If you have never led a training session then you’re in the right place! Get ahead of the game and plan a successful training day that goes off without a hitch. Why not start by reading through our top tips on how to take a training session to make sure things run smoothly? Let’s get going.
Every successful company can see the benefits of hosting a training day. They’re good for boosting morale, re-focusing your team as well as teaching them new skills which they can implement in their day-to-day work.
You want to make sure your training day is as effective as possible and that your team come away from it feeling like they’ve learnt something valuable.
Read our top tips for how to take a training session here.
1. The agenda for your training day
First up, plan your agenda. Make an assessment of your training day needs – what are the overall goals and what tasks and activities can you include to achieve them?
Once you’ve established this – be sure to share the information will all your attendees so that everyone is clear on what they will be doing and why.
Explain all the key points you want to cover, the schedule for the day as well as all the goals, tasks and activities of the training day.
If all your attendees are kept in the loop it will save time as already be familiar with the agenda on the day – you can jump straight into the first activities or tasks on your list.
The best way to break down your training day is to first establish the key points you want to present to your attendees.
Once you have these topics, work out how long you want to spend on each key point – dependant on the time of the training day of course. Some sections may take longer than others to teach your attendees so you can designate a longer time on that section of the day.
2. Hands on Training
When thinking about how to take a training session, you want to make sure that it’s as engaging as possible to achieve the best results. The easiest way to do this is to adopt a hands on training technique.
Ultimately, there are three categories you can put your attendees into – audio, visual and kinaesthetic learners. You probably won’t know what type your attendees fall into so try to cater for everyone with different training materials that incorporate the different learner types.
- Visual learners prefer using pictures and images to help them absorb information. Take some time in the lead up to the training day to design and create engaging training materials – something a bit more exciting than your standard PowerPoint presentation. Don’t be too text heavy and try to inject some humour and lightheartedness where possible.
- For kinesthetic learners include fun activities and creative presentations which will make the training day a lot more interactive. Mini quizzes are also a great way to not only test if your attendees are paying attention but to also get everyone involved. It’s best to do this in groups so that people don’t feel like they’re in an exam. Most people learn by recapping what they’ve been taught in an interactive way so this is a great opportunity to establish how effective your training technique is.
Have fun with creating your training materials – if you enjoyed the development process it will translate during the training itself. If you think your materials could do with a re-vamp then the likelihood is so will your attendees.
And don’t forget: there is power in simplicity. Don’t overwhelm your Guests with a large amount of information all in one go. Break everything down to make the training content easier to absorb and therefore more effective.
3. Time Management
When asked how to take a training session, time management should be a priority.
If you’ve created a schedule try to follow it as closely as possible and keep track of the time throughout the day. Think about how you want to break up the day – some concepts or skills will need more time allocated to them than others. So identify which skills or tasks you want to spend some extra time on.
Also remember to schedule in frequent breaks. We recommend giving two short breaks in the morning and the afternoon as well as one longer break in the middle of the day for lunch.
This will make your attendees more engaged and productive during the working hours of the training day as they will come back from a break feeling refreshed and ready for the next task.
As with any event you want to get as much feedback as possible. This is even more important when it comes to training. So when considering how to take a training session make sure feedback is included.
Try to analyse and keep notes of the session as you go along and ask for feedback at the end of each task or activity. Then ask for overall feedback the next day to see what attendees thought of the overall session.
This will give you both real-time feedback as well as reflective reasoning which James Morgan talks about in his blog on interactive ways to get feedback for The Event Manager Blog. Morgan writes, ‘The advantage of real-time feedback is that it can often capture the ‘buzz’ moments at your event, indicating the extent of the success of the experience you have designed.’
It’s a good idea to get feedback during the training day itself as this is when your attendees will be most involved with the events that are happening. James continues that ‘this differs to reflective reasoning which is grounded in the activity of remembering the result of the activity’.
This isn’t always as effective feedback as real-time as it will often sway towards the negatives of your training day rather than the positives – as most attendees will feel like they should be offering constructive criticism after reflecting on the training day. It’s best to collect both kinds of feedback in order to get an overall review of the day!
There are plenty of different ways to do this. For real-time feedback it’s probably best to have face-to-face conversations with your attendees and just ask them to give a brief reflection on the activities or tasks they’ve just completed.
For reflective feedback after the training day you can send round an electronic feedback form for your attendees to fill out.
Get them to give number ratings for each task and then some small suggestions on how they think it could have been improved. Doing this electronically will make people a lot more willing to give feedback as it’s quick and easy for them to fill out.
You also want to know if your attendees are implementing what they have learnt and their new skills. So organise a follow up session with all the attendees to see how they applied what they had learnt to their working day.
So, there you have it – our top tips on how to take a training session. If you’d like a helping hand finding a venue for your event, you can get in touch with our Account Management team on firstname.lastname@example.org. They will turn your brief into a brilliant Space for free!