TOP 5 tech training fails

by Chris PehuraC-SUITE DATA — 2024/02/05

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Before the training people are really excited. They really want to dig into it. But after the training, they’re no longer pumped and they’re just tired of all of it. Here are the top five tech training fails.

5 — Evergreen

When people roll into your training, they want the latest and the greatest. That’s what going Evergreen means. But in a lot of training, they’re not getting it. Instead, they’re getting content pulled off the web. Content generated by AI. Training shouldn’t be boiled down to just a link of URLs and then talking to a chatbot. You should be providing additional value to your training. People want the secret sauce. They want the secret. They want to be the ones in the know. They want the bleeding edge. They should be getting it. That’s what they paid for.

A big hurdle for going Evergreen is that trainers don’t listen to the feedback they get. When training doesn’t work or trainers are a poor fit. It is not the training’s fault. It is not the trainer’s fault. No, it’s the people being trained. They’re resistant to the training. They’re not ready to take the training. It’s not the trainers. It’s not the training. No, it’s the people being trained. This holier-than-thou attitude just stops things from ever being Evergreen.

You want to give them the secret sauce. You want to give them the bleeding edge. This is what you have to do. Find the top three experts on what you’re training on. Find out where they come from and their history. Determine their personalities and their priorities. Use all that information and construct something called a persona. A persona is a profile of a person or type of person that allows you to anticipate their wants and their needs. Use this to drive your training. Use this to stay for Evergreen.

4 — Actionability

When people are sitting in their chairs looking at you, they’re asking this question. Why am I here? They’re going to need to take your tech training and they’re going to need to act on it. They’re going to need to solve some specific problems that they’re dealing with right now. The problem is the training doesn’t do that.

Training tends to be very canned and not tailored to the organization. Language is just the smallest of the problems. Introducing foreign concepts from other industries like applying things from Pharma to Retail. That doesn’t make sense. And then there are some assumptions that trainers make about their audience and about the methodologies that they’re teaching which are a literal middle finger to their audience.

Your audience should know exactly what they need the training for. They should know exactly what they’re going to do once they’re out of that room. You want things to be actionable. Learn a little bit about the audience. Understand where they’re coming from, their priorities, and the type of work that they do. Use that to construct personas. Use that to drive how you deliver and design the training.

3 — Activities

When you’re delivering training, you need to make it engaging. This is why I like workshops. This is why I like drills. This is why I like playing games. It gets the audience involved. It gives the audience a warm fuzzy, a rah-rah, and get hyped. Training shouldn’t just go down to just sharing knowledge. Training should be making that knowledge exciting, providing an emotional connection to it. What you do while you’re in that room training should reflect what people will actually do within the organization. You are putting them through the boot camp of what they’re going to do once they’re out of that room. At the end of your tech training, you should see everyone in the room nodding their heads that they know exactly what they need to do.

2 — Assessments

Tests suck. No one likes them. No one wants to do them but you have to do them because you have to track how people are progressing through the training. You have to track if the training is sticking, so people have to do assessments.

The best type of assessment is having people working in groups. You give each group a project. You give all the groups the same project. The only difference is each group has to work under a very different set of assumptions. Once all the groups are done, they present what they did to the other groups. Then each of the other groups ask them questions and run comparisons between what the presenting group did and what they would do.

The secret sauce for tech training is to capture all these conversations and consolidate them into a single document and model. Then you shoot that to your audience, calling it a gift.

1 — Behaviors

When people come to your training they want to know what they’re going to change and what are they going to do differently. You better be ready to answer them. You can’t just focus on a high list priority of to-dos. You need to be a little more tactical in what you present and how you present your training.

The fastest pathway to change a behavior is by knowing how to ask the right questions, when to ask them, and how those questions change decisions. Once you stay on point with that, your audience will reach that aha moment. That’s when you know your training stuck.

0 — Things need to change

Your tech training should be giving you the latest and greatest. It should be giving the bleeding edge. It shouldn’t be just a copy out of chatGPT. Your training should be a boot camp. It should prepare people to be ready to apply your training in their actual real-world workplace. Just retaining the training is not good enough. People must change their behavior and be successful with what they’ve learned

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