Qualifying a Teacher -or- How to Find the Best Trading Service

JimTru

Junior member
32 0
Successful, honest, understanding and truly helpful trading teachers and mentors are very difficult to find.
I've been through 28 trading services, teachers and mentors over the last 15 years and have learned how to qualify a person before giving them a dime of my money or an hour of my time. I've gone through a lot of pain and loss, and hope to save some of you that trouble. Below are some good questions to ask any service or teacher before investing your time and money with them. The questions will serve to discover their level of honesty, sincerity and competence. Be sure to record their answers and post them somewhere public, preferably on their own website's forum.

Why are you running a service? Most will answer, "To help others now that I am succeeding." Further questions below will reveal if that's true or a lie. If they're lying, then they're only running a service to make money, because they're lonely or to use you as an accountability partner; all purely selfish reasons. If they can't make enough money trading, or they make more money through the service than trading, that's a big red flag. The best answers have a religious undertone: to give back because it's the right thing to do, because they feel guilty succeeding when others are hurting, or to find and grow traders to help trade larger pools of money. Those good answers will open the door to get answers to the really tough questions below--if they are telling the truth.

What is your goal for students / subscribers? The best answer is: "To help them become successful." Further questions below will reveal if that's true or a lie. If they have no such goal, then they have no way of knowing if they are helping or actually hurting people.

How do you measure if you're reaching your goal of helping others? Almost all have no way to measure if they are reaching this goal. Some will answer, "If they re-subscribe or if they stay with me." Many students will stick with a teacher well beyond the point of failure, hoping that they will "get it" and turn their trading around. The best way to measure a student's success is by reviewing their trades with them.

Do you review each student's trading activity? Perhaps using their brokerage statement? How often? Verify this answer with the students you talk to. Ask them if they are satisfied with how often their reviews are and if they are effective.

How many brokerage accounts do you have? This will reveal if they have the ability to post trading activity from only the accounts that have profits for that day/week/month and omit the losers. It will also indicate if they trade ideas other than what they are teaching in the class / for the service. If so, why are they doing that? Can't they make enough money trading the service's ideas?

Are your brokerage statements available for review from your broker? If not, this reveals that they are trading other ideas, taking other risks, than what they are teaching. That's ok, but if they are teaching you not to take those risks, and to limit your trading, then they are being deceptive and not following their own rules. If they truly want to be helpful, and they are successful, they'd be happy for you to know that they are successful and honest.

Are you willing to take gains and losses with me after I've completed your course? This measures the teacher's own faith in their ability to teach successfully. If they are confident that they can make a profitable trader out of you, then they'd be happy to split your profits with you.

How do you measure the success or failure of your students / subscribers? Most teachers will have an amount of time they claim to be able to bring people to "success" or profitability. How do they know you've arrived? From where do they get that number, that amount of time?

May I speak with others who have completed your course? Here's where you'll learn from the students / subscribers themselves. Most of these people will be hand-picked and will have had some kind of success already, so be sure to ask for the people who have just completed the training in the recommended amount of time. When speaking with them, ask about their level of education, intelligence, past experience in trading, amount of money they are trading, and what they would like to change about the trading service. Ask if their trades are being reviewed and if the feedback they're getting from the teacher actually helps them.

How do you find out if a prospective student is in a financial position to trade? Most don't do any checking of a student's bank account, current income, obligations or family situation. Most are reckless in this regard, ready to risk you and your family's future on their ambitions.

How do you find out if a prospective student is qualified to be able to learn from you? Qualifications to be a successful trader vary, but there are some things that all students should have: time, money, intelligence, an absence of certain learning disabilities, a learning style that matches the teacher's teaching style. Most services won't make any effort to qualify students before taking their money.

What is your success rate for your students / subscribers? I've heard the success rate for becoming a consistently profitable futures trader is around 8% of those who try. At least this question will uncover their definition of "success".

Do you only trade the signals and ideas you offer through the service or something more? Why? A good answer is that they have more money than they can trade with, so they have longer positions in other markets. A review of the trades in other accounts will tell the student if their trading ideas are robust, and if they following their own guidelines for trading in general.

How long does it take the average student to become consistently profitable? The usual answer is 90 days or something like that. I wish that were true for me. I would have been consistently profitable 40 times over. If the answer is greater than two years, you might consider getting a graduate degree instead. Up until the time you are consistently profitable, you'll be losing money consistently. Make sure to check this answer with the students you speak with.

What is your succession plan? If you want to stop teaching others, what will be done for those who have not yet completing their training? If they have no plan, then they are willing to take your money and leave you with little. Most don't care about their students in this regard.

