How to Conduct an Effective Training Session
All the planning has been done. All the preparation is taken care of.
You know your training needs, youve set goals, management is behind
you, you promoted your training schedule, and prepared materials, space,
and people. The time has finally come: Training day is here. Here are
some specific tips and techniques to help you run an effective training
session that accomplishes your goals in an enjoyable and engaging way
for everyone involved.
Here are 12 proven techniques to conduct a successful training session:
- Tell trainees what youre going to cover. Introduce your session with a brief overview of the training subjects main points.
- Tell them the information. In the main portion of the session,
explain key points, go over policies, demonstrate procedures, and relate
any other information trainees need to know.
- Tell them what you told them. Conclude with a summary of your
opening overview. Use repetition to help trainees grasp and retain
- Always explain what trainees are going to see before you show a
multimedia portion. This practice creates a better learning environment
by guiding trainees to know what to look for and what to remember.
Explaining the purpose of the multimedia ensures an effective reception
for its information.
- Use as much hands-on training as possible. The most effective
training uses all the senses to affect learning. Demonstrate and apply
teaching points to create greater understanding and knowledge of the
- Test frequently. Tests are most effective when students know they
will be quizzed, because theyll pay close attention to the material.
Testing is an objective way to determine whether training achieved its
- Involve trainees. For example, ask participants to share their
experiences with the training topic. Many trainees are experienced
personnel who have valuable information to contribute. All trainees will
get more out of sessions by hearing about their co-workers experiences
with the subjectand not just the trainers lecture points. Hearing
different voices also keeps sessions varied and interesting. Structure
interaction time into all your sessions.
- Repeat questions before answering them. This practice ensures that
all participants know what the question is so they can make sense of the
- Analyze the session as you go. Always be on the lookout for what
works best. When you discover a new technique or method that clicks with
the group, note it on your training materials so it can be incorporated
into the training outline to be used in future sessions.
- Keep your session on track. Start on time and finish on time. Dont
hold up class waiting for late arrivers. Run the class according to the
schedule and dont get too far off course. Opening up discussion among
participants may lead to some pertinent tangents, but dont let side
issues take over. Ask if theres enough interest to pursue a separate
session on that topic, but get this class back to the lesson plan.
- Put yourself in their shoesor seats. Give frequent breaks, especially for half-day or all-day sessions.
- Solicit feedback on the training session. Critiques work best when
they are written and anonymous, unless a trainee volunteers to discuss
his or her thoughts in person. Trainee input is vital for making the
next sessionand the overall training programmore
These 12 steps are the basic foundation for a solid training session
that runs efficiently and that conveys the necessary information for
meeting the sessions goals. They also incorporate ways to begin
improving training on the fly. In other words, you cant go wrong by
following these steps in every training session you run.