How to Train the Trainer

In this post we’ll look at the essentials for any Train the Trainer course or programme. What should be included, how and why…

How to Train the Trainer
How to Train the Trainer
Why bother with a Train the Trainer?

Many people think that anybody can be a Trainer, it’s just a matter of getting up there and doing it. Of course, that’s not the case. It’s a profession, just like any other, and requires a specific set of skills, knowledge and behaviours that aren’t within reach of just anybody.

It’s well accepted that providing on-going development to employees is part of the path towards higher engagement.

We also know that the higher the levels of engagement, in an organisation, the more productive employees are. If they’re more productive then they are helping the organisation to be more profitable. Wins everywhere….

It’s not a gigantic leap to suggest that the better the Trainers are that manage employee development (either internal or outsourced), the quicker the path to success for all and with a much greater quality to boot.

So, what should be included in a TRAIN THE TRAINER COURSE?

The first thing you should do is make sure you’ve got the right people on the Train the Trainer course. As we’ve already said, not everybody has what it takes to support the development of others in an engaging, effective way.

Some of the great subject matter experts in their respective fields don’t have what it takes to transfer their expertise to others. We can teach them, they’ll improve, but if it’s not who they are, it’s not who they are.

Once we’ve got our group of; passionate, articulate, energetic, inspiring, knowledgeable, challenging, courageous, flexible, empathetic, creative, patient enablers of learning on the Train the Trainer we need to give them some content to get their teeth into.

A quick internet search will provide many examples of this and all should include:
  • Clearly identifying the requirements of the role of the Trainer.
  • Helping delegates to understand the full learning cycle and the benefits of employee development.
  • Recognise and overcome the barriers to effective learning at work.
  • Help delegates to understand the different ways people learn and how to accommodate these in a group situation.
  • Plan and deliver effective training using appropriate training materials and methodologies.
  • Show delegates how to use accelerated learning approaches that encourage learning retention.
  • Provide opportunities to build confidence by practising the delivery of effective structured training sessions.
  • How to make the technology work for you and not against you.
  • Share tips and techniques for overcoming difficult situations (or people) which can occur during training sessions.
  • Show how to evaluate the effectiveness of any training against predetermined objectives.
Of course, the above list just covers the essentials. All the best Trainers practice what they preach and continue to develop themselves long after they’ve attended their first ‘Train the Trainer’.

Other courses can give them more advanced techniques that they can keep in their metaphorical toolkits.

Practice won’t ever make perfect, but it will move them closer and they will always have the essential delegate feedback which gives a customer perspective on how well those particular needs are being met.


How to Build Rapport: 4 Techniques for Success

How to Build Rapport

When you are trying to develop rapport with others, make the Oxford Dictionary definition your mantra: “a close and harmonious relationship in which the people or groups concerned understand each other’s feelings or ideas and communicate well”.

What does it take to accelerate “close and harmonious” communication with those you want to build strong and trusted relationships? STL takes a look at some simple but powerful strategies that help us to build rapport.

How to Build Rapport
How to Build Rapport
First Impressions Count

As with many business activities such as Negotiations, the way we appear and present ourselves matters. Your appearance helps you to connect with people and to lay the foundation of the relationship.

Matching your image to that of the people you are meeting suggests that you are, “one of a kind”. Ensuring you arrive in plenty of time for the meeting will set the tone. This applies not only to the meeting but also to the relationship.

Non-verbal Communication Engages OTHERS

The value and impact that a skillful and natural use of gestures, eye contact, facial expressions and a dynamic voice can have, is key. In global business situations, smile from time to time and look people in the eye when you are speaking.

You may have an especially important point to make. If so, you could raise your voice, slow your pace, or add a physical gesture to emphasize it. Good posture is important to convey confidence and gives others a sense of confidence.

Mirror and match your counterpart

However, if you are only concerned with your own image and body language, there won’t be alignment with your counterpart, which could alienate them.

Remember harmony?

You can generate rapport through harmonious communication. That means watching how the other person acts and interacts and matching their style. Also, take note of their facial expressions and try to respond in kind.

If they lean in and nod as you speak, you could mirror that by acting in the same way and using affirmative statements to encourage them.

Finding Common Ground

Once rapport is established, don’t stop there. Whether you are making small talk, getting to know your counterpart, or in the cut and thrust of a serious discussion, identify common ground. This can help you to take the rapport-building process to the next level.

Exploring shared topics is something that naturally excites people because it very quickly leads to more common ground, common acquaintances, and surprises.

Most importantly perhaps, people like to talk about themselves. Topics of shared interest enable you to demonstrate genuine interest. This helps to overcome the hidden barriers and develop warm and reciprocal conversations.

In Summary…

Relationships take time to build. Developing rapport with others can help you make quick gains. By ensuring you make great first impressions, using engaging non-verbal and vocal techniques, matching your counterpart, and finding common ground you can build rapport quickly and lay a foundation for strong relationships.