One of the biggest obstacles a new trainer faces is overcoming his or her shyness and fear of facing a live audience and standing in front of trainees to handle and manage a training session. Usually a person who faces such a challenge in an extreme way, to the extent that it prevents him or her completely from being able to take the move and stand in front of an audience, usually such a person is afraid that he or she might make a mistake.
All sorts of negative ideas jump in his or her mind such as that he will be asked a difficult question that he will not be able to answer or that one of the trainees would make a disruptive behavior or that the trainees would break out of control completely or any other extreme negative thoughts.
Mistakes are OK
The first step to solve this issue is to understand and fully believe that it is totally OK for a trainer, be he novice or experienced, to make mistakes during training. The trick is to be able to act in a confident way even in case of making a mistake. The knowledge of this idea and the belief in it puts down a huge burden from the shoulders of such would-be trainers and provides them with a great deal of calmness.
Being aware of the various difficult situations a trainer might be facing, such as the ones mentioned above, and learning how to deal with them also makes the new trainer more confident in entering the training room and carrying out the training.
After changing the flawed belief that a professional trainer never makes mistakes during training, an additional technique to build trainer confidence is through visualization. One day before delivering the training session the trainer can start visualizing himself or herself actually delivering the training session, answering trainee questions, dealing with difficult participants and speaking in front of the audience with confidence. When the actual time for the real session comes, the trainer will find himself full of confidence and will be able to deliver the training well.
Practice makes perfect. The more the novice trainer attempts to practice facing a live audience the better he would become and the more confident he will be. He can start first with facing people he knows well and facing small groups then building up to larger groups of total strangers. Using this protected environment approach can help the novice trainer overcome his fears and gain the needed confidence to face a live audience.
Finally, the novice trainer should understand that it is totally OK to feel some anxiety and nervousness prior to delivering a training session in particular if he is about to deliver it to a new audience at a new place and the training course is a new course that he is delivering for the first time.
This never means that such a trainer is not competent. The only important thing is that the trainer in such a case is able to keep such anxiety internal and not make it show to the outside audience.
By understanding that it is OK for a trainer to make mistakes during the training or feel anxious prior to the training and by using visualization a novice trainer can learn how to overcome his or her shyness and fear of facing a live audience.
What is the most difficult situation you can imagine facing during a training session?