by Harry Averill:
We expect a lot of professional diving educators. Right out of the box, we want instructors to:
- Understand and follow training standards religiously.
- Serve as a role model for everything from equipment selection and use to adhering to safe diving practices.
- Support their dive center, training agency and fellow diving educators.
This is the minimum we expect from any dive professional. So what qualities set the most successful diving educators apart from others? Here are four key ones:
- Focus — The most successful diving educators are able to give their students their complete and undivided attention. No matter what else is going on in their lives, the best instructors make students feel as though they are the center of the instructor’s universe.
- Commitment — The most effective diving educators are driven. Being the best instructor they possibly can is essential to these individuals’ sense of self worth. It is the instructors who demand the most from themselves who always seem to get the most from their students.
- Patience — The potential frustrations diving educators face can range can from problems with equipment, pools and boats to students who seem to take an impossibly long time to master even the most basic concepts and skills. Yet, despite this, the best instructors never lose their patience. They make students feel as though, no matter what, their instructor is not going to give up on them.
- Empathy — The most successful diving educators can relate to what their students are feeling and experiencing. They listen as much as they talk. They can see things from a student’s perspective and, as a consequence, make the task of learning easier.
If you think you might have what it takes to be a truly successful diving educator, contact your local SDI Dive Center. They can help you take the next step towards leadership.