Do you have a plan to handle the growth of your service? Are you training apprentices that can help you teach others and run the service when you are absent or otherwise unavailable? I've been in chat rooms filled with people with many questions that the teacher could never answer and trade the market at the same time. The correct answer is to break up the room into groups of maturity and allow the apprentices and accomplished students lead the newer students, while the teacher leads the advanced traders. Most providers don't want to share power or control, for fear of losing students (money). If they really are trying to help people, they don't mind when people leave to find something more suitable. What will happen to the investment of your time when your teacher has a life-altering event such as divorce, sickness, extended vacation, law suit or changes their mind about running a service? Having partners in place ensures your education will continue until you've arrived.

If you've found a teacher/service that has answered these questions, I invite you to post these questions and their answers in reply to this thread. If you are a service provider or teacher, and you are legitimately interested in helping others, I invite you to change how you recruit and qualify students/subscribers and reply with your new and honest answers to these questions.
 

small_beer

Junior member
19 2
Sorry, but you are simply not realistic. People you are looking for do not exist. Or if they do, they will not bother with you because they have better things to do than to answer a whole bunch of questions not all of which are entirely reasonable, IMO.

I am not saying that your questions are not legitimate, but I think your take on some things is too extreme or too idealistic.

For instance, I believe you are totally entitled to see brokerage statements from anyone you want to hire to trade your account. Otherwise, be prepared to pay a lot if you want to see them. Privacy costs too. Are you willing to pay extra? Most people expect something for nothing. That's not fair too. There are also legal limitations in this matter (at least in the US), so that complicates things too.

"Are you willing to take gains and losses with me after I've completed your course?" Are you kidding me? Ask any surgeon if he would like to pay your medical bills if his surgery is not totally successful.

Try to run a business and you will change your opinion about most of what you posted here. I happen to be a business owner and while I am critical about most vendors, I try to apply a business perspective when dealing with them if I have to. I don't think that's your perspective.
 

JimTru

Junior member
32 0
...they will not bother with you because they have better things to do...
...
"Are you willing to take gains and losses with me after I've completed your course?" Are you kidding me? Ask any surgeon if he would like to pay your medical bills if his surgery is not totally successful.

SB, thanks for the reply. Generally, I'd advise a vendor to be completely honest and disclose everything. If you're selling something because you can't or don't trade, just be up front about it. About your reply:

If they have better things to do than to help me, or answer what might appear on the surface to be "dumb" questions of mine, then that tells us something valuable about them, doesn't it? Their motives are selfish and when they don't see value in helping someone, not even to gain them as a subscriber or to continue to serve them as a customer, they won't help. Why is "help" defined by the Teacher and not the Student?

If a surgeon claims they will cure me with a surgery and I end up being worse off, then not only am I not to pay their bill, they are to pay me for pain and suffering, and being negligent as awarded in a malpractice lawsuit.

I encourage readers to look at the questions as provoking answers that reveal the true motives and beliefs of the Teacher / Provider. They might not answer "Yes" or "No" but what they do say or what they choose to avoid is telling.

James: yes, I found a few, but I did not qualify to be their student.
 

neil

Legendary member
5,167 748
Successful, honest, understanding and truly helpful trading teachers and mentors are very difficult to find.
I've been through 28 trading services, teachers and mentors over the last 15 years and have learned how to qualify a person before giving them a dime of my money or an hour of my time. I've gone through a lot of pain and loss, and hope to save some of you that trouble. Below are some good questions to ask any service or teacher before investing your time and money with them. The questions will serve to discover their level of honesty, sincerity and competence. Be sure to record their answers and post them somewhere public, preferably on their own website's forum.

Why are you running a service? Most will answer, "To help others now that I am succeeding." Further questions below will reveal if that's true or a lie. If they're lying, then they're only running a service to make money, because they're lonely or to use you as an accountability partner; all purely selfish reasons. If they can't make enough money trading, or they make more money through the service than trading, that's a big red flag. The best answers have a religious undertone: to give back because it's the right thing to do, because they feel guilty succeeding when others are hurting, or to find and grow traders to help trade larger pools of money. Those good answers will open the door to get answers to the really tough questions below--if they are telling the truth.

What is your goal for students / subscribers? The best answer is: "To help them become successful." Further questions below will reveal if that's true or a lie. If they have no such goal, then they have no way of knowing if they are helping or actually hurting people.

How do you measure if you're reaching your goal of helping others? Almost all have no way to measure if they are reaching this goal. Some will answer, "If they re-subscribe or if they stay with me." Many students will stick with a teacher well beyond the point of failure, hoping that they will "get it" and turn their trading around. The best way to measure a student's success is by reviewing their trades with them.

Do you review each student's trading activity? Perhaps using their brokerage statement? How often? Verify this answer with the students you talk to. Ask them if they are satisfied with how often their reviews are and if they are effective.

