The following are 22 simple but powerful concepts you don’t usually hear at a train the trainer course that can really help you be more prepared and shine as a trainer.
1. You are not in class to be a star, but to make your learners shine.
2. Politics and religion have no room in the training room.
3. Sometimes your learners will know more than you do.
4. You don’t have to be perfect. Your learners will understand.
5. You have to be in class at least one hour before start time.
6. If you don’t love training, find another job.
7. Don’t make flight plans assuming your class will always end on time.
8. Find someone who has taught the class before and take him or her to lunch- your treat.
9. People don’t usually argue with their own data: Get your learners to generate answers and solutions.
10. There is such a thing as a stupid question. Your job is to act as if it’s not.
11. Never blame your content. Always remember the golden rule “It’s not what you say it’s how you say it!” There is no boring training, only boring trainers.
12. Breaking people into small groups can be tricky. It requires both math and communicating the math to others. Asking twenty people to “get into five groups” is not the same as asking them to get into “groups of five.” Not being clear about this can cause a 5-minute disruption, rattle you, and annoy your participants.
13. Good platform skills are necessary, but insufficient. If you are just an entertainer with no real understanding of the realities of the job, people will dismiss you. (And they should.)
14. Know your audience. Different audience types need different approaches. The formality, dress, and level of familiarity you might use with a group of senior managers might be different from what you would use with a group of millennials.
15. Deal with reality: Plenty of breaks, nothing boring in the afternoon or after lunch, lots of time for questions.
16. In every group of learners, there’s always one who wants to prove you wrong.
17. Expect learners to want and expect to leave early.
18. Be ready for the mid-afternoon or after lunch slump – interject with energizing activities.
19. Always be prepared for something to go wrong.
20. Always take an extension cord, masking tape, extra set of markers and evaluation sheets.
21. Find and develop your unique learning style.
22. If what you’re doing isn’t working, try something new.