Are you looking to start a career in home staging? Researching your options is crutial
Before you begin your research ask yourself:
What do I need to learn from a staging program?
List your strengths, your weaknesses, and what you feel would make you more confident to go into the business world as a stager. Do you want to own your own staging company? Do you want to work for another staging company? Where do you see yourself 2 years from now. Be sure to address if any of the following are important to you.
1. A designation – in the staging industry this is used to brand a specific organization, it says you are a committed to self education and believe in being the best you can be. Some argue this is not valuable as the staging industry is not regulated. You need to decide if this is something that is important to you. Could it be important to the clients that will hire you?
Questions to ask: Do you earn a designation upon completion? Is it earned or just passed out for participation? If earned, how? Is there testing? How is the designation branded? What advertising does your organization do to make the designation recognized? What message does your designation say to the public?
2. Who is the trainer? – What is their background? What would make them a good teacher? Have they had their own staging business? Do they have training experience? Were they trained by another home staging trainer? You can research most trainers backgrounds on the staging programs websites.
Questions to ask: Can I speak directly to the trainer? What is there background prior to training your program? Have they ever owned their own staging business?
2. General Staging Process – There are different staging models for different training companies. If you need help in this area, be sure to add this to your list of what is important to you. Even if you think you know all about staging, or you have an existing staging background, you will be pleasantly surprised with some staging programs, how much more you will learn.
Questions to ask: What we will learn in your staging curriculum? How much time is spent on the staging process? After class, if I have questions do you have a support system in place?
3. Marketing Strategies – Are you confident in marketing yourself and your new business? If not, marketing is a necessary step to running a successful staging company. How much marketing do you need to learn from your staging training program?
Questions to ask: How much time is spent on learning marketing? What is addressed in your marketing curriculum? How does your organization help their graduates with marketing after the program?
4. Hands-on learning or online learning? – How do you learn best? From a book? From doing? From listening? This is one of the most important questions you will need to ask yourself before beginning your research. For Example: If you learn best by hands-on, do not take an online program just because it is cheaper, you will find you will not finish, or it will take you a long time to finish and the investment was more costly then you thought, as it will cost you time you could have been out staging already! Choose a staging program that teaches the way you learn best!
5. Industry tools and resources – Do you like to create your own tools, or do you like the wheel to be invented before you get there? Some staging programs will have the tools you need already developed. You only need to customize them to your company image.
Questions to ask: What industry tools do you have to provide us? What do we get Free with the training? Do you have a suggested list of industry tools we will need to get started? Are their other tools, and opportunities available to us that are exclusive to being a graduate of your program?
6. Staging Organization Membership – Many staging programs offer a yearly membership after the initial class program. You need to decide if this is important to you. As member of an organization there are opportunities and feature benefits to being part of a larger group.
Questions to ask: Do you have a membership to belong to? What do you receive as a member? What is the yearly rate?
7. Bulk Advertising Opportunities – Is receiving discounts for advertising opportunities important to you? Stretching your marketing dollars can make the difference when first starting your business.
Questions to ask: Do you have any bulk advertising opportunities?
8. How much are you willing to invest in your education You need to weigh what you will learn by how much you need to invest. Be careful not to sacrifice valuable learning by cheaper programs. Do they have continuing programs? Some programs allow you to revisit their program as a refresher anytime at no charge to you…is this something you would want?
Questions to ask: How much is your program? Do you offer refresher programs as the industry changes, to keep graduates informed? Can you send me an information package?
9. ASK GRADUATES OF THE PROGRAM! Do not take it from those paid to sell the programs. Ask those who have graduated from the program. Most staging programs have a directory of stagers online at your disposal. Call them up. Here is a tip. Call people you can tell have utilized the programs features. For example: filled out their directory pages, have photographs and before and afters. They will be the most educated because they have worked the program.
Questions to ask: Did the course meet your expectations? What is it you like best about the program? When did you take the program? Do they offer support after the class? Did you take any other staging programs? Do you recommend the program to someone wanting to get started in the staging industry.
What ever the reason for seeking out a home staging training program, enrolling in the Certified Staging Professional program will ensure you reach your goal. For your free information package visit www.stagingtraining.com.
Certified Staging Professional organization is a division of Decorating Solutions (Niagara) Inc. Headquartered in St. Catharines Ontario, the CSP organization is a leading authority on home staging training with the largest network of certified staging consultants coast to coast. Our unique method of training has been endorsed by a world authority of home staging – Ann Maurice, TV’s House Doctor.
Upcoming Classes in San Diego, Chicago, Portland, Pittsburgh and more…visit www.stagingtraining.com for a complete list of dates and locations.
Angela Brooks (firstname.lastname@example.org)