How many brokerage accounts do you have? This will reveal if they have the ability to post trading activity from only the accounts that have profits for that day/week/month and omit the losers. It will also indicate if they trade ideas other than what they are teaching in the class / for the service. If so, why are they doing that? Can't they make enough money trading the service's ideas?

Are your brokerage statements available for review from your broker? If not, this reveals that they are trading other ideas, taking other risks, than what they are teaching. That's ok, but if they are teaching you not to take those risks, and to limit your trading, then they are being deceptive and not following their own rules. If they truly want to be helpful, and they are successful, they'd be happy for you to know that they are successful and honest.

Are you willing to take gains and losses with me after I've completed your course? This measures the teacher's own faith in their ability to teach successfully. If they are confident that they can make a profitable trader out of you, then they'd be happy to split your profits with you.

How do you measure the success or failure of your students / subscribers? Most teachers will have an amount of time they claim to be able to bring people to "success" or profitability. How do they know you've arrived? From where do they get that number, that amount of time?

May I speak with others who have completed your course? Here's where you'll learn from the students / subscribers themselves. Most of these people will be hand-picked and will have had some kind of success already, so be sure to ask for the people who have just completed the training in the recommended amount of time. When speaking with them, ask about their level of education, intelligence, past experience in trading, amount of money they are trading, and what they would like to change about the trading service. Ask if their trades are being reviewed and if the feedback they're getting from the teacher actually helps them.

How do you find out if a prospective student is in a financial position to trade? Most don't do any checking of a student's bank account, current income, obligations or family situation. Most are reckless in this regard, ready to risk you and your family's future on their ambitions.

How do you find out if a prospective student is qualified to be able to learn from you? Qualifications to be a successful trader vary, but there are some things that all students should have: time, money, intelligence, an absence of certain learning disabilities, a learning style that matches the teacher's teaching style. Most services won't make any effort to qualify students before taking their money.

What is your success rate for your students / subscribers? I've heard the success rate for becoming a consistently profitable futures trader is around 8% of those who try. At least this question will uncover their definition of "success".

Do you only trade the signals and ideas you offer through the service or something more? Why? A good answer is that they have more money than they can trade with, so they have longer positions in other markets. A review of the trades in other accounts will tell the student if their trading ideas are robust, and if they following their own guidelines for trading in general.

How long does it take the average student to become consistently profitable? The usual answer is 90 days or something like that. I wish that were true for me. I would have been consistently profitable 40 times over. If the answer is greater than two years, you might consider getting a graduate degree instead. Up until the time you are consistently profitable, you'll be losing money consistently. Make sure to check this answer with the students you speak with.

What is your succession plan? If you want to stop teaching others, what will be done for those who have not yet completing their training? If they have no plan, then they are willing to take your money and leave you with little. Most don't care about their students in this regard.

Do you have a plan to handle the growth of your service? Are you training apprentices that can help you teach others and run the service when you are absent or otherwise unavailable? I've been in chat rooms filled with people with many questions that the teacher could never answer and trade the market at the same time. The correct answer is to break up the room into groups of maturity and allow the apprentices and accomplished students lead the newer students, while the teacher leads the advanced traders. Most providers don't want to share power or control, for fear of losing students (money). If they really are trying to help people, they don't mind when people leave to find something more suitable. What will happen to the investment of your time when your teacher has a life-altering event such as divorce, sickness, extended vacation, law suit or changes their mind about running a service? Having partners in place ensures your education will continue until you've arrived.

If you've found a teacher/service that has answered these questions, I invite you to post these questions and their answers in reply to this thread. If you are a service provider or teacher, and you are legitimately interested in helping others, I invite you to change how you recruit and qualify students/subscribers and reply with your new and honest answers to these questions.

You are a VENDOR yet are still looking for a teacher after FIFTEEN YEARS !!
FFS....you could have taught yourself to trade by using free websites like T2W etc in that time. Not exactly the advertisement to seek customers is it?:LOL:
 

JimTru

Junior member
32 0
Neil, thanks for the reply.

15 years is the truth and I don't care to cover that up for the sake of making myself look better for any reason.

My hope in this post is to save some readers some pain and loss.
 

neil

Legendary member
5,167 748
Neil, thanks for the reply.

15 years is the truth and I don't care to cover that up for the sake of making myself look better for any reason.

My hope in this post is to save some readers some pain and loss.

A noble pursuit - good luck.
 

NVP

Legendary member
37,760 2,100
Neil, thanks for the reply.

15 years is the truth and I don't care to cover that up for the sake of making myself look better for any reason.

My hope in this post is to save some readers some pain and loss.

We are all eternal students in this game..........:cool:
 
 
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