The growing realisation that formal education is not the only gateway to success has opened up opportunities in areas like sports and other life skills. There is no better way to inculcate these than teach them to young children. Be it soccer, rugby, cricket, basic electronics or swimming, these skills may prove profitable at some point in life. Let us look at how you can start a coaching/ training business that targets children in this country.
You need to register the business first. If you are going to venture into skills like electronics, find out if there are any accreditations that may assist your business gain recognition and traction. In the same vein, if you are going into a soccer academy, being affiliated to big clubs and associations may also work wonders for you.
Your capital requirements will depend on what you decide to specialise in. A basic electronics training business may need some equipment to enhance the hands-on experience. A soccer academy business will also need balls, nets, bibs and the like. These do not normally cost much. As such, this business can be started without much capital injection and you can grow it as you go depending on its profitability.
That your premises should be in line with what you want to specialise in is a no brainer. To expect you to construct a stadium or your own swimming pool may be too much to ask if you are starting out. But, you need these if you are in that business. You can approach schools or sports clubs so that you rent their facilities. You must bear in mind though, that the more appealing your facilities are, the more you are likely to attract serious customers. In spite of the fact that the facilities are not yours, they must still be top notch.
In this line of business, equipment is essential. For a cooking business, you will need stoves, pots, pans and ingredients. The same goes for a sports coaching business. You need training kits, balls, first aid kits and other equipment. If your business is well equipped, you will offer effective training. Where new equipment has been introduced, try to follow trends. This will also lure customers to you.
Again, this is dependent on the size of your business. It also depends on what you decide to specialise in. The good thing is that this business does not need much administrative work so you may get away with just a part-time admin person if you cannot do it yourself. However, you still need expertise in the area which you specialise in. This will mean that your service will be of excellent quality. In fact, the more qualified you or your staff are, the more people will want to learn from you. Your credentials will speak for you.
Because you will be dealing with children, you need to be well experienced in how to handle them. Patience, communication and tolerance are some of the important virtues you need when dealing with children.
No business will make it without proper research. As such, you have to look around you. Find out where the gaps and opportunities are before you even open your doors. Find your niche and be the best there. Always check what your customers are lacking and find ways to be better serve them. Your research should also focus on the latest trends, technologies, methodologies and standards in your area of business, better ways of doing things. It is a fact that infrastructure for certain sports like rugby, cricket and basketball is still lagging behind in the country especially in rural areas. As such, look around and see where the best place to set up your business is. Location is everything.
Remember, your major market is children. Children do not normally make decisions on their own when they are young so your business needs to appeal to their parents or guardians who are likely to be paying you. It may be a good idea to use past success stories as a tool to market your business. People want to see results. So, show them what you have achieved over the years. A child who started out at your soccer academy and is now playing for a major professional team oversees may be a good advert for your business. Just make sure you study your market well and give the people what they want.
If you are venturing into a business like electronics or cooking training, you need to keep an eye on operating costs such as electricity and water. It is very easy to ignore these although they have a direct effect on your profitability.
Contacts are very important in every business. Ensure that you attend networking events in your line of business. Over time, you will have many people to mentor you, hold your hand and assist you where you are not sure. You can also get a lot of referral business from there.
As your business grows, you may find that it is necessary to link your graduates with opportunities to earn a living out of their skill or to take their skill a step further. That way, potential customers will see that there is a clear career path in the skill that you are offering.
One way of measuring how well you are doing in this business is by competing with others. If you are running a rugby academy, arrange matches with other teams so that you can see what progress you are making as compared to others.
How well you do from the onset will determine if customers will flock to your business. Passion alone is not enough to make this business a success. You need focus, application, business acumen and a whole lot more. That way, you will succeed.