Event Date: 09/09/2015 (3:00 pm EDT - 4:00 pm EDT)
SARAH SHAFER: Hello everyone and welcome to today’s webinar, The Trainers Handbook Creative And Active Training Techniques, hosted by HRDQU and presented by Dr. Karen Lawson. Today’s webinar will last about one hour. If you have any questions you can always type them into the questions box. We will be answering these questions as they come and live at the end of the presentation or as a follow-up by email. My name is Sarah Shafer and I will moderate today’s webinar.
Dr. Lawson is an international consultant, executive coach, speaker, and author. In her work with Fortune 500 companies as well as small businesses she works with leaders at all levels.
Welcome, Karen, and thank you for joining us today.
KAREN LAWSON: Thanks, Sarah, I’m excited to do this. It’s one of my very favorite topics so, I’m really excited. So, welcome everybody. So, today we are going to address the following topics: Learning outcomes. We are going to explain the concept, principles, strategies and techniques of active training. Secondly were going to talk about how to use active training methods to increase retention, build understanding, and improve skills. Third, adapt active training techniques to any course content, and fourth use creative approaches to motivate and energize the group.
Specifically our topics include understanding active training, you’re going to experience 10 active training alternatives to lecture, you will pick up some suggestions for improving a lecture if you must, and, finally using some creativity in the classroom. So, although you are going to have the opportunity to experience some of these active training techniques, due to our limited time together I want to give you as much information as possible, and so, therefore, I will not spend as much time on them as I would normally if we were in a classroom situation
SARAH: … The poll question.
KAREN: Are there it is. First one, Instant Assessment. Now, before we actually poll, let me explain, in a classroom situation everyone would’ve been given a stack of A, B, C, D cards, different colors, and on each card there is written an A,B,C, or D, so I asked people, three or four open-ended questions like this and I asked them to indicate their answers by holding up the appropriate card which is really kind of neat because you get to see all this array of cards and all the ABCD’s out there. So, in this case we don’t have that opportunity to do that but we will do it as a poll. So, your main motivation for attending this webinar is A. I have nothing else to do; B. To take a break from work; C. To learn how to enhance your training skills; D. My boss made me.
So, let’s see the polls here.
Okay, great answers. 99% are here to learn how to enhance your training, excellent! Okay, let’s go to the next one. I believe that the primary role of a trainer is to A. impart knowledge; B. facilitate learning; C. stimulate thinking; D. entertain.
I can tell people are still thinking here. Okay, let’s show the results. 72% say facilitate learning. Now again, this is very interesting because as I talk to people after they’ve done this, they have a lot of concerns, it’s a combination of all of them, but, we won’t get into that right now. And the last one in our polling our instant assessment is, the biggest challenge I face as a trainer is A. keeping the session on track; B. getting people to participate; C. ensuring people apply what they’ve learned or D. I have no challenges. Very interesting. 74% of you say ensuring people apply what they’ve learned. 2% have no challenges. I want to meet those people. I still have challenges. That’s great. The interesting thing about this question is that most people say they have trouble ensuring people apply what they’ve learned. But let me just say right off the bat you can’t ensure people apply what they’ve learned. You know why? Because you can’t follow people around. The people have responsibility to make sure they apply what they have learned of course are the learners themselves but also their managers. You give them the resources. You give them the training, but in essence they have a responsibility as do their managers. So, this is the first active training activity I have people experience because it gets them involved right from the start. So, before you get into experiencing some other ones let me just give you a little bit of the background in terms of what active training is and is not for those of you who may not be familiar with it.
