Role of Training

Solving Problems

Effective training must effect positive change in trainees on the knowledge, skills and behavioral levels in a way that completely or partially solves problems faced by those trainees, their organizations or their communities. If a training program does not lead to positive change in trainees attending it then such training is of little value. Even if a training program does happen to make some changes in trainees, let’s say on the knowledge level and even on the skills level too, yet fails to help in solving any real problem or fulfill any strong need then such training as well is not very useful. The role of training is to problem solve through effective positive change in participants on various levels.

Transformational

Highly successful training transforms individuals completely by making them have a paradigm shift thus changing their behavior by changing their beliefs in addition to developing their skills. Such transformational training does not have to be long. It should focus on experiential learning, total immersion training, powerful story telling, lots of visuals and videos as well as informational stats to support and effect belief change and thus a powerful and sustained positive change in behavior.

Story of a Mind Maps Workshop

I once attended a training session about brainstorming using mind maps. The session was largely nothing but a PowerPoint presentation that had lovely illustrations of colorful mind maps while the ‘trainer’ or presenter set about to speak about the history of mind maps, their uses and how they can be constructed. He even asked us to each draw a mind map on paper for how we see ourselves in 5 years. I admit that the visuals were good, his explanation was clear and his providing of an activity was a good idea yet by the end of the training we did not really grasp how to use mind maps to problem solve.

The session was also a bit too boring with me wanting so much to leave. The person next to me actually left early in the session telling me he found it boring. The most astonishing part to note here was the big smile on the face of the trainer by the end of the session and his sense of pride and happiness thinking that he had done an amazing job in that session! I believe if evaluation forms have been provided to participants and in particular questions about practicality of the training and its usefulness in real life were included the trainer would have known better about his real performance. The session was largely information based with lots of visuals but with no focus on actually using mind maps to solve problems.

Conclusion

Effective training is that which leads to positive change in the behavior, skills and knowledge of participants attending it in a way that helps solve pressing problems and fulfill strong needs. A training program that fails to problem solve or achieve a positive change in trainees is of little or no value at all.

Have you ever attended a training program only to find that it was completely worthless and useless? Tell us why you found it as so.

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Switching Attitude 180 Degrees

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I remember my aunt telling my mom about her son, that is my cousin, that one of his amazing characteristics is that he tries everything and never says no to trying something new. My aunt was saying this about my cousin in a very cheerful and energetic manner. My cousin at that time was perhaps around 14 years old. Upon hearing her words describing what she perceived as an innate characteristic of her son my mind instantly flashed back to a scene from the past when that very cousin of mine was perhaps only 3 or 4 years old.

Never Tries Twice

I remember him standing there in the balcony with his older brother with a deeply sad face due to finding himself unable to ride the skateboard successfully like his older brother. His older brother was trying repeatedly to convince him to give the skateboard another try and that through repeated trials he will eventually be able to use the skateboard successfully.

My younger cousin however was so stubborn and broke up crying while refusing completely to give the skateboard another try. That was the very cousin whom my aunt was praising years later and mentioning that he does not hesitate to try new things and she spoke as though it was some intrinsic characteristic he had!

Attitude Switching

As my mind flashed back to such a childhood scene while listening in great surprise to what my aunt was saying I had an aha moment. I realized that indeed people can and do change drastically in life and even switch completely from one extreme to its complete opposite.

This story really gives hope to those who think they can never change and that whatever characteristics they have are permanent.

Do you remember holding on to some belief in the past or having a certain attitude that you have now completely switched to its opposite?