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Some insights on „How to provide a good learning experience?“

Facts and Figures – Processes & Humans being more

A good learning experience is reached, if

  • something new is learned (the intended goal)
  • a new task can be successfully processed,
  • one can adopt learned to similar or new things
  • it is empowering, adding new impulses to life

The playing ground

In a good learning environment the given tools (software, hardware, learning material, additional information resources) help each participant to learn a specific issue by actually doing it. The software therefore must run smoothly and as intended.

Make sure beforehand that this prerequisite, besides others, is fulfilled. Otherwise you run into severe problems not to meet the desired results. If you find errors you can probably fix them or have time to get others involved to take a look into it.

You cannot handle everything on your own but what you can do is, be prepared to communicate and to address issues properly. It is a question of cooperation rather than a one man show. Cooperation includes the people in the „background“, the staff of the seminar management and the participants of the seminar.

The content

Make sure the goal is defined, understood and agreed upon. This usually has to do with facts, figures and processes to be learned.

Make sure you know the subject – Make sure the audience knows the subject.

It may sound obvious but it can happen that inhouse classes are the place where employees get first hand information for the first time, especially when major reorganisations in a company take place. In this case you may get confronted with anxieties and fears which is normal, as too many changes take place at once, letting people feel like loosing ground. You must make sure which kind of questions are part of the seminar or class and which questions have to do with the reorganisation or other issues.

This distinction in mind helps you

  1. keeping the seminar on track
  2. collecting the other questions for better processing during or after the „official“ part.

It has a positive impact on the learning experience, if done so.

The audience

Make sure you know your audience.  How to find out about it? – Ask.

If you dont know, who is involved you dont know whether or not you deal with a homogenous or inhomogenous group of people.

What is that?

A homogenous group is a number of people with the same level of knowledge and thus presumed understanding of a given issue. An inhomogenous group is a number of individuals with different levels of knowledge and understanding.

Example:

no knowledge in applying a software

some knowledge – basic

expert. Doing it for a long time.

You must know that. It doesn’t help you, the participant and your company if you stress the point that a certain entry level is obliged. If you know, you can organize information which suits these different levels better.  Please keep in mind that a given situation of mixed levels of knowledge and understanding is not a question of good or bad, and the answer is not to blame them or others.

Rhythm

Everything has it s own rhythm. So a group of people meeting in a seminar too. It helps to provide a good learning experience, if you ask your audience whether the rhythm of your voice suits them – too loud, too low, too fast, too slow? Or just fine? Question mark. Depending on the answers you can adust your behaviour. Do not underestimate this fine tuning.

Let every participant be part of the learning process

Invite everybody to take the chance to actively share their individual knowledge with their colleagues or fellow students. It adds value, if each participant communicates her or his learned achievements directly with each other.

Humans being more

A good learning experience exceeds teaching facts, figures and processes. It enriches people’s lives. Be respectful, empathetic, loving and caring – actually be human as the people you are dealing with are humans too.

If you read this line, I thank you for your patience hoping that what you read meets the topic: That you had a good learning experience. 🙂

You are welcomed to comment on this blog entry or add some of your experiences on how to provide a good learning experience. Thank you.

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2 Comments

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  1. Stefan Funk

    Hi Andreas,

    Thanks for sharing your perspectives.

    In terms of learning experience, you might also add “How to improve business impact”. At least for sales managers and people this is key to understand before opting in for a training session.

    Best,

    Stefan

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    1. Andreas Orthen Post author

      Hello Stefan,

      thank you for taking time to read and comment on the blog entry.

      You made quite a point with your suggestion to add “How to improve business impact?”

      It belongs in my view to the phase before actually deciding to attend a specific training session or seminar.

      I suggest: To help decision makers to answer this basic question, take utmost care to provide a meaningful description of the seminars content (maybe explicitly telling what will not be part of the seminar).  This should help to save time and money.

      It then adds to the learning experience possively.

      [I wonder how to send you “stars” here as I only see a “Like” 🙂 – But I’ll figure it out]

      Have a nice day

      Andreas

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