Sunday, March 18, 2007

Added Benefits

I'm one of those people that jumps more at opportunities to work in an area I'm not familiar with but want to be, rather than looking for the security of decent pay, good hours, etc. For now, anyway.

However, other things that you can get out of a job are really worth looking into, especially if you've been in an industry for say twelve months, have gained some decent experience and are getting to know people in that industry.

For example, currently I'm working at two riding schools with the view to become qualified to teach. Technically, I entered the field blindly, knowing nothing about the rate of pay I should expect, hours or even where to look. I just chose schools that were close to home for convenience and sent out letters to see if any were looking for workers. Now, of the four letters I sent, I got two replies (50%, not a bad strikerate for job searching!) and took on both jobs as it was experience.

In hindsight I realise how blessed I am to have gotten the two positions and how one complements the other. All I really needed was a place to take me on, teach me how to teach others and hopefully help me out with getting a piece of paper to say I had done the study to be able to teach.

What I ended up with was one place where I was expected to do general stable duties and in return, got paid, got to view other's teaching, I'm getting three riding lessons a week to improve my riding and also give me one on one with instructor's teaching and I've got a place to keep my horse at no extra charge. Talk about benefits! At the other school, I am being paid to teach after being under training with other instructors and they are also providing the qualified assessors to mark off my capabilities and teach me so I can get the piece of paper I desire.

If you have been in a field awhile, I encourage you to find out from others why they are staying at a particular job. Do they get benefits?

I have friends in the stud industry who each get different benefits:
- One has literacy problems and on top of being paid to work with horses and working on a stud that could place her in four different countries around the world, they are paying for her to have classes to improve her literacy.
- Another works on a smaller stud where she is given access to all areas of stud work, gaining experience at anything and everything. She also gets a rather nice bonus around Christmas time each year.
- Where I work during the season I am provided with accomodation at no charge which means my only expenses are fuel and food (and I live at work, so there's not too many travelling costs) and my horse is allowed to stay where I work also, an added bonus at no extra cost to me.

On a stud situation or a family run riding property that shows constantly, it is often common for accomodation to be provided. Why not consider adding this to your list of requirements when job hunting? It could save you a lot on rent, especially in an environment where the hours can be many and the rate low.

'You Know You're A Horse Person When... you pull a $17,000 horse trailer with a $1,000 pick-up truck. '

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