How Becoming a Business Tutor Actually Helped Improve My Own Business
Posted Dec 20, 2017 by Peter Ellington

How Becoming a Business Tutor Actually Helped Improve My Own Business

When I first heard about business tutoring and was approached to share some of my knowledge, I thought it was just about educating business newcomers and giving some people a step up. I was still happy to give my knowledge away, but I didn’t think I would get much out of it in return.

I was wrong.

Becoming a business tutor eventually made a huge difference to my own business. We’re going to look at how.

You see, I’d been running a few successful businesses for a while, so when I was approached to share some of my entrepreneurial knowledge, I was flattered. I couldn’t see a reason why not. I didn’t buy into the school of thought that treated these business newcomers as potential competition.

I was happy to share my knowledge, but I wasn’t particularly passionate about the idea either. I thought I’d tutor for a weekend or an evening every month to give something back to the business community.

Slowly, I started to see a number of benefits for my actual business and started to learn a few things myself.

Helping Others Gives You Something

Even before we get onto talking about how my business improved as a result of becoming a business tutor, it’s important to emphasize how tutoring can be beneficial to the tutor on a personal level.

Sharing knowledge feels good — and it’s good to know you’re giving something back to the community. If anything, it improves your self-worth. It also gives you a sense of perspective that can help you grow as well as your students.

Business tutoring

That being said, I’m sure you want practical benefits rather than just “it makes you feel good about yourself” style advice. So let’s get down to it.

Business Tutoring Offers Unrivalled Networking Benefits

It is probably the number one reason to get involved with your local business mentoring system — networking. Yes, most of the students will be just starting out, but they’ll all have tons of passion, a great work ethic — and most importantly — ideas. Some of these ideas need a little work, but they could be something that helps your business.

You never know when you might need to work with someone you met on one of these tutoring schemes again, and what benefits they could bring to your business.

One of my first students was a budding marketer with a few unique ideas. I helped fine-tune some of his best ones to make them more applicable in the real business world. Anyway, after I finished tutoring him, we went our separate ways, and I hoped he’d make it a success.

A few years later, I was looking for a local marketing firm to help me with campaigns, and someone recommended one I hadn’t heard of before. I checked them out, and it just happened to be run by that very same student — he’d really made a success of it. He was so pleased with the initial help that I gave him that he offered me my first bit of marketing for free, as a thank you.

Networking and partnership

It’s not just about getting freebies, either. Another student I worked with realized he had a lot more to learn than he thought, and asked me for an internship at my own business. I’m not in the habit of using unpaid labor as I don’t think it suits my business and I want my staff to be more invested in our success, so I took him on as a paid apprentice. Three years later, he became one of my best salespeople.

Not everyone you meet in business tutoring is looking to set up their own company in the short or even medium term. Some just want a job — and they’re among some of the best candidates I’ve seen in the industry.

Learn more: How to Hire and Manage Staff for Your Growing Online Store

Business Tutoring Helps Promote Your Business

As with most networking opportunities, tutoring is a two-way street. Not only could there be a vast number of opportunities from the students getting tutored. It’s also a great place to spread the word about your other businesses.

When I became a tutor, I started noticing my students mentioning me to their friends and other people who might be interested. In fact, sales went up noticeably and I was even told personally by a few new clients that they had been recommended to me by one of my students.

Business tutoring can be great for your business, too. You can spread your business reach and learn new ideas from passionate students. I know I learned a lot more about both my business and the industry in general when I decided to become a business tutor.

Related: 15 Practical Ideas for Promoting a Small Business Locally

How to Get Started With Business Tutoring

If you’re still keen to get into business tutoring after having a look at this article, I’m pleased my story has helped in some way. You might be asking yourself how you get started in the industry.

The first step is to have a look at different tutoring services in your local area. Do a quick search for options and alternatives. I first learned about potential services through my local chamber of commerce and other local networking events. If you’ve got a business school in your area, they could also have a lot of connections, as could a regular education college or university.

You can apply to become a tutor in Iowa State University

You can apply to become a tutor at Iowa State University

Business tutoring services are looking for tutors of differing experience levels. So don’t worry if you think you’re not knowledgeable to get started. You don’t have to know everything, and you’ll learn more as you go along, just like I did. The best way to get a handle on things is to arrange a meeting and have a chat with someone senior in the industry to get a handle on what you can offer.

Most tutoring services will put you in touch with potential students themselves, so you don’t need to worry about finding them. When I agreed to do some tutoring for a local provider, they already had a list of people who were interested. I also found a couple more by word of mouth and at local networking events.

You might be worried about time-management and how to manage your other business commitments alongside tutoring, but you only need to start by offering a couple of hours a week in the evenings. I found it a welcome break from my normal day-to-day business activities.

Also read: Elon Musk’s 8 Time Management Principles to Work like a Machine

This is a guest story by Peter Ellington. If you want to share your experience on the Ecwid blog, please read our guidelines.

About the author
Peter has years of experience in business and enjoys helping others improve their skills. He also writes for a business tuition site based in Singapore.
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