Sunday March 26, 2017
Ten Techniques To Enhance Training
by Speaking Tips | March 29, 2004
The quality of a training session can frequently be greatly improved if the trainer makes
use of a few simple techniques to enhance their presentation. Here are ten techniques to
help you turn your next training session into a memorable learning experience for your
trainees and one in which the transfer of information is two-way rather than one-way.
These techniques can be used in combination or alone as required.
Overview: Use an overview at the beginning of the session to establish focus and
paint the big pictire. An overview orients the trainees to the learning context and
assists them in grasping the relationship between the organization, the training and
themselves. A good overview should answer the questions: Where are we going with this
training? How does it relate to my work? Who else is getting trained? What's in it for me?
Objectives: Objectives are the specific skills, knowledge or attitudes to be
taught during the training. These need to be identified (and where possible demonstrated)
at the beginning of the training. You should be as specific as possible particularly when
training is on a complex operation involving multiple skills.
Metaphors: Metaphors and analogies often can be used in conjunction with props.
They provide a link between the know and the unknown. In training, there is both factual
and conceptual information to impart to the trainees. Metaphors can be used to illuminate
both types of information.
Props: Props are a way of thinking metaphorically. They can be toys, gizmos,
costumes or tools that are generally recognized. Children's construction toys (Lego, for
example) are great because they can quickly demonstrate how parts relate to the whole. As
an added bonus, they are light, portable, and familiar.
Stories: People remember stories and anecdotes, particularly if the stories you
use come from your own personal experience or are of experiences and situations that
everyone present can relate to. Stories are an excellent way to reinforce and explain
the Overview and combine easily with several of the other techniques such as metaphors
and props lending a coordinated feel to the training.
Handouts: Training requires handouts to help learners reinforce and apply the
newly acquired skills and knowledge. Training handouts can take the form of job aids,
reference tools, charts, diagrams, manuals, or directories and can be posted on a Web
site or on the organization's intranet.
Color: Color has impact on reading, comprehension, learning and promoting ideas.
Include it in your training design. For instance, handouts are improved if they are color
Acronyms: Mnemonic devices like acronyms help people remember key points and
sequences. Everyone has used them in school and some have even worked themselves into the
English language as words. Acronyms should be short like "SMART" objectives (specific,
measurable, achievable, realistic and time bound) and easy to remember.
Tempo: Vary the pace of the training at least every 20 minutes. Intersperse, mix
and alternate different training techniques. The kinds of activcites you might use
include: (a) passive and interactive activities, (b) individual and group activities, (c)
participatory and reflective activities, and (d) leader-directed and learner-directed
activities. Humor can be a great way to facilitate a change in tempo.
Enthusiasm: If you are not excited by your material, how can you expect your trainees
to become enthused by it? Sometimes trainers lack passion because they try to cover too
much at once. Try using the facts, concepts, principles, processes and procedures model.
Consider the handout for the facts and procedures, metaphors for the concepts, and then
release your passion on the principles and processes which excite you or you would not be
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