How to make the best of training

October 25, 2015

Whether we conduct a training programme or attend one, we want to make the best out of it. I would like to believe so. I just finished an international training programme. I have been conducting this course for the last six years.   I used to ask participants in the last session:  how would you apply the learning of the course? I would get responses but often not very concrete ones.

How to help participants internalize the learning of the course and apply it in their work was always in mind. I did it differently this time. In the opening session, I spoke on “How to make the best out of this training” and shared the following points:

  • Listen to understand: Learning happens only when we listen to understand. We should listen to understand the ideas, concepts and approaches.
  • Participate actively but keep your interventions “brief” and “relevant”: Number of times we notice long discussions during training programmes which deviate from the central theme and do not serve any purpose. Even when participants agree on ground rules to keep their interventions short, not everyone follows them.
  • After every session think and write: What can I apply in my work and how?

These ideas were reiterated throughout the course, including the recap of every day’s learning.  It helped.  The participants were more engaged, looked for solutions and were found sharing ideas with each other during breaks.  The fact that they had to write down action point from each session made them more attentive, focused and results-oriented.

And, we planned the last session on: “How will we apply the learning of the course in our work?” The participants went back to their session-wise notes and came up with specific action points. I was pleased to listen to their ideas for action. I hope they would implement them. I also intend to remind them from time to time.