A dogbiz University Course
The Best Classes In Town
Smooth out class income peaks and valleys and set students up for success in class and in real life
No matter your class program size, whether a couple sessions a week or a full-blown schedule, we’ll show you how to work less for more success—yours and your students.
Having the best classes in town means:
- Filling your classes—and keeping them full
- Students who come back after puppy & basic
- No more missed sessions & make-up hassles
- Teaching multiple skill levels with ease
- Consistent income without peaks & valleys
- Calm, easy, focused classes
- Student success in class & in real life
What you get:
- Inspiring, expert instruction
- Access to session recordings
- Presentation materials for note taking
Two bonus modules about structuring online classes and coaching clients and students online, taken from our Survive & Thrive series
The Best Classes In Town is 5 modules + 1 bonus module.
Understanding Challenges & Defining Success
What’s behind the common struggles to fill classes, keep students coming every week, and get them to come back after puppy and basic? Why is it so hard to get students to use what they learn in class at home? Why don’t the common solutions for working with students and dogs at different levels actually make it easier to teach classes? Why do enrollment and income fluctuate constantly throughout the year?
We answer these questions, then look past common definitions of class success (students having fun and liking their instructor, dogs performing well) to a definition of success that provides a new way to frame real solutions. With this definition in mind, we introduce the four pillars of a thriving class program, and how each contributes to overcoming common class challenges and building the best classes in town—yours.
Pillar #1: Choosing the Right Class Structure
Think of class structure as the foundation of your class program, the way your skeleton provides your body structure, or concrete forms a platform to build your home. Get your structure wrong and your entire program sits on shaky ground. This is one area where many programs fail and, like a home foundation, the cracks often go unnoticed for far too long.
We’ll explore the pros and cons of various structures, from regular sequential classes to elaborate levels and modular programs. We’ll look at the common mistakes made in each, how these foundational cracks manifest, and how to avoid or fix them. We’ll show you how to decide what kind of foundation to build your program on (or move it over to), and how to make it as solid as possible.
Pillar #2: Offering the Right Classes
The courses you offer—what you cover in them, what you call them, and how you describe and explain them—are a key element to your program’s success. So in week 3 we look at how to choose and position your courses, whether you’re teaching just a few classes each week or offering a full schedule.
We’ll explore more successful approaches to entry-level puppy and basic manners classes, innovative approaches to retention classes (i.e., anything after basic), best practices for ongoing sports and specialty classes (such as agility, nose work, Rally-o, etc.), and creating outside-the-box offerings tailored to your specific local audiences to differentiate your program, create new sources of revenue, and help even out seasonal peaks and valleys in your income.
Pillar #3: Teaching the Right Curriculum
If structure is the skeleton of your program, curriculum is its heart. It’s the heating and electricity that make your house a comfortable home. You can make great structural choices and offer the right courses, but neither of those decisions will matter if your curriculum doesn’t do what it should.
Your curriculum has one central, must-achieve goal: Set students up for success in their lives outside your classroom. If your classes don’t actively change students’ lives with their dogs, your program will suffer.
To achieve this goal curriculum must be properly matched to class structure (forcing old sequential ways of teaching into more modern structures like open enrollment or levels is what creates that headless chicken feel as you run from student to student giving mini-privates in class).
Curriculum must also be designed to teach students the knowledge and skills they need, rather than to teach dogs specific behaviors. It’s commonly said how important it is to teach people rather than dogs, but the vast majority of class curriculum fails to do so. In this session, we show you what curriculum that does so really looks like.
Pillar #4: Making the Right Business Decisions
We’ll show you effective marketing approaches for increasing awareness of your classes, how to avoid common class marketing mistakes, how to let people know you’re there, and how to make sure your messaging makes them want to jump in once they do.
We’ll also discuss how to decide what to charge for your classes, including avoiding common misconceptions and mistakes about setting class rates. We want to get your policies just right, too. The right policies—and a simple, effective strategy for enforcing them—will put an end to the extra work and headache caused by missed classes and make-up sessions.
The Secret to Classroom Management
Plus we’ll share a full toolbox of tips for gracefully handling common classroom situations like reactive dogs, unmanaged children, chatty and distracted students, students who don’t engage during practice sessions, and students who challenge your R+ training approach or continue to share or use outdated training ideas during class.
This module aims to give you everything you need to feel fully and confidently in control of your classes, no matter their make-up or what unexpected situations arise.
Ready to make yours the best classes in town?