How to create effective #trainingcontent as a #corporatetrainer? Part 1

The ability to create content that is effective for face to face training is a critical but rather rare skill. Most corporate trainers have no background in instructional design and most instructional designers have no experience in #training delivery.

To compound matters we have fads in training which people follow without understanding the intricacies of learning like “No PPT’s”, “More Training Games”, “More Role plays” etc.  To add to the complexity too much of a good thing ceases to be a good thing.

As a #corporate trainer, in my opinion you need to get a working understanding of the following concepts and theories, and keep them in mind when you design the training and when you create training materials.

  1. The training cycle
  2. 5 Learning theories – behaviorism, cognitivism, constructivism, social learning & humanism
  3. Knowles theory of Andragogy , Learning grid
  4. Kolb’s learning cycle
  5. Learning Styles – Honey & Mumford & Sensory preferences-VAK
  6. Multiple Intelligences by Howard Gardner
  7. Setting of learning objectives: Blooms Taxonomy & Krathwohl’s Taxonomy
  8. Gagne’s nine steps (Events of instruction)
  9. ADDIE model and basic ID principles: chunking, reinforcement etc.
  10. Curriculum design approaches: Spiral, problem centered etc.
  11. 5 Training methodologies – lecture, role-plays, guided discussion, audiovisuals, games etc.
  12. Evaluation of training effectiveness – Kirkpatrick, Philips ROI method

Let’s discuss some common training methodologies keeping in mind Learning Styles. Learning style is more or less a consistent way in which a person perceives, conceptualizes, organizes and recalls information. (Ellis 1985)

1. The “No PPT’s” dictum. Like most of you, I have been with clients who say “NO PPT’s”. I have also met trainers who claim they do not use Power Point at all. They claim people just do not want PPT’s. I can totally understand where they come from…I have suffered through some presentations…whole paragraphs on the slides, reading of slides, worse with back to audience, slides on slides on slides. However, the issue is not Microsoft PowerPoint but rather a very inept presenter. So please as corporate trainers do not throw the baby out with the bath water…. Remember some learners are VISUAL Learners (Sensory preferences-VAK)….PowerPoint and Prezi work for them. They are powerful tools to use. Use them well. To illustrate, a slide on prioritization:

  1. prioritization






I personally also use PowerPoint to help me keep the flow of the workshop with place holders for  games / activities and role-plays etc.

2. Let’s decode games and activities. I am all for games and activities. Can’t imagine Team Building without games. They are powerful and apart from being fun are great for the Activists (Honey and Mumford’s Learning Styles). But is not the best way for the other 3 styles. Theorists actually like lectures. I have overheard some very unhappy participants complaining that whole workshop just had games…

3. I have also gone through an overdose of role-plays. A full day of role-playing in my view is bad design. Again role-playing is just up the Activist’s (Honey and Mumford’s Learning Styles) alley but can be a drag for other learning styles.

For each major concept, use a methodology for each learning style. That way you cater to all learning styles as well as get people to move through the learning cycle.

The bottom line is to mix the methodologies to cater to different learning styles not just to add variety. (In a later article will talk about this in detail.)

Contributed by Lovely Kumar, Chief Projects – Larks Learning.

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