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Six Resources for Trainers and Presenters to Check Out Today.

There are tons of training materials out there.  So, why is there still so much bad training?  Perhaps people just latch on to what’s worked in the past.  Perhaps presenters aren’t sure where to look for new ideas.  Here are six training resources to help spark some new ideas.

1. Visual Nirvana

Readers of this blog know that I’m not a fan of PowerPoint.  I just think too many presenters spend way too much time putting together a series of text- and data-filled slides on standard PowerPoint templates and they call it a training program.  I’m not totally anti-PowerPoint, I just wish it would be used better.  Take a look at an example of what a PowerPoint presentation can be.

2. Large Group Interaction

For those fortunate enough to be asked to present to a big group – say 40 or 100 or maybe even 1,000 or more –check out a free (or low cost… rates vary depending on group size) service that enables the audience to use their mobile phones to interact with you.  Yes, some conferences use Twitter to do this, but a) watching a steady stream of tweets while someone is trying to speak is distracting and b) with this service you can ask for short answer responses and poll-based feedback.

3. Action Plans

End-of-training action plans are quite common.  Following up on progress is much less common.  Using 3-part NCR carbonless paper for action plans may offer some help when it comes to post-training accountability.  Using this specialty paper allows for an action plan to be produced in triplicate – one copy for the trainee, one copy for the trainee’s manager and one copy for you (if you’ll never see the trainee again, perhaps you can mail that final copy to the trainee as a reminder  45 days after the training is completed).  Why copies for the trainee, the trainer and the manager?  See resource #4.

4. The 100th Monkey Story

The trainer and the trainee’s manager are essential for on-the-job transfer of skills.  In July 2011, Bob Pike wrote a column about change, offering a story that detailed a specific tipping point when an idea is no longer avant-garde or radical and becomes accepted as a good, sound practice.  More importantly, this article sums up years of research pointing to the impact of a trainee’s manager and the trainer in determining whether or not training concepts will ever be used on the job.  Some serious food for thought when you’re planning a training program.  And speaking of planning a training program…

5. What’s In It For Me?

In order for training to be useful, it needs to be planned to meet the needs of the audience.  A connection between the trainees’ job competencies and the learning intervention helps to offer an answer to the question “what’s in it for me?”  Lominger core competency resources are the industry standard when it comes to off-the-shelf resources for competency modeling.

6. Training Double-Check Checklist

Wondering if your training session has what it takes to engage your learners?  Download a training preparation checklist that I have developed to compare your lesson plan with 11 core elements for effective presentations.

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