As I sit here in front of my computer, I am looking at my screensaver picture of a beautiful snowy owl in flight. I love owls! Owls, like all birds of prey, have keen eyesight that is necessary to spot the small rodents they depend on for meals. Birds are lucky—they can fly high above the earth and have an aerial view of the expansive terrain below them. Wouldn’t it be nice to have that ability as humans?
Even though we, as classroom and virtual trainers, do not have the ability to fly like owls, we still need keen eyesight and hearing. To facilitate a positive learning environment for your learners, watch and listen for these five items:
1. Observe whose hands are going up, and how frequently. We need to ensure everyone gets a chance to contribute in class and that one person is not dominating the room.
2. Listen actively to how discussions are progressing. We need to make sure they stay timely and on topic.
3. Notice body language. How are learners communicating non-verbally? Are they nodding off? Standing up frequently? Are they smiling? Watch for patterns so you can accurately judge the mood of the room.
4. Listen to small group discussions during exercises. Walk around and listen to what your learners are saying. Are they involved in the activity or are they just socializing? Is anyone confused or in need of assistance?
5. Pay attention to time management. Are you behind or ahead of schedule? If you are always behind, ask yourself why and address the issues. Perhaps your course needs a redesign, or you are passing on too much information when you deliver the content.
These items are not the only things to watch and listen for when you deliver training. Attend our Advanced Instructional Techniques workshop to learn how to create a positive climate for learning, lead groups, motivate learners, deal with difficult participants, and much more.
Are there specific details you pay close attention to when delivering your courses? Please share with us!