Delivering Transformational Training Under Pressure

In: BlogDate: Jun 05, 2013By: Nicky Stone

Friday was such a joy for me. It was the final day of our TPMA Train the Trainer course which culminates in an assessment to be accredited by the Learning and Performance Institute.

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Do I like watching my learners fret and worry with nerves? No, but I absolutely love it when they put in an amazing performance. Selfishly it is vindication for me to see all the skills and techniques I have taught being put into practice.

But the real buzz is seeing how delighted they are with what they have achieved in a short space of time. “I just feel so confident, I could REALLY see that they were learning” said one of them afterwards with a huge grin on her face.

So many of the final training sessions are excellent but the ones that truly make my heart soar are the ones which are completely transformed from the first sessions I see. So many experienced trainers are basically delivering presentations – telling and showing. These trainers need new skills, but more fundamental is discovering their passion to help others develop; being open to changing the way they do things; and putting their learners at the heart of everything they do. At Happy we call this Learner-Focused Training.

Demonstrating new skills under pressure takes a lot of nerve and a positive state of mind. To help the group prepare for their assessment we discussed the state triangle. Of course as a facilitator you can also use this to think about creating the right state in your learners. There are three key factors affecting your state.

As a facilitator your FOCUS must be on the learners and what’s in it for them. LANGUAGE is not only about the words you use out loud but also the voice in your head. Positive self-talk can build your resilience in any situation, our group thought about words or short phrases that made them feel good. Finally, PHYSIOLOGY is all about what your body language tells your mind.

If you haven’t already watched it, check out Amy Cuddy’s brilliant TED talk ‘Your Body Language shapes who you are’ to find out about quick power poses that can give you a welcome performance boost.

Before their training sessions I noticed each of my delegates nip to the loo to do their power pose and positive self-talk and when they came back they were firing on all cylinders! Not only did they all pass but 75% with Merit!

Whether you are a facilitator, learner or simply someone that needs to be on top form, take a moment to think about your Focus, Language and Physiology. Let me know your tips for giving yourself a headstart in the comments below.

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Nicky Stone

Nicky has been a senior facilitator for over 16 years. Her leadership purpose is to support people to reach their full potential, and this has driven her internally as part of Happy’s senior leadership team. It has enabled her, through her work every day with clients, to facilitate senior leadership programmes and personal development events. Nicky also has a proven track record at leading on large projects and inspiring others as a speaker at conferences.

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