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Train the Trainer Tips - What Makes a Great Trainer

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Written by Andy Trainer– Mon 05 Oct 2009

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Train the Trainer - Getting it Right

There are many great Train the Trainer resources out there that tell you what you need to do to be a great trainer. Learning from your mistakes is one piece of advice you may have read, but how many resources tell you what mistakes there are to be made before you make them, or help trainers to do things differently? Read our 8 top tips for being a great trainer...

What a great trainer should avoid:

  1. Too little planning. You may not be given the necessary information about the delegates before a course; it's no good blaming the provider. If you want information, send them a question sheet (not too long) to find out what your delegates need. If this fails for any reason make sure you have the right questions ready to ask your learners in your intro time. Also if this is the case you should have material prepared for the more able students in case the group is very mixed in ability.
  2. Do not lecture. Let’s have that one again DO NOT LECTURE, this is the least effective teaching style on the planet. PowerPoint comes in close second!
  3. Do not forget that your delegates should always be participants in the learning process. Make your delegates DO, make them ASK, make them TALK.
  4. Do not put on a video. A very short excerpt might be apt or entertaining. While videos can be well done and helpful learning tools, delegates need to ask question, think for themselves and develop solutions to their problems.
  5. Do not fail to make sure that the training we're presenting is clearly related to the problems our participants face. Do some homework, what is their organisation like? What do they do? What do they want to be able to do at the end of the training that they couldn't do before?
  6. Too much theory. Relevant practise is what learners need. You need to find real examples to use, things that your delegates can relate to. This could take some research but the more prepared you are the more relevant your training becomes.
  7. Do not forget to help delegates relate the subject to their jobs. As trainers we may be making the assumption that our participants will connect classroom learning to their work, however trainers should help delegates to make the connections as part of their training. What you teach or facilitate must be explicitly connected to work problems if you expect transfer of learning to take place.
  8. Don't make excuses when you get bad feedback. Trainers can learn too, don't take criticism badly use it to learn.

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