big meal training

What Does A Great Big Meal Have In Common With Training?

Did you have a big meal at Christmas? How about Thanksgiving? After eating the delicious and colossal meal, did you think to yourself, “Wow, that was so yummy! I am so stuffed. I will not eat again for a long time.” Yet, you were hungry again the next day!

Training is often like that. A workshop may be equivalent to a big delicious meal. It is informative and hopefully entertaining (we learn better when we laugh, at least now and then). You are gaining some new insights. Your wheels are turning, and you are coming up with new ideas. You can’t wait to make them happen. All signs point at you (and your team) having a breakthrough.

Then your typical workday comes back. First off, you have to catch up on the work that didn’t get done while at the workshop. I will work on the breakthrough steps tomorrow. Tomorrow comes, and there is no time. This goes on for a week. Then two. Then you can barely remember what you were planning to do.

Have you experienced some version of what I’m describing? It takes an extraordinary level of self-discipline to follow up on insights you gain from a workshop. To have any chance of doing this by yourself, you need:

  1. A clear goal or set of goals (not too many at once)
  2. A smart but simple plan to get there – that involves establishing tiny action steps you can take on an ongoing basis
  3. A well-functioning time management system
  4. The willingness to schedule the tiny action steps you established
  5. Self-discipline/ the habit to follow through on the steps you planned with consistency
  6. A method for regrouping and getting back on track if things don’t go as expected

Almost no one has these six items on their own. I have worked with business owners, executives, and teams for 16 years. It is clear: Human beings need someone to help them do this. By the way, I need support for achieving my goals, too.

Let’s get back to talking about my analogy that training often happens like serving a delicious but gigantic meal. It is like drinking from a firehouse. Following up on what you have learned is quite tricky.

What Are The Options For Effective Training?

What is the solution? There are three:

  1. When you hire a trainer to do a workshop for your team, ask for ongoing implementation support. A regular session per video conference will do wonders for implementing what your team has learned. The trainer/coach leads a small group through the six steps we discussed above.
  2. Consider online training paired with regular live sessions. The participants get the material bite-by-bite. There is no sense of overwelm. Each person can view the lessons of the weekly module at their convenience. Participants and their coach discuss and implement the material during the live sessions (one per module).
  3. Hire a professional coach – or you are lucky to have a colleague or friend who will do this for free and has the skillset to do it. In my experience, most friends let you “slide” too quickly.

There is a time and place for each of these options. For example,

  • Option 1 works well for customized workshops.
  • Option 2 is excellent when online training about the topic you want training in and live accompanying support is available.
  • Option 3 is very effective in one-on-one scenarios and small groups.

The Key Takeaways

  • Training is a process, not an event.
  • Human beings need ongoing, capable support to follow up on what they learn in training and to be at peak of their potential. Getting that support is a sign of being smart rather than one of weakness.

I’m Curious

  1. Which goals do you have for next year? How about your team?
  2. Which training would advance you, your company, or your organization?
  3. What kind of suppport would be most helpful to make that training effective?

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