Training. We do it a lot, not often enough, but a lot. The question is, what are we producing with our training programs? Winners or losers?
The adage “practice makes perfect” couldn’t be truer. Unfortunately, most of us only see the beneficial side of this statement. That is the part where we are winning with our training. That we structure our training properly and everybody does everything right. That we are successful. What we don’t see is the negative side of training. The twisted part where our training is perfectly incorrect/deficient/off and we produce perfect failures every time. Losers. The part where we fail to see the misstep and our training ingrains the bad habit in the trainee and we produce losers.
As trainers, we have to become mindful of our intent. I have seen trainers that want to show that they are superior so they make their trainees look bad or fail at exercises. All this produces is an ingrained sense of defeat and failure in our trainee. As a trainer, we have to set up our trainees to win at all costs. We have to make the successful. To instill a sense of achievement in them so under real circumstances they have the confidence to get it right, to do it well.
Current problems with training
The biggest problem with training is most of us have resorted to death by PowerPoint. The second problem is that we sit in a classroom and listen to a talking head drone on and on about a topic without ever role-playing, touching equipment, or interacting with the subject materials. This type of training lacks confidence and skill building capabilities. Sure it is great to get the ideas flowing and it certainly gets us thinking about things, but it doesn’t allow us to see that we can be successful by doing.
We have to remember that we sink to our level of training. We will be our nature do what we have been trained to do under stress. So, talking about sexual harassment in a classroom is great, but when the stress of an unwanted come on actually presents itself, our ability to say “no” may not be there. In more extreme situations like natural disasters, our ability to care for the wounded, pull children out of burning buildings, sandbag for a flood may not be there. Believe it or not, dialing 9-1-1 may actually be difficult to do under stress. There have been reported cases of people forgetting to dial the 9 or 7 for the outside line before dialing 9-1-1.
Set trainees up to win
We must set our trainees up to win. Not that I want to equate us to dogs, but in dog training, we must always set up our canine to win, to be successful. If not, they lose interest and won’t learn the skill. Usually, we start with a success, introduce a new skill, then end with a success. We can use this dog training technique with our trainees to ensure success.
As a professional trainer, you are only a good trainer if your students go out the door winning. Showing them that you are smarter than them produces more failure; however, showing them where their flaws are and then teaching them how to overcome those flaws spells success. So, remember, train to win. Send everyone out the door winning and you will ultimately build better students and have fewer accidents and failures in the future.