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Making Training Innovative and Challenging


I have been asked to prepare a presentation on the difficultie and practical solutions to making training challenging and innovative. I am new to a training role and am not sure where to begin.

As far as difficultires are concerned I am thinking about lack of interest/lack of enagaement, not understanding properly what people need from their training, having trainers who are not properly skilled and being faced with very dry topics.

As far as solutions are concerned I am thinking about getting out and talking to people about what they need and the best format for delivery of training, getting suitable trainers both internal and external.

I am particularly stuck on the innovatiuon bit.

I am training in a law firm on technical topics as well as soft skills.
Vicky Aykroyd

4 Responses

  1. making training innovative and challenging
    Hi Vicky

    You say that you have to make a presentation on this topic. I’m wondering who you are presenting to and what is the purpose of the presentation?

    Having been the training manager in a large UK law firm responsible for technical and management training I have some experience of training in legal services.

    I have also tried many approaches to bringing training to life, making it interesting, challenging and, more importantly, aiding learning.

    Please feel free to contact me at [email protected] if you would like to have a chat about what you are being asked to do.

    best wishes


  2. Making training innovative and challenging
    Take a look at:
    Having trained lawyers myself I’d say that training generally needs to be intellectually challenging – like taking a real-life difficult case and getting them in groups to agree what the decision/advice should be.
    And I think innovation should extend beyond the training room – like getting them to Tweet their learning on Twitter.
    There are a whole host of potential difficulties depending on what you are trying to do but I would say the biggest one is getting them to bodly go where they have not gone before. This requires a careful blend of keeping your feet firmly on the ground (so the learning is useful and you come over as credible) whilst also pushing the boundaries (of their thinking and how they learn).
    Best of luck

  3. Focus on the process
    Hi Vicky

    You mention that you are stuck on the innovation part, and have unskilled trainers. I would suggest in addition to talking to people about what they want, you and your training team choose a training design process and use it to underpin whatever you decide to write, this gives a consistent house style and will eventually make writing material easier.

    A good book to start with would be Acceleraetd Learning For The 21st Century by Colin Rose, and Use Your Head by Tony Buzan – both these authors focus on the learning process and gives you a good understanding of how the human brain learns, essential to engage your delegates, especially good to know if the topic is dry.

    You and your trainers can read these books and begin to establish what will be your cohesive approach to learning design and delivery. Then get together as a team and thrash out some ideas for design; next run a pilot session with a group of people who will give you constructive feedback, and then do your final design (if you have the luxury of running another pilot, great!).

    The key really is to find an effective learning design process and stick to it, trainers and delegates alike will appreciate the consistency.

    Hope this is useful.

  4. Response to Vicky’s posting – making training challenging and in
    Hi there Vicky,
    Crikey, I sympathise. It would be all to easy to pile on tons of resources, links and information, but at this stage I’m mindful that what you actually need to end up with is a presentation in your new role. A neat way round this could be to do some interviews, asking people the same questions each time, and turn those into your presentation. You’ll also get some topline needs analysis done, which can be expanded later. If you can get the interviews recorded on an audio or video format, even better, so it can spice up the presentation.
    Two other points to consider: contact the Law Society as they have a range of resources and may be able to help you with the profession’s compulsory CPD. It would also be interesting to find out the top 3 business objectives at your law firm, so that you can have those in mind when prioritising needs for training.

    Good luck!



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