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Train Like You Listen: A New L&D podcast


Welcome back and happy new year!

In 2020, we’ve decided to mix things up a bit. You’ll still find two posts each week, but now on Mondays, you’ll find our new podcast – a short audio clip offering insights and bite-sized nuggets on trends, cool tools and tips for L&D professionals. Our first episode explains a little more about what it is and offers some thoughts around the best piece of career advice we’ve received as L&D professionals.

Give it a listen and let us know what advice helped you become more successful as an L&D professional in the comment section below!

Heather Snyder: Hello and welcome to the Train Like You Listen podcast, a weekly short podcast about learning and development. We are the team who bring you the Train Like a Champion blog, and we’re expanding by bringing you this new weekly podcast. In the spirit of what we intend to be short podcasts, we’ll keep our intros brief.

6-Word Introduction

Heather Snyder: In fact, we’ll pull out one of our classic ice breaking activities and we’ll introduce ourselves with a six-word memoir. Six words I can use to describe myself today are “computer geek who loves to learn”. 

Brian Washburn: Hello, everyone. I’m Brian Washburn and a six-word memoir that sums me up today would be “retired mascot training for twenty years”.

Heather Snyder: This week is the first of this series and we thought we’d take this opportunity to discuss some of the goals of this podcast. So Brian, why are we calling this Train Like You Listen?

Why the Name “Train Like You Listen”?

Brian Washburn: You know, Train Like You Listen is a play off of our blog, Train Like a Champion. And really when it comes to Train Like You Listen it can be taken a couple of different ways. First of all, you could say, you know, a good trainer really is somebody who is a good listener. And so whether they’re listening to their organization and their organization’s needs or the needs of the learners and what they’re hearing coming up during a training. It could also simply be very egocentric for us, you know, Train Like You Listen to the amazing things that you’re learning from this podcast or other things that you may hear in the industry. 

What Kind of Podcast is “Train Like You Listen”?

Heather Snyder: The intent of these podcasts are to be short. 

Brian Washburn: One of the things about these podcasts and why we chose to do them is really people learn from– through different media. And so we’ve been writing the blog as you know, Heather, for a few years, and now we’re going to try, you know, a different media. Listening to the radio, there’s all sorts of commercials about podcasts, and we wanted to come into this media and see how it worked. And what we’re trying to do is to keep these a little bit on the shorter side of things. It’s part of our brand with Endurance Learning and Train Like a Champion. We try to keep the blog posts short and we’ll try to keep these podcasts, you know, somewhere between five and seven minutes so that people can get what they need and then get on with their day.

Heather Snyder: Yes, and they will be similar to the Train Like a Champion blog. They will have tips and tricks and stories and interviews and question-and-answer sessions in that quick five to seven minute format. 

Brian Washburn: Do we have a topic for today? 

Heather Snyder: Yes, we do. Today’s topic is what is the best piece of training advice you ever received that shaped your training career?

What Is The Best Piece of Training Advice You Have Ever Received?

Brian Washburn: That is an interesting question. I think for me the best piece of advice that I got– actually it was, it didn’t have anything to do with instructional design. It was really around finding your champion within the organization. You can be the best instructional designer. You can design super engaging materials. You can build just these super fantastic training modules. But if the rest of the organization doesn’t buy into what you’re designing, then oftentimes it’ll fizzle. It’ll fall on deaf ears. So finding other people outside of the training world, outside of HR, sometimes in Operations, sometimes in Administration, sometimes at the Executive level, who can really be the champion for what it is that you’re trying to do with the organization and how you’re able to solve problems for the organization has been probably the best piece of advice I’ve gotten. And it’s been what’s helped me to be successful in growing organizations. 

How about you, Heather, what’s the best piece of advice that you’ve ever gotten that’s really shaped your career?

Heather Snyder: It’s really been learning how to practice, learning how to practice my skills, learning to practice on my own, working remotely, just standing in front of a mirror and practicing. And then expanding that by recording myself. We live in a digital age where you can record yourself on a phone, record yourself in front of your webcam and then review it. And then practice in front of people, anyone, your kids, your husband, your friends and family that can help you and give you feedback. I find that practice and feedback to be a really great way to hone in skills.

Brian Washburn: You’re saying it’s a great way. Do you actually like doing that? Do you like seeing it? For me, I know when I see people– when I see myself on camera or when I hear my voice, I don’t even want to listen to this podcast. Its my own voice. What does it feel like to record yourself? 

Heather Snyder: It’s terrifying, but it’s one of the best ways to give yourself that feedback, right? You have to know that that’s what you look like, and that’s what you sound like. And it will help you once you can remove some of that ego and really push yourself forward. It is extremely helpful. 

Brian Washburn: It makes sense. So one of our more common activities when we’re working with people, whether it’s sales skills or customer service or things like that, is to video them and have them review tape of themselves. And I guess if we’re asking other people to do it, it might be good for us to do it ourselves. 

Get To Know The Team Behind Train Like You Listen

Brian Washburn: Why don’t we end with just a quick speed round for today and see what kind of answers we can come up with in lightning quick fashion?

Heather Snyder: Sounds great. 

Brian Washburn: So Heather, what is your go-to book that you’d recommend? 

Heather Snyder: As an e-learning developer and designer. I love the Multimedia Learning by Richard Eaton Mayer. How about you?

Brian Washburn: For me it’s– and I’m more on the classroom side of things. So Learning to Listen, Learning to Teach by Jane Vella goes into dialogue education, which is really what we build a lot of our training on.

What is your favorite pre-training food?

Heather Snyder: Can I say coffee? Does that count? 

Brian Washburn: I think that if it gets you going, it counts. For me, I would say it’s fruit, not the gross melon that you get on a lot of continental breakfasts, but I’m talking like berries and stuff like that. I can’t have a heavy breakfast before training.

How about the one piece of training tech you can’t live without? 

Heather Snyder: I use Camtasia very frequently, not only to do video work, but I also use it for audio editing. I spend a lot of time in Camtasia. How about you? 

Brian Washburn: That is so fascinating. Again, you went e-learning inside, I’m going classroom side and it’s really the PowerPoint remote. I like to be able to walk around the classroom and advance the slides as I’m– from anywhere so I need that. 

Heather Snyder: It’s interesting how we’re on two different, very different sides of the training world that way. 

Brian Washburn: That’s what makes us a great team. 

Heather Snyder: Alright, well we have a lot of episodes lined up for you to look forward to, and here are a few highlights you can expect from the Train Like You Listen podcast.

Brian Washburn: So I think one of the things that would be interesting to take a look at in the coming weeks is the ATD State of the Industry Report for 2019 / 2020, and some reactions to that. 

Heather Snyder: We’ll also be discussing some cool tools that we love. 

Brian Washburn: We’ll always take questions. So maybe we’ll even put in a segment about “Ask a Trainer” if we start to get some good questions.

Heather Snyder: Just to give you an idea of what’s coming up next week, we’ll be discussing competitive games vs. cooperative games. 

Brian Washburn: That’s going to be a fun one. And who do we have with us next week? 

Heather Snyder: Lauren Westcott is another member of the Endurance Learning team, and she knows a lot about cooperative gaming.  And she’ll be discussing that with us. 

Brian Washburn: I’m excited to hear what other people want to hear from the podcast. And so if there are some topics or questions that you have for us, go find us on Twitter @train_champion, or go ahead and leave us a comment down below in the Train Like a Champion blog.

This week’s podcast is sponsored by Soapbox.  Sign up today for a free demo.

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