Our core philosophy at Larks is that for actual learning to occur, learners and facilitators need to both take ownership of the learning outcomes. Unfortunately in #corporate training learners do not come in with that attitude. Some of them have been pushed into the training room by their managers kicking and screaming, others are confused on why are they there and still others are only there so that they can get attendance for the compulsory training. The feedback forms at the end evaluate the facilitator / trainer but there is hardly any evaluation of the learner’s receptiveness, effort or ability to learn.
In a review session with a client where we discuss trainer feedback and participant feedback and how to improve our next batch of trainings, we observed that some participants were attending workshops twice without realizing that they were coming for the same workshop again, the percentage of participants doing the pre-work was low and they were unclear on why had they been nominated (despite the policy being that they have a discussion with their managers of what did he/she expect as the learning outcomes). Hmm…so we start brainstorming on how to create more ownership in the participants of our workshops for what they learn and takeaway from the workshop.
I would like to share the process as an illustration of #creativity at work. Creativity is a much abused word and people have great misconceptions on how does it work.
We started the brainstorming with the question: “What can we do so that the participants have ownership of their learning from the workshop and are aware of why they are doing this workshop?”
A few concepts that popped in our mind…Stephen Covey’s “begin with the end in mind”…get them to have a goal for the workshop. Get them to articulate the goal and commit to it. Make it interesting. Use the right brain.
Over the summer our children got holiday homework (yes, though nowadays it is not that dreaded), in which they were to write a book review ….But they needed to draw a character from the book, cut it out and paste relevant parts of the review on the body. Could we adapt the idea? This would be a right brained activity.
The final outcome was the following training game: “I will take-away”
Material required: Newspaper (cut in ½)(you can use chart paper but we wanted to be eco-friendly), scissors. A4 sheets, sketch pens, cello-tape, glue stick
- Please draw yourself on the newspaper with a sketch pen (show exhibit)
- Cut it out
- Now make a shirt for yourself with A 4 paper(show how to fold the paper)
- On the lapel of shirt write your name (this is for ownership)
- On the 3 flaps that form of the shirt
- What is the name of the workshop?
- What is the aim of the workshop?
- What will you take-away (learnings) from the workshop? (Begin with end in mind)
- After they complete ask them to stick on the wall or pin-up on pin board.
- Tell them that at the end of the workshop, they will take the cut out of themselves with them but before that they will need to see that are they actually taking-away from the workshop what they came for. (This will focus their minds on learning what is relevant for them over the course of the workshop)
- Go over and read each one. (Now you know if you have to adapt what you share based on what they want to takeaway)
Voila, a new activity and absolutely customized for our client’s needs… We have done this activity many times now with great results.
Now let’s derive a few lessons on how to be creative…
- Expose yourself to ideas….read books, blogs, talk to people, and meet new people. Understand good ideas can come from anywhere. Saturate yourself with experiences
- Brainstorm with a goal. It saves times and focuses your attention to coming up with solutions to the issue at hand.
- Adapt, combine and build upon ideas that you have already seen. You do not need to have “new to the world” ideas…what you need is a fresh way of combining the pieces.
Lovely Kumar is a facilitator, trainer, psychometric assessor and is co-founder at Larks Learning Pvt Ltd. She has a unique background which combines economics, management, advertising, sales, teaching and training. She has worked with a range of corporates and academic institutions. Additionally she has obtained international certifications in training and psychometric assessments.
Learn more and reach Lovely Kumar for training workshops or DISC assessments at at www.larkslearning.com, firstname.lastname@example.org or 91-9899108659.