The world of business and technology is ever changing. New information gets added every second. It would be impossible for an employee to maintain their productivity while trying to keep up with these changes and innovations. In order to combat this, most people in leadership roles would turn to corporate training in order to better equip their employees and to boost morale. Whether it is sales training, management training or leadership conferences, businesses around the world spend billions of dollars each year to ensure their employees can deliver their best.
Even after spending billions of dollars on training and development, employees might not be paying attention to the material and information being shared. The reasons for this can be numerous. The lack of motivation or even the mounting work load on their desk isa constant distraction. In the information technology sectors, the information being presented during training might seem too factual. This can also cause the attendees to feel bored and close themselves off to new information.
Yet, the benefits of training and development completely outweigh its challenges.Corporate training ensures increase in productivity and enhancement of existing skills. It provides an open and safe platform to discuss weaknesses and also encourages employees to come up with solutions. Training and development helps the employees understand their roles and responsibilities better, also providing them with the tools to be better at their job. But most importantly, people are less likely to look for changes if they feel that their company is investing in them.
There are multiple ways to keep your employees focused and attentive during training. Some of these corporate tips are listed below :
It is natural for the participants to feel distracted during training. They could have the urge to send out that very important email, or read up on the new report sitting in their desk drawer. In order for the attendees to soak up new information, the trainer would require their complete attention and focus. It is crucial to identify all the causes of distraction that the attendees might face. These could be generic or be industry specific. As a thumb rule, smart phones and laptops should be turned off in the training area. If technology is required for participation, either clickers should be provided or an announcement for the use of phones or laptops should be made.
It is also important that the attendees aren’t thinking about work. It is for this reason many companies and corporations are opting for offsite trainings, probably a resort of a hotel far from the office. Where the attendees feel relaxed and comfortable and aren’t thinking about the office. These training retreats can also double up as team building opportunities.
Where you train is as important as your training material. People respond well to open spaces and a clean environment. The learning space should have ample lighting, although natural day light is preferred. The learning space should be free of distractions such as art or boards which aren’t being used for the purpose of the training. Another useful tip is to not have ‘entry’ and ‘exit’ doors in the view of the attendees.This would ensure that they won’t be distracted by the comings and goings of people.
The best learning spaces are those that aren’t stuffy and cramped. People learn better when they have a sense of ample personal space, yet the attendees shouldn’t be so far apart that the discussion and participation is affected. The ideal space per participant should be around 12 to 15 square feet.
The room’s configuration should be such that it promotes free and easy communication. Althoughtypical auditorium style seating might allow you to increase the number of attendees, u-shape tables or round tables promote participation and learning. In addition,all technology that the trainer requires should be already plugged in and tested before hand. It is hard enough to keep an audience engaged, technical problems particularly those that can be avoided by preparations, would cause an unnecessary break in the flow and retention of information.
The average attention span for people when receiving useful information is around 15 to 20 minutes. It takes a while for attendees to get back to the learning mode once they come back from a break. So not only is it important to schedule the material and learning, but also strategically use breaks to help important information sink in.
It is equally important that the audience stays engaged during the break as well. After every 15 to 20 minutes, the trainees should be invited to share and discuss the new information with their colleagues. This would provide them with a necessary break and would not affect their attention span. It would also help them retain the information better and turn the session into an interactive discussion.
Adult learners respond differently to information. As professionals they have gotten use to segmented information with clear market categories. Professionals also respond really well to comparisons. Howusing the information being provided would compare to how they were doing things before should be conveyed more specifically. Clearly numbered lists should be made so as to ensure the points do not contradict each other. If exceptions have to be pointed out, it should be done in that particular point itself.
A very effective way to ensure prolonged attention span and retention is to use visual mediums. Illustrate using charts and graphs. Replacing slides with a lot of text, with pictures. People respond better to visual mediums than text. But it should not be overdone for the sake of aesthetics. People generally pay less attention of pictures which just make the information more pleasant looking. Rather use relevant pictures which could supplement or replace the text.
In order to ensure the attendees retain information, stories and examples should be used to make a point. It would make an overall longer lasting impression and help in recollecting the information and putting it to use.
Corporate Training tips are ever evolving ,therefore you need to keep in mind the following .Training professionals and keeping them engaged is really challenging, so is doing everything mentioned above. So the most important thing you can do to make sure that the attendees learn, is to ensure that they have fun. The training session shouldn’t seem like work, it shouldn’t seem like a part of their day job and definitely shouldn’t feel like just another meeting. It should be an environment that put a pause on their work schedule and reinvigorates their mind.
Hope these Corporate Training Tips work for you !