There is certainly no lack of verbiage in the day trading forums about unhappy and unprofitable experiences with a variety of trading educators. I think, by and large, that this sort of frank discussion is good for our business. There are a number of very talented e-mini trading educators currently working, and a group of considerable size who I would classify as “substandard.”
So how do you choose a superior e-mini trading program?
I think the most important question anyone considering trading for a career must ask is whether or not they have the commitment to stay the course. It is not unusual for some new e-mini traders to trade for a month or two and realize that trading involves much more than natural intuition and good luck. The realization that trading involves a great deal of study and hard work can be daunting, as many new traders enter the markets with the notion that they have found an ATM machine. It doesn’t work that way.
It’s important that you feel comfortable with your trading educator. Many educators, like me, devote time to work with their students on a one-on-one basis. Without proper rapport between me and my student it tends to impede both meaningful conversation and proper communication. To my way of thinking, you should spend a good amount of time talking with your potential mentor about trading style, his or her teaching style, and try to get an overall feel as to whether you and your potential teacher have personalities that will work well together over the long haul.
It’s not easy to get a good read on another individual over the telephone, or even on a video Skype call; so you need to be prepared with logical questions that are pertinent to your particular learning scenario. Some of the questions my covered topics like:
- What is the history and success rate of the particular trading style the instructor plans for you to learn? What is this trading style based upon
- What is the history and success rate of the instructor? What are his or her strengths? What are his or her weaknesses
- Referrals are a wonderful way to learn more about a potential instructor. If the educator will provide referrals, ask them specific and to the point questions.
- Take note of how you feel when you are discussing matters related to enrolling in the educators program. Do the instructor’s answers make you feel comfortable or manipulated
- Forums are an excellent place to solicit opinions about specific e-mini trading programs. Of course, you need to filter out individuals who are blatantly promoting a program.
The next question you have to ask yourself as a student is: Am I willing to put the time and effort needed for success into this endeavor? If there is any hesitation when answering this question, you might seriously consider whether this is the right time to begin a career in trading. Initially, I would think you would devote at least an hour a night to study and practice. That number should gradually decrease as you become more experienced and know a specific system to trading e-mini contracts. Count on at least two months before you will be ready to trade one contract. E-mini trading can be a very lucrative business, but it is not a “get rich quick” scheme, but an organized and methodical process to be learned.
Once you have decided upon an educator, affirmed your dedication to becoming an e-mini trader, there are a variety of details related to setting up a simulated trading account with the group of brokers (usually two or three firms) with whom your instructor has had positive trading relationships.