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P1 Exclusive: "I want to become a trainer" Part 2

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"I want to become a trainer"
Sensei versus instructor

Thanks to everyone who provided me with such great feedback on Part 1 of this article. If you've starting working on getting yourself established, here are some additional things you can do to further your dream of making a living as a police trainer.

Street Survival Seminar instructor Betsy Brantner-Smith, seen here teaching some of her fellow officers, says that whether you're doing an in-service handcuffing class or giving the keynote speech at a major international conference, it's a fantastic feeling to stand before your peers and share your ideas.

Stay Current, Be Flexible

Always be a student. Law enforcement is an evolving profession - tactics change, tools change, communities change, and missions change - so trainers need to change with the times while remembering the basics. If you're going to stay with an established, long term concept, like slicing the pie, be prepared to articulate to your students why this particular tactic hasn't changed. "That's the way we've always done it" is never an acceptable answer in the classroom. In this day and age of realistic training options like Simunition, paintball, Airsoft, and Redman (to name but a few), there is no excuse to not be able to effectively demonstrate why you're teaching what you teach. If a technique doesn't stand up to realistic training scenarios, the student will never use it on the street, and you'll soon find yourself with an empty classroom.

Write Articles

One of the best ways to help establish yourself as a credible expert is to become a police author. There are many publications and websites (like PoliceOne, of course!) looking for subject matter experts who can put fingers to keyboard and share their expertise with others. Get started by reading the articles you enjoy and analyze why the article and the author's style appeals to you. Then take an aspect of your most polished training course, write an outline, and turn that outline into an article. Don't be afraid to quote other experts (but be certain to credit them appropriately and cite your research!) and submit the final product to an editor. Take any feedback, criticism, or rejection you receive graciously, and ask "what could I do better?" or, "what other topics are you looking for?"
Be wiling to write for free for a while - it's a great way to get your name out there and it allows you to add "police author" to your resume.

Make Your Resume Real

Resumes and curriculum vitae often get trainers in trouble. Why? Because some people tend exaggerate; others outright lie. If you once had three Border Patrol agents attend one of your classes, you cannot put on your resume "Trained the US Border Patrol." If you once traveled to Canada to teach a class, don't say that you have "trained officers throughout the world" on your website. If you once sat on a surveillance of a local drug dealer's house, you can't say you were an "undercover narcotics agent" on your vitae. Don't say you're certified if you're not, don't say you've worked in an assignment you haven't, and don't say you've trained people you haven't. In this age of information overload, everything on your résumé is easy to confirm and/or prove false.
Besides, lying is dishonorable, and we're a profession of honor and integrity.

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