My journey with AA Driving School

AA Driving Instructor Nelson

Why did you change lanes to become a driving instructor?

I used to work as a testing officer. As my job was to assess people, I was doing something important but I didn’t feel like I was helping them, I was not coaching or instructing the drivers. I saw people making the same mistakes, again and again, some of them critical safety errors.

I could not simply sit in the passenger seat with a clipboard, I needed to do something. And I decided to become a driving instructor. As an instructor I can guide people, step by step, make them safe drivers.


How did you decide to ride with AA Driving School?

A colleague introduced me to AA Driving School. At the time he was an AA Driving Instructor. He knew what I wanted to do and recommended that I apply to join the network.

AA Driving School is the largest in the country, they have good support for the instructors, good training as well. I though it was a good place to become a driving instructor.


What drives you as a driving instructor?

I want to teach new drivers the skills they need. It’s not just about going through a checklist, it’s not just about passing a test. When you drive the right way, you use less petrol, you save money.

When you are fully aware you avoid minor accidents which become major hassles. With the right skills you keep yourself safe and keep your passengers safe.


Tell us about the area you work in.

I love the area around Nelson. I moved here from Auckland and I am enjoying the change of scenery. The beautiful views make for great driving and there are still many places I need to discover.

This is not a big city with public transport, so you really need a licence and a car to go about your daily business and make the most of the area.


What is the key to being a great driving instructor?

Teaching students the skills they need to be great drivers, that is the most important. But to do that you need patience. Some students are very nervous at the beginning, especially new drivers. It’s a new car, new situation, new person, there is a lot to process.

By being patient and communicating well, you can get over these barriers. With new drivers like high school students, whenever I can, I have a chat with the parents before the lesson. That helps the students relax and focus on learning the essential for driving.


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