You might be the best trainer in the world, but you are still only one person. Therefore, at best, you present one great opinion. The audience you teach will always be an eclectic mix of cultures, backgrounds, ages, and mindsets. They represent many different opinions of varying quality.
Wouldn’t it be great if you could leverage many great opinions?
The Problem with Lecture-based Training
People are different. They have different backgrounds and different needs. They take away different things from experiencing the same session. As a trainer, you cannot tailor your solutions to suit everybody.
In fact, if you do try and make your material appeal to everyone, it becomes generic, and participants will be more likely to dismiss or reject the training.
Secondly, non-social training means all the pressure is on the trainer to be engaging and entertaining.
You’d have to have a really strong, attractive personality to hold everybody’s attention, whether in classroom sessions or virtual sessions.
Thirdly, you miss out on cooperative and competitive elements, which are a huge boost to a trainee’s motivation to participate and can drive effective training.
Cooperation to Drive Learning
Group activities give participants something to do. Often, people become bored in classroom sessions because there is no variation – they just have to sit and listen, and soon they start fidgeting and becoming uncomfortable. Having an activity allows them to channel their discomfort into something creative and productive, which drives learning.
Not only that, when you put people in teams, it gives them a chance to work with each other. Often, those groups of people wouldn’t have worked with each other at all. Working in an unfamiliar team makes people focus and stay engaged.
The thrill of victory is one of the most primal feelings human beings have. Being able to win something makes our brain light up and feel good. Building some element of competition into your training will ensure you are able to energize the crowd.
It’s also easy to build competition into your session. For example, if you were to summarize the session in a series of poll questions, with a leaderboard tracking how many correct answers each participant has given, you now have a tournament which will give you a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winner.
If you add opportunities for social learning in your sessions, you will benefit strongly as a trainer. Not only will it reduce the pressure on you, but also allow participants to engage with each other, either in co-operative play or in friendly competition.