not have more than 6 points on your license, if you have then please discuss this with me.

You have to be able to read a number plate (new style) from 26.5 metres, glasses or contacts are allowed. You have to complete a CRB check. Next, you have to take and pass the 3 Driving and Vehicle Standards Agency exams.

The Process.
You will sit the 3 exams at your local ADI test centre. Part 1 is a computer based Theory and Hazard Perception Test. The Part 2 is a test of your driving ability and the Part 3 is a test of Instructional Ability.

You must pass each exam in order before you can move onto the next. Qualification must be within two years of passing the first exam. Our job is to prepare you for all 3 exams by giving you a high standard of training.

Part 1 Test: Theory and Hazard Perception.
This is a computer based test which consists of 100 multiple choice questions. There are 4 categories and you need to score a minimum of 20 out of 25 in each category which are:
  • traffic signs and signals
  • car control, pedestrians and mechanical knowledge
  • driving test, disabilities, and the law
  • publications and instructional techniques
Hazard Perception Test – You will be shown 14 video clips, each containing at least one developing hazard. You need to identify the hazards as they develop. You need to get a minimum of 57 out of a maximum 75 marks to pass.

Part 2 Test: Driving Ability. This is a driving test and lasts for about 1 hour. You must be able to demonstrate a high level of driving ability, anticipation and consideration of other road users, expert car handling and control, correct road procedure and driving in an environmentally friendly manner. You will also complete a set of manoeuvres such as reverse around a corner and reverse park your vehicle. There is also an independent driving part to this test which generally lasts approximately 10 minutes.

Part 3 Test: Instructional Ability. This test is to assess the quality of your instruction and your ability to pass your knowledge on to your pupils. The test lasts for 1 hour and is split into 2 parts with each part being 30 minutes long, Phase 1 and Phase 2.

Phase 1: The examiner will act a role of a pupil at a beginner or partly trained stage and will choose a subject for you to teach him. Phase 2: The examiner will act the role of a pupil who is near test standard or a qualified driver wanting driving development training.

In each case, the examiner will describe the type of pupil and the subject he wants you to deliver to him from a list of pre-set tests, for example; approaching junctions to turn either left or right.

You will be assessed on 3 main areas during your test:
  • core competencies
  • instructional techniques
  • instructor characteristics
Core competencies The examiner will assess how well you:
  • identify and prioritise faults
  • analyse and explain faults
  • give instruction to correct faults
Instructional techniques The examiner will assess how well you:
  • match your level of instruction to the ability and experience of the ‘pupil’
  • plan the lesson
  • control the lesson
  • communicate with the ‘pupil’
  • use question and answer techniques
  • give feedback and encourage the ‘pupil’
Instructor characteristics The examiner will assess whether you:
  • have a relaxed and friendly manner, but aren’t over familiar
  • appear confident, and are able to fill your ‘pupil’ with confidence in a patient and tactful way
Once you pass the Part 3 test you then apply for your ADI badge and then you are a fully qualified Driving Instructor and you can get your new career on the road.

Shaun's Driving School has already trained up a few Driving Instructor's in Andover and around the UK so, if you think you've got what it takes to be a Driving Instructor then give me a call.