A ski instructor job in Verbier is maybe more attractive than ‘traditional’ careers! And like every worthwhile ‘career’, ski instructor recruitment is incredibly competitive.
Landing your first ski instructor job in Verbier or any other ski resort is a bit like starting any career. The start isn’t easy and can sometimes be disheartening. You send out your CV and covering letter to every ski school in town. And they don’t even reply with a polite ‘no thank you’!
The Verbier winter ski season last five months of the year. This poses the question what do ski instructors in the summer! Some instructors migrate to the southern hemispheres to find more snow and work. Other instructors have complimentary summer careers. And pretty much every ski instructor returns season after season. So, the number of positions open to freshly qualified instructors is very limited.
If you’re looking to apply for a ski instructor job this winter in Verbier? You will need to stand out in a very competitive job market. This is even more tricky in the era of BREXIT. Below are a few of my pointers and advice from my 30 plus years of experience in the ski industry. It may or may not give you the ‘edge’ in your search for a ski instructor position in Verbier.
BREXIT is causing a big uncertainty within ski schools in Verbier. A large chunk of the instructors working seasonally in Verbier are British. Switzerland has bi-lateral agreements with the EU relating to the freedom of movement of European citizens. Once the UK leaves the EU the rights of British ski instructors is a bit of a ‘known unknown!’. The Swiss government has released various documents regarding BREXIT and their position relating to UK citizens post BREXIT. In the case of a ‘no deal BREXIT’ and even with a ‘deal’ obtaining work permits for non-EU ski instructors could become very tricky. Some ski schools are advising their long serving British instructors, if possible, to obtain an EU passport. If you have an EU passport you could be in with a better chance this winter! Only time will tell what BREXIT really means for ski teaching in the Alps
Don’t call me dude
Formalities and pleasantries to warm up the tone of your first contact with a ski school are a must. In your cover letter try to avoid telling everyone about ‘how passionate’ you are about skiing. You maybe, the hottest skier this side of Luton…. But you are hopefully being employed to be great at teaching skiing whilst giving your clients the best days on the mountain. Remember it’s not about your skiing its about the ski school’s clients and the service you can provide for their clients.
Don’t get your Mum to call the ski school asking for a job for you!
Obvious really isn’t it! But every year ski schools receive phone calls or emails from mothers looking to find their offspring a job. Seriously, as a ski instructor, you will be dealing with the public every day. If you’ve not the confidence to call the ski school to ask for a job yourself, how will you manage with your first clients? This is something you should be doing yourself!
Do your homework
The best advice I can give is to personalise your application to the company you are applying to. Make sure you have found out the name of the ski school director. Make sure you have a qualification that is relevant to the ski school. There is no point applying to a ski school that specialises in Off Piste if you do not have a qualification to teach Off Piste!
Dress to impress
Don’t roll into a meeting with the ski school director looking like you’ve just got in from the best night out ever! If you want to be taken seriously you really need to look the part. No client is impressed if you look like a dog’s dinner whilst only talking about the ‘sick lines’ you skied yesterday. Have a wash dude… No ski school wants to put you in front of their clients smelling of ‘eau d’hier soir’!
Ski instructor Training Courses
Gap Courses and ISIA training. Many ski schools in Verbier offer ski instructor training courses. Part of all ski instructor training is having professional experience on the mountain. This could be shadowing actual ski lessons, helping with children’s ski groups during high season weeks or helping in with general ski school organisation. And when the course is finished the trainee maybe offered work by the school. ‘Better the devil you know’. The point being is the ski school would rather employ their trainees before looking to recruit outside of their ski school.
Other Work in a Ski Resort
If you’ve not got the cash to splash on a Gap Year course and want to become a ski instructor. Then finding a job in the resort of your choice can be a good lead into meeting a ski school. Working as a dishwasher in hotel and working on your skiing whilst networking the resort is a good technique to finding a ski instructor job. In the past before the existence of the Gap Year ski instructor this was the route many took to become a ski instructor. It is also a good route to becoming a bit more of a rounded personality and ultimately a better instructor!
CV and Covering Letter
Make sure you CV is relevant to ski teaching. High up on your CV should be work which show you have customer service experience. Your ski instructor qualifications and ski teaching experience. A long list of A Levels and other educational exam passes is great. But way more important is showing that you have great interpersonal skills and able to communicate and serve clients.
Now you’ve got my low down on finding a ski instructor job in Verbier. All that is left is a bit of luck! Ski instructor jobs are limited, especially if you are newly qualified and with little experience. Getting a ski instructor job can be down to being in the right place at the right time with the right qualifications.
If you’ve got this far you may have noticed I am an independent ski instructor in Verbier. I am not in a position to offer you a job. However I do wish you the best of luck finding a ski instructor job in Verbier.