So, first of all, active training is the instructional use of small groups so participants work together to maximize their own and each other’s learning. And, it’s based on two assumptions: First of all, learning is an active endeavor. In other words, people learn by doing, not by being told. And secondly, people learn in different ways. And I’m sure most of you already know that about different learning styles which we are certainly not getting into today. And, active training clearly reflects cooperative learning principles and strategies such as learning, teaching, and motivational theories for example. It also uses structured learning groups a moderate level of content and this is something that people get concerned about because as they say will we can’t use as much content, well you have to make a decision between whether people need to know versus nice to know. It also ensures a balance among cognitive behavioral, and effective learning domains. And it does ensure a high level of participation which, I believe is critical for any learning to take place. Now, some other strategies, it creates interdependence among group members, which is really critical. Uses a minimal amount of lecture which some people have difficulty with. Peer teaching, a variety of methods and builds on and overlaps concepts and skills learned earlier. It keeps building on things. It’s interactive. And it does use real-life situations. So, with all that background let’s get right into the other nine active training alternatives to lecture. And I’m not certainly going to read these to you because you do have those. But the first one I want you to in essence understand and, you’re going to have an opportunity to experience it called active knowledge sharing. I want to emphasize these activities are in place of a lecture. They are not in addition to. In active knowledge sharing its purpose is to teach the facts or figures by asking participants to guess or speculate as to the correct information. So, in other words you would prepare slides or handouts about particular factual information and what works best would be numbers or percentages or something along that nature. And, you would ask people to work together in twos or threes because once again we want to use cooperative learning techniques. You would show the slide or the handout and you ask people to work together to guess, to speculate on what they think is the correct answer. Then you reconvene the group and you ask each pair or trio to share their response and you share the correct answers. So, for example, I might ask people to say what they think about people will retain what percentage of what they hear, what percentage of what they hear and see, what percentage when they hear, see, and do. So, let’s try that right now. And, if you would put this in the chat box what percentages? If you would put those three percentages, each one of you quickly, what do you think? Hear, hear and see, hear, see, and do? I know are not going to have an opportunity to have everybody put in their answers, but I would love to see what some of you think are the correct answers. Okay, let me give you the correct answers. And move along here. So the answer is people retain 20% of what they hear; 50% of what they hear and see; and 80% of what they hear, see, and do. Now, the interesting thing about this technique is that people are engaged because they want to know did they guess it correctly. So, normally what you would do in lectures is you would put up the old PowerPoint slides and you would give them these numbers. And people really have fun guessing finding out did they get it correctly. So, that’s one technique.
The second active training technique is called pairs matching. And in pairs matching you have what is called this works really great if you have an opportunity to have, let’s say definitions and terminology. Once again you’re going to use this to get people to think. So, you would have a handout like this for example where you might have a terminology on the side, group discussion, charts and graphs, hands-on activities, and, on the other side, you would have visual, print, oral, kinesthetic, interactive and tactile. What you want to do is match those to each other. So once again, I would put people into pairs; you don’t want to do those independently have them work together. Remember you’re introducing new activities and new information. They are going to work together, it doesn’t matter if they don’t know this, they are working together, they are thinking they are using their heads they are talking. And I would ask them what’s the match of the terms on the right-hand side with examples on the left-hand side.
Interestingly the results I’m finding with most people is they generally get them pretty close to being right. A lot of them have difficulty with the difference between hands-on activities and role-plays. But once again, people are engaged because they have fun. They have talked about this. So any time you want to introduce terms and definitions, this is a great way of doing that.
The third and rather interesting technique is called point-counterpoint. The purpose is to stimulate discussion and gain deeper understanding of more complex issues. So you would select an issue that has two or more sides. There’s not a right or wrong, by the way it’s just a different way of looking at things. And it could be somewhat controversial so you would divide your participants into two subgroups if we have two positions and that makes it easier. So let me just use this for example. Let’s say we have 12 people in our class. So we divide the participants into two groups of six and we asked each subgroup to come up with an argument in support of the position that I have given them and I will explain in a minute. They prepare their arguments either for or against their position that they’ve been given and then we reconvene the group a representative from one side presents one argument in favor, that participant calls on the representative from the other side. Now, let me give you an example. Let’s say were doing the train the trainer program. And I put up on the screen as I have here classroom-based training is a thing of the past. So, one group is supposed to prepare arguments that support that statement. On the other side, that group is to prepare arguments that refute that statement. So I give them some time, they prepare their arguments, I pull the group back together and then I say okay, let’s start with the group that supports that. Give us one argument you believe that classroom-based training is a thing of the past. They make a statement. They call on someone from the other side. Now, this is not a debate, so, the other side does not have to address what the first side said. They just call on the other side that side said no, we disagree with that because we believe there is always a reason to have classroom-based training because we think people really need to get together. And then they again call on someone from the other side. This can go back and forth for as long as you want or as many arguments as people come up with now, think about this, and you as a trainer, you are really not doing much of anything. You are merely orchestrating or facilitating process now, again, if we had more time or had an opportunity to have audio, I would actually have us try this out and have people take one side or the other pro and con. Let me give you some examples of how we could do this. If I were doing teams for example, I might say, team meetings are a waste of time. If I am doing a program on leadership, leaders are born, not made. If I’m doing customer service I would have a statement the customer is always right. No matter what the topic, you could find some statement that would generate some really interesting discussion. Know what that does is it gets people to really think. And the other interesting thing is depending upon what side they are on, these folks really have to choose arguments that they don’t really believe in. Then you can debrief it by having a discussion about well, how does that feel when you had to talk about something and take a side that you really didn’t believe in? So does lend itself to really interesting discussion. So, I recommend that you do that.
