Do not be limited by rules
Providing training is one thing, and making that training fruitful is entirely another. In a corporate setting, the trainer doesn’t have months and years to make learning work. Time is really of the essence here.
Training is different from a course in that training continues for only a day or two unlike a course, which may continue for months or even years.
As a trainer, your task is nothing short of Herculean. First of all, you have to cover all your materials in a short period of time, and you have to ensure that the participants take something away after the completion of the training session.
Someone who does that successfully today earns a living doing exactly that. Why? Because everyone isn’t good at it. It takes blood and sweat to develop that skill.
More often than not, it is not that you have to share, but how you share it. This task may become difficult or easy depending on how interesting or dull the training topic is.
The trainer needs to keep in mind that some topics are inherently interesting, whereas some others are just plain dull.
Being a trainer of language, I often have to deal with the difficulty of making a grammar session captivating.
Unfortunately, grammar is a topic which automatically puts off learners.
But you have to teach it somehow, don’t you? Especially when the trainees come to you in the hope of learning English from scratch.
There are a number of issues at play here. First, you have little to no time to teach a language in one day. It is simply not pragmatic.
Second, you can’t expect adult individuals to learn language the same way as children. Hence, even if you try to teach them grammar, they would not be as retentive.
So what exactly is the solution? Make the learning fun!
Doesn’t that make sense? Teach grammar, but do not be limited to just the rules. Let the trainees learn by using the language. Show them the grammar in use.
Find out what’s relevant for them and focus on helping them with those. Try to “teach” and you’ll spoil the session. This is something I learned the hard way. I tried to be traditional with the trainees and I simply got negative feedback.
A couple of days ago, I facilitated an English session again. This time it went differently. For the better. Simply cut the lecture and get to business. Have as many group activities as you can incorporate in the training.
This way, the learning will be less boring or not boring at all. Incorporate interesting and lively video clips and have them moving, laughing, and doing things. Believe you me, your experience with facilitating will never be the same again.
Nahiyan Asadullah is a corporate trainer of English and business communication. He has a master’s degree in Applied Linguistics and ELT from BRAC University.