Linda F. Willing
P.O. Box 148
Grand Lake, CO
Training Tip Archives
The Business and Legal Report's Daily Advisor offers the following four step plan for effective training:
End on Time
Starting and ending training sessions on time is respectful not only to those who make an effort to be punctual, but also to any trainer who follows you in use of the space. If participants want to talk informally at the end of the class and another instructor is waiting to set up or workers are ready to clean the room, show consideration by moving the conversation to the hallway or other location.
When designing and publicizing a workshop or class, be very specific about what that class will involve. Participants should be clear about how long the class will last, whether the class will be hands-on or lecture only, and how many people are likely to attend. The topic of the class should also be clearly defined with learning objectives stated.
Your Best Defense
Good training is one of the best defenses against harassment or discrimination lawsuits. Having a valid policy and providing regular, quality training can go a long way to prove that an employer took all action possible to prevent and correct any inappropriate behavior. Investigators of harassment claims emphasize that training must be provided for all employees, not just supervisors.
Source: HR Daily Advisor, June 27, 2007
When doing training, you want the audience to remember the message, not the fact that you had a stain on your shirt or food in your teeth. Check your appearance before welcoming your students, and when in doubt, dress up versus down compared to your audience. A clean, pressed dress uniform or business suit never looks bad and such professional presentation can only enhance the content of your program.
You can build buy-in for your presentation before it even starts by personally greeting participants as they arrive. Simply introducing yourself, shaking hands, and making eye contact go a long way toward breaking down barriers, especially when dealing with difficult training topics. Always make an effort to introduce yourself to those who choose to sit in the last row, and don't ignore those people with whom you are already acquainted.
When Less is More
Some trainers want to tell you absolutely everything they know on a particular subject. While all presentations should be substantial in their content, it is possible to give too much information. Remember that your audience may not have the same background or interest in the subject that you do. It is more important to accurately assess the participants' needs and meet them than it is to try to appear as the expert by flooding them with too much information that they cannot comprehend or retain.
Teaching to the Test
When preparing a group for a test to get recertified in some area, it may be tempting to "teach to the test" rather than focusing on content information. Although some familiarity with how the test is structured is important, this narrow approach is a bad idea for two reasons. One is that the format of the test could change. The other is that the desired goal should be retention of the actual information, not just success on one test. If you want your people to really be confident about what they know, stick with content and let the rest take care of itself.