Remote Training – Engaging or Enraging?

Are you presently training through a screen sharing application (WebEx, GoToMeeting, etc.)? How great is to sit at your screen and interact with … no one. Yes, they’re out there, viewing your screen. But, are they really paying attention? Is your message getting through?

We’re all attempting to find a new normal, where we can provide training and guidance to a workforce that, for the most part, is sheltering in place and going a little crazy. So, how can we deliver and maximize the impact of your training content? Three things jump out:

1. Keep it short.
It’s difficult to stay focused for long periods of time under normal circumstances. Add in the fact that, for many, working from home is foreign, with myriad distractions, and you have a recipe for training disaster. Organize your content into manageable learning chunks, that are easily digestible. Keeping your presentations short and sweet will ensure that your message will hit and stick.

2. Keep it frequent.
Ideally, your interactions with your audience will not be long slogs that happen infrequently. We all know the retention issues we face when weeks and months pass between training interactions. To ensure that your content has staying power, tighten the time between your sessions and step up the frequency of your meetings. What was a 1 hour meeting every two weeks, might become three twenty-minute meetings in two weeks. Two great benefits to higher frequency meetings – 1. Your material gets “refreshed” more frequently and retention is enhanced. 2. Your audience will feel a stronger sense of community (important in this time of isolation).

3. Keep it fun.
Training is serious business. This doesn’t mean that it has to be drudgery. Keep a light touch on your presentation, sprinkled with any humor you’re capable of. Work at getting your audience to truly interact with your content and refrain from “spray and pray”. Gamifying your mode of content delivery will add fun, and ensure that your message is memorable. A memorable experience will help your audience remember and apply the information you’re presenting. Remember – working remotely isn’t a party (every day). It can be isolating and stressful. Adding a game to your remote training will provide your audience (and YOU) with a moment to take a breath and smile. Click HERE if you’d like to explore games in your training.

If I were to add a fourth observation, it would be: cut yourself some slack. It’s difficult enough to “be on” (engaging, motivating, inspiring, etc.) when you’re in front of an audience. It’s a completely different experience when you’re behind a computer screen. Do the best you can, and remember: we’re all out of our comfort zones, but we’re in it together.

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