Now, a fourth active training technique is called group inquiry. Now with group inquiry, its purpose is simply again to get people to think. You want to arouse interest and stimulate questions around a particular desired learning. You want them to delve into subject matter on their own without any prior explanation from the trainer. Again, remember, they are learning new material. So, you would prepare a handout that gives them broad information but doesn’t have any particular detail or explanatory backup material. It could be a chart, a graph, a diagram, anything of that nature. Now, what you would do is ask people to work in pairs or trios. Ask them to study the handout with their partner or partners and try to make sense out of the handout. And as they’re looking at the chart, the graph, the diagram, whatever, you ask them to work with their partner and they would put question marks next to the information they don’t understand. Give them a few minutes however long you want them to take and you could also say to them be prepared to say you think you do know what this means. And then you reconvene the group and answer questions and also ask whatever questions they might have. Again, let me show you how you would use this. Many of you may be familiar with the experiential learning cycle. Once again in a train the trainer situation people who have never experienced this at all I would show them this particular diagram. And ask them to work in pairs. Most of them have never seen this. And say all right, what I want you to do is work in pairs and you’re going to try to figure this out. And, what questions do you have? They work in pairs trying to figure it out and when we reconvene I would say okay, who has a question? And someone might say, well, where does it start? And then I would say well is saying he or she has an answer? And somebody might say well, I think it starts at the experiencing phase. Right, okay. Who else has a question? And, someone might say well I don’t understand what what now what is all about. Okay, I would say as a facilitator okay, who thinks they have an answer? Again, we go through all of this and my job as a facilitator is to clarify, and, once again coordinate, facilitate, clarify as necessary. That’s my job.
Okay, the next one the fifth active training technique is called information search. And this is used for dry boring, heavy material. Not that any of you here on the webinar ever teach dry, boring material right? I would love to see you face-to-face to see if I’m getting any smiles on that one. And what you’re doing with this is to come you may remember when you are in school and you had an open book test or you also had maybe the assignment where you have your textbook and your teacher gave you a worksheet. So this is the adult version of that. So you would prepare questions that are related to the desired learning that they really really really need to know. Remember I talked about to know versus nice to know. So, again, we put people into pairs, take a look now at the procedure and you give them the questions they have the text they have whatever the information is, and they work together in teams, pairs, whatever and they search out the answers. This is really great for compliance material. It’s also great to, for example, with new employee orientation and onboarding. When you have the employee handbook, in many organizations it’s most of the time now is online on the company’s intranet, but somebody who may be remembering the days we just ask new employees to sign if they read the handbook. While this actually makes it go into the handbook whether it’s hard copy or its on the intranet and they have to actually search out the really important pieces of information not to sign that they looked at it. So, let me give you an example again from train the trainer what I will do is they have a handout or that actually have my book the Trainers Handbook and I want them to know some things about visual aids. So they have the Trainers Handbook, the updated edition and I asked them questions such as you should use a flipchart with groups of no more than how many people? You should put no more than how many lines of information on a flipchart page? Now those are just two particular questions out of I probably have about 10. But I just wanted you to experience them, so, let’s just take a moment and if you would type in the chat box what you think the answers are to those two questions. I’ll give you just a minute or two. Okay, let me give you the answers. You should use a flipchart with groups of no more than 25 to 30 people. You should put no more than six lines of information on a flipchart page. So you are searching out the information rather than my giving it to you and that way you’re going to retain it better and also makes it much more interesting and interactive. Again think of things how you could use this. As I said I would use it with new employee orientation, but there are so many other really, really important things that you could use where you want to give them a lot of content but they have to go in and find it themselves.
