Seek out recommendations
This is probably one of the easiest and most effective ways of seeking out that perfect match. Ask friends and family for their recommendations - did they have a good experience when they learned to drive? Do you own research. Use Facebook and Google reviews to see what others have said about their experiences. Find out if they have experience of teaching those with specific needs if this is something that would help you.
Don't base your decision on price
It is important that you find an instructor who can help you achieve your goals in an efficient and professional way. It can be false economy going for the cheapest option as you could pay more in the longer term. Work out what the average hourly rate is in your area and see for yourself what works for you.
Be wary of offers that seem too good to be true. If an instructor has little work, compare those to instructors who cannot accommodate you straight away. Would you be happy to wait a few weeks for a slot to become available?
Ask any questions you may have
If you have any questions get in contact with them. If there is anything you'd like to know before you commit to lessons, find out now. Most instructors will welcome this and will provide all of the information you need before booking you in for your first driving lesson.
Check their qualifications and commitment to professional development
You can check to see if a driving instructor is registered with the DVSA here. Ask them if they have any additional qualifications which may be of interest to you.
Check their availability works for you
Do you need to book lessons at specific times? Check to see if they can accommodate this. Do you need lessons on a Sunday afternoon? Are they willing to work evenings?
Get a feel for their approach
If you're unsure about whether you'll get on with your chosen instructor, ask to meet them first. Have a chat with them. Consider booking a driving lesson without obligation of booking further lessons if you don't feel its right for you. Don't be afraid to move on if their coaching style does not suit you.
Don't read too much into the figures
It is important to remember everyone learns at their own pace and there's no one size fits all. I hear a lot of people say that their driving instructor "has a very high pass rate" but what does this mean? We all have passes, we all have fails. It happens. According to the DVSA, the national pass rate is 47.5% so if you must, use this as a more realistic figure of how well a driving instructor is performing. Better still, ignore the figures and strive to find a driving instructor who will work with you to become a safe and competent driver.