The common pitfalls noticed in ILT sessions include lack of planning, less qualified instructors or little or no interactivities. So how do you avoid these pitfalls and ensure your ILT sessions are a success? Read this blog to learn more.
1. Lack of Training Goals
ILT sessions can fail to make their mark if they lack clear training goals. These goals are usually in tune with the company’s goals but not in tune with the learners’ needs. When the training program is not in tune with what thelearners want, the training will lack purpose and the trainer will find it difficult to comprehend the motives of the training program.
Knowledge of the training goals will help the trainer understand how he has to design the program. When these are spelt out as learning objectives, it lets the learner know what he should be able to do at the end of the training program and the performance expected from him after the training.
2. Training is not Engaging
Classroom training is generally perceived as ‘death by PowerPoint’ where trainees are presented a series of PPTs with lectures by presenters and are expected to take copious notes. Though it may not be exactly as described, training lacks engagement if it involves just passive listening by the trainees. So even if the content is interesting, it will fail to engage the learners.
The training has to be made engaging, apart from PPTs, adding multimedia content such as videos, pictures and interactivities break the monotony.
An interesting way to capture the attention of trainees is to present the content in the form of a story or narrative. Human beings are inclined to pay more attention to stories. Presenting the content in the form of imaginary scenarios or what if situations is bound to make the session engaging and help them remember the facts and statistics. Gamifying some parts of the training will motivate learners because of their elements of competition and scorekeeping.
Make the training engaging by using techniques to involve the learners. The views and opinions of learners must be solicited by the facilitator; this will enrich the session and enable the learners to learn from each other. Allowing learners to share their knowledge and experience will encourage them to pay more attention and add a real-life insight into training.
Create a collaborative learning environment by encouraging learners to ask questions. Including hands-on activities in the session that help facilitators divide the audience into large or small groups. These activities will encourage the groups to engage in discussions, exercises, participate in games or quizzes. This breaks the monotony of the sessions.
The facilitator has to move about the room and look for disengaged participants. He should ask questions, improvise activities and encourage participation to keep everyone engaged.
3. Instructors without Passion
Sometimes instructors may lack the passion they need to bring in the training session. The reasons may be burnout or a marginal interest in the subject. The content could be excellent but the instructor may not be able to deliver it in an exciting way.
The instructor should be genuinely interested in the topic, able to communicate the relevant concepts clearly, adopt the right approach and have the right tone of voice to create interest in the learners. To put things straight, learners will not care about the content if the instructor does not.
The instructor has to communicate his passion for the subject through his voice, gestures and the way he presents the material. While it may not be possible to display the same kind of enthusiasm for every subject, showing learners how the course is relevant to their job will make them pay attention. Trainers must know how to engage their audience best. Make your trainers competent by giving them periodical training to become better trainers.
Whatever the topic, the facilitator should be able to connect with the audience. An approachable stance and a sense of humor will certainly work. The motive should be to encourage learning and encourage discussions.
4. Cognitive Overload
This is another risk classroom training sessions can run into. The human brain can only take in a certain amount of information at a fixed time. Trying to cram too much information in one session will have a negative impact on engagement, completion and the uptake of new courses by learners. Prevent cognitive overload on learners by distributing the content between sessions, and adopting a blended learning approach where a part of the content can be delivered online or as microlearning modules so that it becomes manageable and accessible to learners when they have free chunks of time.
Another option is the flipped classroom approach where instructional content is delivered outside the classroom and the activities that are traditionally considered as homework is moved to the classroom. In this model, learners watch videos; go through online lectures or self-study courses before attending a classroom training session. Classroom sessions are used for discussions on the content, group work and collaborative activities under the guidance of instructors.
5. Failure to Gather Feedback
Knowing what learners think about the sessions is important. Failing to gather feedback will not give insight into room for improvement or the drawbacks of the training. Adding surveys and ratings to the session will help gather valuable feedback that can be applied in the next session.
There you have it, the five common pitfalls in ILT training sessions and how best to overcome them. Can you think of any other pitfalls? Share them with us.