A sixth particular and creative active training technique is called a learning tournament. Now this is getting some of these activities are getting much more complicated here. The learning tournament, its purpose is to promote learning of a wide variety of facts, concepts, and skills. So for preparation you are going to provide lots of resource material whether it’s handouts or manuals or whatever, you’re going to prepare three sets of questions that test the comprehension of the material. Once again, this is learning new material. This is not something that you have already given them and they are doing review. And I’ll just explain this in a minute in terms of the examples. In terms of the procedure you’re going to divide people into teams of 2 to 8 people. Once again you give them the resource material. You’re going to ask the teams to study the material together. Now you’re going to explain they’re going to have three rounds. You distribute the first set of questions, round one, ask the participants to answer the questions individually, provide the correct answers, then you’re going to ask them to score them give them the correct answers and score them. The members pool their scores and then you’re going to post the team scores. Now, what I want to point out to you here is the cooperative learning technique. They have individual responsibility but they also have team accountability. So, they are gathering their team score. Now, we then go to the next round, round two. They get the same study material but they have new questions. Study, study, study. New questions I’m going to give them, same process. They answer the questions individually. We’re going to grade them. They are going to pool their answers and the scores. Generally I only do three rounds, because after that it gets a bit boring. If you have done your job and if they have done their job, generally, not always, but generally they will find that the scores get better after three rounds. And I generally give them prizes. They have fun. It’s very competitive. They love it. So, let me give you an example using the same content that we just talked about in information search going back to my book, Trainers Handbook, what I would do is give them, they would turn to the book several pages of, using visual aids. And in round one, one question would be give three reasons to use visual aids. The second question is use a flipchart with groups of no more than how many people? The third question would be what’s the best color to use for emphasis? Again, I’m not going to spend time going through these answers right now. So they would answer those questions, then we’re going to go to round two. And in round two the next set of questions would be what is the smallest typeface that should be used? You should put no more than how many lines of information on a flipchart page? And research shows that people were will retain up to how many pieces of information? That would be round two. Now, once again, in the interest of time I’ve only give new questions for two rounds, but, normally I would do three rounds. Now let’s take a look at something I like to call Three for One, which is taking the same content and we are going to I’m going to show you how you can use three different active training techniques to convey the same content without ever lecturing. We use card sort, peer lessons and jigsaw. The first one is card sort. And this is designed to teach material that can be chunked into multiple sections. So anything that you have that can be chunked you can use this for. So, in preparation you would create header cards and descriptor cards. And again, I will give you an example in just a minute. So you would create sub groups of five or six. Each group gets a set of shuffled cards. And then the group has to sort the cards into respective categories. After they have done the sort then you give them an answer sheet showing the correct sort. So, here is my example. I’m sure that many of you are familiar with characteristics of learning styles. So I have header cards: feelers, observers, thinkers, doers. Those will be the header cards. Now I create 16 descriptor cards. One descriptor per card. Four cards per category. And I’m just going to quickly move through these. So, feelers for example I just want to show you the descriptor card for feelers. Feelers would be very people oriented and outgoing, like learning experiences, thrive in unstructured environment, and enjoy working in groups. The next group would be observers. And the observers like to watch and listen, will take their time before participating, like learning experiences that allow them to consider various ideas and opinions, thrive on learning through discovery. The fourth group, thinkers: rely on logic and reason; like to share ideas and concepts; prefer to work independently; like to question and challenge. And finally, the doers: like to be actively involved in the learning process; like opportunities to practice what they learned; like information to be presented clearly and concisely; tend to take charge in group activities and dominate the discussion.
So, again, people are supposed sort the descriptors in the categories and it doesn’t make a difference if they don’t know because they’re working in teams, they are talking about this. Some of them get actually pretty close to getting all the sorts correctly. I don’t think I have ever had a group of people who got them all right, but it’s okay because when I do get them the answer sheet that has the correct sort then we talk about the ones they did not guess correctly, if you will. It helps clarify because, again, they worked in a team environment talking about it, interacting, they’ve had to think about it, and then they have their aha moment when they talk about why it didn’t go the way they thought it was and, oh, now I understand what you’re talking about. So, again, and you same content in terms of learning styles let me show you another way. The next methodology is called peer lessons. Once again, material that is chunked. So, the purpose is the same thing we’ve created, in essence, we haven’t done card sort but we still have the same content piece this time probably I would just have the handout. The answer sheet for example that I had with the cards sort. Everyone gets one of those. Now in terms of the procedure what I would do is create sub groups according to the number of segments or chunks that I have. So, I have four segments, right? For chunks. So, for the sake of discussion, let’s assume we have 16 people. So, I have four groups of four. Each one gets a different chunk of information. In other words one group is going to be feelers, another group thinkers, doers, observers. They are going to study this and they are going to decide how to teach their chunk of material to the other subgroups. At the end of their study period I reconvene the group and each subgroup presents its content piece of the rest of the group.
