RED Driving School’s Working Mums: getting to know Emma Davies
Freelancing or becoming a franchisee of a business is increasingly popular among career changers, as more and more people recognise the benefits of being their own boss and having control over their schedule. For parents, being able to spend more time with their family is another draw of switching to self-employment – and RED Driving School is offering them the chance to try something new.
So, Emma, tell us a bit about why you became a driving instructor.
Well, when I was looking for work, I turned on the computer and typed in ‘jobs’, and the second one on the search was ‘driving instructor’. All of a sudden I thought to myself, ‘I’m going to investigate that’. I’m a believer in things happening for a reason.
For anyone else thinking about going freelance or becoming a franchisee, what are the main skills needed for the job?
Enthusiasm – 100 percent. If you’re not enthusiastic, it’s going nowhere. You’ll just be that grumpy old driving instructor who sits there going, ‘Turn left, turn right’. You also need to be a people person – you have to be able to cope with all sorts of people, and realise that everybody is different and has different learning needs and learning speeds. You also need to have sales skills, and be able to sell yourself and believe in yourself. And organisational skills – because if you’re not organised, you’ve had it!
What are your favourite things about the job?
Meeting so many different characters – they’ve all got a story, and I love that. I enjoy the variety, too – I get pupils who are novice, which is great because I like taking on people from the start, but I also like picking up other people’s pupils. And, obviously, I love the passes. I really love it when people have struggled so long to get something, and then the penny drops, and then it happens for them.