Trainer Skill Development

If you read the chapter in my book The Training Physical about training trainers before training others, you know that I believe that learning is diminished when the trainer lacks the competencies to facilitate.

I had a good conversation yesterday with a Talent Development Manager, who noted that her team of trainers were very good classroom facilitator but that they lacked the skills to deliver content via the virtual environment, as in a webinar.

We talked about how very different the skill sets are and that some classroom trainers even with training have a difficult time making the transition.  Yet she noted that even though she is getting the hang of it herself, she doesn’t feel ready or qualified to train her staff.

This is why I support a program called the Virtual Facilitator Trainer Certification course offered by NetSpeed Learning Solutions.  Their CEO is a master virtual facilitator, wrote the book “Great Webinars” and has developed a program that can actually make a virtual facilitator out of a classroom facilitator in short order.

With more training going the way of virtual delivery, it is imperative that trainers develop this new skill set.  If you want to train your staff in virtual skills, and want to learn how to save some money at the same time, email me at

A Quality Training Manager!

I discovered two super training managers this week!  Not only are they competent in the skills needed to manage their learning functions, but they are using those skills to actively create a return on the investment being made by their organizations!

First off, they both are operating off an actual training plan, created last year, before a budget was established!  (I’m so excited at this point I can hardly type)  They have a calendar of goals, objectives and tasks built into the plan so that both staff and client are focused!

Second, they are being proactive in seeking solutions that will solve problems that divisions in the company are experiencing, and they are focused on outcomes before shopping for solutions.

Lastly, they both know how to position training solutions and write proposals for obtaining senior management approval and buy in to the selected solution.

Now you may be wondering if everything at these companies are working perfectly with such super stars for training managers.  Unfortunately, both of these companies are a little slow on the uptick and don’t realize what they have going on in their favor. 

The slow approval process, delays training solutions being implemented which means employee behaviors not changing.  This all adds up to less efficiency than could be realized.

But at the end of the day, these two companies can be successful because they have the right talent on board to make things happen.  The only challenge I see for both of them is retaining this talent so they don’t seek greener pastures elsewhere.

Schedule The Surgery

As I wrote in the purpose of The Training Physical, my hope was that training managers would be the primary reader of the book so I wrote to them as the reader.  I also hoped that senior leaders in the company would learn more about the value of training from the way it should be evaluated.

Since I am finding that most of the people reading the book and blog are the senior leaders, today I am dedicating this blog to them.

By the time you have finished the book, you no doubt are getting a gut feeling on how productive and purposeful your training department has been.  Maybe you have laid out goals, and coached, but sadly there is no improvement.  The medication you have been giving these employees is not working, so it is time to schedule them for surgery.

The term “surgery” as it relates to the Training Physical process is about removing the infected tissue.  Working with Human Resources, it is time to set up a corrective action process that will include the ultimate surgical procedure of termination.

Sometimes, there is no curing the patient if they want to remain ill.  So friends, remove the unproductive and replace with the productive.  Find the “right heart” as I describe in the book, and become healthy again!

Training Needs to Walk more than Talk

I found myself writing several articles this week for different publications and they all centered around successful implementations of training and how they supported an organizational goal or solved a problem.

It dawned on me that what I always took for granted when I ran training is not something that happens everywhere, and here in lies the problem of training returning on the investment every year.  Simply put, training needs to walk more than talk.

I find (not on purpose) a lot of training departments that talk a good talk about what they are “going to be doing” or “planning to do” this year.  But when it comes to implementing they get stuck in the mud!

The phrase I’m leaning on here is Walk Your Talk.  So it is good to have plans, and vision and purpose.  That is not only essential, it is the “Talk.”  However, we must implement projects, programs, workshops etc. to actually “Walk” and get things done.

If you think you talk more than you walk, then start keeping track of your accomplishments each month.  Post them on the wall for all to see.  Nothing fancy, try a sheet of paper with the month at the top.  Shoot to fill it in, and when it is still blank, it is time to stop talking and start walking!