Alright, that’s the eighth example. Now, the third example I have which is our ninth example of active training activity, is called the jigsaw. Same thing, material that can be chunked into multiple sections probably the same handout that I just described to you. I put people into groups again let’s go four groups of four. They’re going to study the same material. But let’s take a look at the procedure, it’s a little bit different this time. What we do in this situation is that they’re going to study and talk about the material. And they are also going to decide once again how they are going to teach it. But we are going to change group configuration now. In other words, I have one group that, again, they are all studying the same thing, but in the study period, now within that group we are going to say, they’re going to label themselves A, B, C, D. Now I’m going to say, all right, new sub grouping. I want all of the As to come together; all the Bs to come together; all the Cs, and all the Ds. Now we have four new subgroups and within each new subgroup we have represented a feeler, a thinker, a doer, and observer. And now each person in this new subgroup teaches the content to the other people. So, three ways of teaching the same content without ever having to lecture.
So those are my 10 ways of teaching material without lecturing. There are times you do have to lecture so let me give you some really quick suggestions on how to lecture and make a lecture interesting. The emphasis should be on the “ette” because you do need to keep it short. The first one is called building interest. And, for example, what that is called a leadoff story or interesting visual. And it could be something like an anecdote, a cartoon, a graphic. It could be introducing an initial case problem. It could be a test question. What do you think about that, folks? Just anything. What do you think about the way people are teaching these days? What do you think about online learning? It could be anything like that. It’s called building interest. For maximizing understanding and retention again examples, analogies, visual backup. Obviously slides, handouts. Demonstrations are good for that. Another way to enhance a lecturette is to involve participants during your lecture. While you are lecturing, again, no more than 10 minutes, by the way, you would ask people questions. Ask them to give examples. So that would be spot challenges. You could illuminate activities by interspersing brief activities here and there. You want to take maybe a couple of minutes but that’s what we call illuminating activities. You also want to reinforce your lecture. Pose a problem along the way. You could also ask people to review with each other. So that’s another way to reinforce the lecture.
Now we talked about getting people into groups a lot. And one of the things I have experienced in the past where people are putting people into groups, we have a lot of let’s count off one, two, three; one, two, three; one, two, three. Ones over here, twos over here, threes over here. That is so boring. I want to give you some really exciting ways, fun ways, quick ways to create sub groups. One of my very favorite ones, it does take a little longer to do this. One of my favorite ways to create sub groups is to use what I call grouping cards. So you determine the number of participants and you determine how many groupings you want throughout the session. So in some cases I may want for groups of five, and again I’m working with an example of 20 people. So I may want four groups of five for one activity. Another activity I might want five groups of four and for another I might want 10 groups of two. And what I would do in that case is I would have a 3 x 5 card and I would code them. So, for example, for my four groups I may have colored dots. I would have red, blue, green, or yellow. For my five groups I might have, and I’ll talk about teams later, I might have a zoo theme. I might have lions, tigers, giraffes, elephants, and bears. And for my 10 groups of two, I only have numbers one, and two. So that means a person will get a 3 x 5 card and on that card would be a colored dot, a sticker of one of those animals and a number either a one or two. And so, therefore, I would say so, for this activity we are going to group by animals. And I could say the lions go over here, the tigers go here, the giraffes here. And another activity I would say now we’re going to group by colored dot. Reds over here, blues here, greens here, and so forth. It mixes up your groups and it moves people very quickly into their groups and it makes it much more interesting. And that’s what people love. They love to mix it up.
Now, the second way is to create subgroups that are much more fun is to use puzzles. Now I perhaps purchased different six piece children’s puzzles. Some of the maybe 10 pieces, whatever. If you don’t want to rely on those you can create your own puzzle cut out pictures from magazines and put them on card stock. Cut them put in terms of how many pieces you need. And, once again, select the number of puzzles according to the number of groups you want separate the puzzles, mix them up give each person a puzzle piece and then they have to go form groups by finding each other. And that’s kind of fun.
A third way of creating subgroups and this works very well, again, quick way of doing it particularly if you don’t know how many people are going to be in your group. I take a deck of cards with me. And that way if I don’t know how many people are going to be there and I might use jacks, queens, kings, aces if I want four groups.
