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What to Do? What to Do?

Jun 18, 2019

Regulations require that content must be covered during the entire time of training, but what if you run out of content and there is still time left on the clock?

Paul Wesselmann, a much enjoyed instructor at our recent Trainer’s Institute, suggests having a collection of activities that can be adapted and used for any training, should you find that you lack content. Any extra time should always be used to reinforce learning, practice new skills learned and provide opportunity for reflection on learned concepts. He likes activities that can be shortened or expanded according to the amount of time you need to fill. I caught up with him this week for a quick discussion and he shared a couple of examples. Paul said, “My first thought when I have some extra time is to expand the processing/engagement time. The right questions can unleash all kinds of conversation.”

“Toss out to participants, ‘Let's say you had to give a short report about what you got out of today’s session at an upcoming staff meeting of your peers...what might you talk about?’ Giving them some solo-time to write out a few notes, and then talking in small groups, can lead to a few people volunteering to share their "mini-report" for the whole group.” (This could also lead to participants going back and actually volunteering to give the mini-report at their staff meetings, triggering their own memories of what they learned and spreading that knowledge to co-workers, a win-win.)

“Also, a simple question like:

‘What is a problem that, if solved, would help increase your effectiveness in delivering this content in the classroom?’ can make effective use of extra time to get participants thinking about transferring the new knowledge back to the work place and ways to address any barriers.”

Karen Veeley
(Salt River Region)