Weekend training courses have become a world-wide industry. You can find courses about almost anything but the most common are about property investing, trading and Internet business.
One of the best investments you can make is in yourself. You have probably heard it a lot of times, especially people who are selling training are fond using that phrase. But it is certainly true, learning new skills can make you more productive and it may also be possible to make more money as well. There is just one thing that you must be fully aware of, not all training is worth paying for.
Every now and then you can read horror stories about people who paid 2,000 or more to attend a property investment course. Typically the training is short, just two or three days. Sometimes it was also possible to buy off-the-plan units during the training. The problem was that the training was virtually worthless, the whole idea was to sell investment properties and get generous commissions from the developers. Unfortunately, for those who invested in the properties, the investments had typically been chosen because they got the promoter the biggest commission. For the investors, such properties often meant huge losses.
The training was aimed at beginners who did not know anything about property investments. In most cases, you could learn much more about property investments by buying a book for fraction of the price of the training course. Worst of all was that often the training was more of a sales pitch than eduction. The message was simple, property investing is an easy way of getting rich, just invest in our off-the-plan properties.
Since property is not as hot as it used to be and banks are not as generous with lending as before the financial crisis, real estate training has become less popular. But you can find the same kind of “training” in many other areas, for example trading and Internet business. There is plenty of money for those who hold seminars or promote them. Often, useless training are sold at free seminars, the people behind the free seminar typically gets 30% or so of the training fee.
Of course not all expensive training is poor but it can often be difficult to tell the difference between good and bad training courses. Poor trading courses are relatively easy to spot. There are no magic methods or software which will always pick winners. But there are plenty of people who are selling trading courses or software which are supposed to more or less automatically turn you into millionaire. All you need to do is to pay for the training, if you sign up today you get a generous discount, only 2,000 but only today, the ordinary price is much higher. The sales pitch is very simple, it is cool being a millionaire and everyone can become a successful trader. Even better, no experience is required, you just need two or three days of training.
Unfortunately, some people believe the hype and sign up for the training. You don’t need to know much about trading to know that there is no method which is guaranteed to be profitable. Virtually all studies show that most traders lose money, even if the market is going up. It is not impossible making money as a trader but that takes much more than a weekend training course or some magic software.
Even worse is that the expensive training is often worse than worthless. Since only people who know nothing about trading are likely to sign up, the training seldom contains much useful information. The training may just be a lot of talk about how easy it is making money, using some random examples as proof. A good book about trading for a fraction of the price often contains much more useful information.
Internet business is another popular target for scams. Running a profitable Internet business has many advantages but the competition is tough. It takes much more than a weekend training to build a successful Internet business. But you can find people who have simple solutions for you, you just pay for their magic software or training which will reveal a secret way of making money on the Internet. Once again, the price is very often two thousand dollars, euros or pounds, but only today and they throw in bonuses which are supposed to be worth tens of thousands. A fantastic bargain, or?
When it comes to Internet business, it is a little bit more difficult to spot scams but there are plenty of warning bells if you pay a little bit of attention. The best way is to try to understand what kind of people the presenter is targeting. Is it mostly about how cool it is to be a Internet millionaire, secret methods or magic software? Is the target audience beginners without any knowledge about Internet business?
Unfortunately, expensive Internet business training aimed at beginners can often do more harm than good. It takes time to build a business and software which after a few clicks creates a profitable web site does not exist. If you can sell ghost canes for $50,000 or hot dogs for $40 on ebay, you would get rich quickly but what is the likelihood of such things happening on a regular basis?
Another trick which is good to remember is that getting twice your money back if the course did not live up to expectations is generally a warning bell. Obviously, such a money back guarantee is not unconditional. Gilette may be reliable but for expensive training, you may easily find out that you will only get your money back if you can prove that the training is worthless. Something which may very well require a lot of time and money. And even if you can prove that the training is worthless, don’t be too surprised if you have trouble getting your money back.
Don’t be afraid of investing in yourself but don’t be naive and waste your money. It is always a good idea to start with a book or two to understand the basics. You can find plenty of information on the Internet for free, just make sure that it is not just a sales pitch disguised as information. Once you know the basics, you can much easier judge what training is worth paying for and what is just waste of time and money.