A fourth way to create subgroups would be candy flavors. Generally I carry more than I need. Each person gets a wrapped candy of a different flavor. So once again, I would say okay, for this activity butterscotch is here, peppermint is here, cherry is here and lemon is there. Of course have to tell people you don’t eat them yet. You don’t eat them until after you’ve gotten into your groups.
The fifth way is play money. And I like to tie these into what group I’m working with. If I’m working with a bunch of bankers, they love the play money of course they all want to now will how come someone got $1000 bill and I only got a $10 bill. But that’s kind of fun, too, because you can mix and match. You can use your number of denominations that’s determined by the number of desired groups. So, it’s very flexible.
A sixth way of creating subgroups is to use like items. I like to take little miniature toys. Transportation for example. When I work with Amtrak or the port authority and I’ll use various transportation, cars, airplanes, boats, trains. And so, each person selects a toy and they locate others with the same type of toy. So, there are all kinds of things. You’re only limited to your imagination.
So, now once we have people in subgroups now we have to find a way to assign the roles in the small groups because there is always someone who wants to be the group leader, who always takes over. So, to prevent that from happening, we might say, all right, whoever’s birthday is closest to the day’s date, you are going to be the leader. Or someone who lives closest to her farthest from the location, whoever’s wearing a certain color, or you could have sub group members vote, you can draw numbers, the person who has the most pets, siblings, I mean whatever. One of the techniques that is great is let’s say have someone who’s birthday closest to the days date. You say okay, now you can pick who you want to be the group leader here. So you can make it fun, mix it up, have a good time with it. The other thing that I wanted to point out with you and share with you today is encouraging all of you to use props and other theatrical techniques to make it fun. But it has to relate to the topic. So if I’m doing a program on change for example, one of my giveaways or props would be a kaleidoscope. Everybody gets a kaleidoscope and we talked about how kaleidoscope represents change. If I’m doing teambuilding, again going back to puzzle pieces. I’ll use a crystal ball to represent career development and talk about do you look into your crystal ball to find out where you’re going to go in your career or do you need to set goals? We talk about professional image and perception we bring in two packages that in one is beautifully wrapped, lovely wrapping paper, beautiful bows and things of that nature and I bring in another one that has kind of awful wrapping paper, may be not a great-looking ribbon or bow on it. And I would say now which one would you rather have? Of course some people would say I would take the ugly one, it’s so ugly it must be good. But in general we talk about I would take the pretty package even though they have the same thing inside, why would I take the pretty package? I use a magic spring to represent flexibility, resilience. So I’ll bring in a big Slinky and then people get to take home many Slinkys. So they remember what we talked about. I also like to use, particularly for all day workshops I like to use various themes. So we might have a boat cruise, we might do outer space, I have a jungle theme, I mentioned earlier that I will use different animals to create subgroups. I may have a zoo theme. I might have a sea theme. So this time of year which we are moving into the fall, but I will have a sea theme, I’ll have a sports theme where our subgroups might be different sports teams. There are lots of things we can do that make it much more interesting and fun and creative.
