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How to Become a Great Trainer

How to Become a Great Trainer

It is well known that presenting is different from training. A good trainer focuses on delegates and his intention is to transfer a set of skills to them. In contrast a presenter is interested to report what has already been accomplished for the benefit of the audience. Although they are both public speakers, their roles are fundamentally different. A good trainer should put the delegates at the centre of the learning process and continuously use novel interactive high retention methods to make sure the delegates learn the new skills and remember them well after the course is finished.

How exactly can a trainer achieve this? The following is a number of core principles a good trainer should follow to get quality results from the training he provides.


Learn Every Ones Name and Use it

One fun way to do this is to ask participants to ask the person on their right the following two questions:

1. What is your first name?

2. In a movie about your life, which Hollywood actor or actress should play you?

Then ask the participants to introduce the person on their right with their first name and the Hollywood name. This exercise is a good ice breaker and also helps you to remember names more easily by association.


Teach with Examples

There is nothing like a good story to help people remember a principle or technique. Use stories from famous people and their experiences as your examples. Have at least two sets of different examples for each concept. Look animated and enthusiastic when telling the story and use participants questions and expressions to improve your examples and the way you communicate with them.


Make it Fun

Studies from the University of New Hampshire have shown that humour has a positive impact on a variety of processes including communication, development of goals and emotional management. These result in increased productivity, viability and personal development. Light hearted humour and some spontaneous interactions with delegates can increase participants’ interests and attention in the subject and therefore boost learning.


Ask Effective Questions

Asking the right questions is essential when it comes to information exchange which is exactly what we do in a training session. Trainers obtain some information from delegates by questioning and give some information back in the form of techniques, principals and concepts. There are many different types of questioning techniques that can be used but one of the most effective ones which can be applied to almost any situation is Kipling’s questions:

“I keep six honest serving men
(They taught me all I knew);
Their names are What and Why and When
and How and Where and Who”


Get Feedback

At the end of the session ask every delegate these two questions:

1. Which part of the session did you find most useful?

2. How would you apply this technique/method/principle to your life?

Asking specific questions helps delegates to recap the course in a few seconds and think about the application of the materials in their professional and personal life.



Follow Up

Offer half day follow up courses after three month. Follow up courses enable participants to examine their learning and discoveries and get a chance to put the techniques and methods suggested in the course into practice. Be prepared for questions and suggestions. This is also an ideal time to collect valuable feedback to improve your course for future.