Now as with all things, good things must come to an end. And, I want to share with you quickly some closing activities. And I want to point out that closing activities should involve three elements: Summary, self-assessment, and an action plan. And typically, I want you to think about, at the end of the training program who does the summary? Generally it’s the trainer. Now let me ask you why is that? You know what you said. But the important thing is do they know what you said? So what I like to do is called summary of learning. I create subgroups and let’s say again 12 people for the sake of discussion, two groups of six each group gets a flipchart and I ask them to position the flipchart so they can’t see each other. And I give them a few minutes and I asked them to I want you to write down what are the key learning points that you are taking away from this training session? And then at the end of the designated period they turn them around and we take a look and compare the two lists. If you have done your job as a trainer, those lists should look pretty much alike. And that is a great way to enforcement for them it also helps you take a look at yourself. Did you do your job? Now, there could be some variations but if you have been on target those lists will be the same. Another interesting closing activity is called full circle. So at the beginning I would have had them look at objectives but also I would have asked people at the very beginning of the workshop what do you want to know? And we would’ve captured those on a flipchart page. And so, at the end, we go back to that flipchart page and go through each one and ask participants if the objective was met. And if it was that we check it off. We strike through it. Again if you have done your job, each one of those should be marked off. It helps reinforce that the learning has taken place. Also mentioned that people should’ve done an action plan. And with the action plan, we complete it individually, I think it’s very important that people have an opportunity to share with a partner or depending upon the type of group you have, you may want to just be shared with a subgroup and not just a partner. If you do have a partner you notice on the sample I have given you, that partner comes sort of a buddy and you check up on each other after a while. And the third element that needs to happen at the end is a self-assessment. And I have a couple of very interesting ways of doing a self-assessment. One is very impactful by the way it’s called human continuum and I want you to picture this at the back of the room along wall on one end I put a sign that says clueless and at the other end competent. And I asked the participants to look at the signs and I want them to visualize the wall as a continuum. And I want them to think about where they were at the beginning of the program as to their level of knowledge, comfort level, and skill of that particular subject. And then I asked them to get up and put themselves where they think they were at let’s say 9 o’clock in the morning when they first came in. And they get up and they put themselves wherever. And, it’s interesting most people put themselves close to clueless. And some people will put themselves more toward competent and then I say to them, okay, now I want you to think about where you are now at 4:30. The same thing, where would you put yourself now? And you generally have movement one way or the other. And it can be very impactful because I as a trainer I’m sitting back and I’m looking at this human continuum and it is very interesting, it’s very visual. So, I would advise you to do that. And, by the way I do ask them to share why they put themselves where they did. Another thing I like to do at the end is what I call reflection. And I ask people to respond to the following questions. The most important thing I learned in this program is … One thing I’m going to do or do differently is… What I still want or need to learn more about is… What I liked best about the program is…
And, again, I like them to share this with each other and it puts the onus on them. They have to think about what did I learn? What am I going to do, what am I taking away? So, it helps cement their own learning. It helps them think about what are they actually going to do to take responsibility for their learning. And again if we had an opportunity with this program, I would ask you folks to do the same. But I do hope that the whirlwind of things that we went through today, the 10 active learning techniques, ways to have creative closings, ways to group people creatively, some theatrical techniques. So I do hope one thing that you have taken away from today’s session and with that, Sarah I am going to turn this back to you.
SARAH: All right, perfect, thank you so much, Karen, that was wonderful. And we unfortunately do not have time for that live Q&A but, I’m going to go ahead and leave the line open so, attendees go ahead and send us those questions now and you will receive an email response with Karen’s answers next week. So, while we wait for some of those questions to filter and let me share a little bit about the ways you can keep in touch. Karen’s contact information is on that slide right there and please check out her book, The Trainers Handbook. And, as always, connect with us on social media and register for our weekly webinar Wednesdays at hrdqu.com. Okay, perfect, Karen would you just like to add any final thoughts before I wrap up this session then?
KAREN: The only thing I would like to say is thank you so much for joining us today. As I said this is one of my very favorite topics. I love it, it made a difference in my life when I started using active training techniques. And by the way as a plug, there is a fourth addition of The Trainers Handbook that will be coming out in a few months so I just finished that and so I would say probably in about six months it should be out maybe even before that. I added a lot of new things to it so if you have the current copy there will be reason to buy a new one because there’s lots of new stuff in it.
SARAH: All right, perfect, thank you. And everybody that is all the time that we have for today and you will receive that email with all Karen’s answers about mid next week. So, we appreciate your time and we hope that you found today’s webinar informative. Thank you.
In the fast-paced global environment of the 21st century, the need for effective leaders has never been greater.
In this highly interactive session, join trainer Karen Lawson, as participants will be introduced to a variety of creative and active-training techniques to enhance their training programs, regardless of content. They will experience proven techniques for facilitating these activities to meet learning objectives and audience needs.
Participants Will Learn
- Explain the concept, principles, strategies, and techniques of active training
- Use active-training methods to increase retention, build understanding, and improve skills
- Adapt active-training techniques to any course content
- Use creative approaches to motivate and energize the group
Who Should Attend:
- Human Resources Professionals
- Organizational Development Professionals
Dr. Karen Lawson
Dr. Lawson is an international consultant, executive coach, speaker, and author. In her work with Fortune 500 companies as well as small businesses, she works with leaders at all levels. Clients include a variety of prominent organizations from financial services, pharmaceutical, telecommunications, manufacturing, health care, government, and education. Drawing on her own leadership experiences and knowledge of human interaction, she helps leaders fine-tune their leadership and influencing skills to make a difference in their organizations and reach a higher level of success.