Adult Learners Aren’t Blank Slates

February 27, 2017 in Greg Owen-Boger, Posts for Buyers, Talent Development, Training, Video

In this video, produced by the Association for Talent Development (ATD), Greg Owen-Boger, Turpin’s VP, reminds us to acknowledge our learners’ past experiences.

Greg here with Turpin Communication. I think that one of the most important concepts that we need to understand for those of us in talent development is that adult learners are not blank slates. They have a lot of experience under their belt, a lot of successes, maybe a few failures. And they may be working with incomplete or inaccurate information. So, for us, it’s important to acknowledge this upfront. Doing so gives your learners’ peace of mind and it lets them know that you really appreciate their skill level. So whenever you work with adult learners, make sure that you acknowledge their skill level, their experience upfront, and that you’re not going to start from scratch, which they could perceive as a waste of their time.

Trainers: Establish Context and a Reason to Participate

January 23, 2017 in Greg Owen-Boger, Posts for Buyers, Talent Development, Training, Video

In this video, produced by the Association for Talent Development (ATD), Greg Owen-Boger, Turpin’s VP, discusses why providing context and reason to participate is important.

 

Have you ever been sitting in a meeting, a presentation, or a training session and wondered what am I doing here? What are we trying to accomplish? Of course you have and it happens all the time. And the reason for it is because the leader of that communication event just didn’t take the time to set the context for you.

So my colleagues and I always recommend stating what may seem painfully obvious to you. Here’s an example: Hey, thanks for coming out to the meeting today. We’re going to be going over the budgeting process so that when it comes to planning for next fiscal year, you’ll understand why the leadership needs so much detailed information so early.

So as you can see, it only takes a quick moment to provide that context and reason to participate. And trust me on this, it’s time really well spent.

Click to learn more about our training for trainers.

Executing the Learning Conversation

November 1, 2016 in Greg Owen-Boger, Posts for Buyers, Talent Development, Training, Video

In this video, produced by the Association for Talent Development (ATD), Greg Owen-Boger, Turpin’s VP, explains why training is a conversation, not a speech.

 

I was working with a subject matter expert recently and she came into the coaching session saying, “I know that what I’m doing in this three-hour onboarding program isn’t working.” She says, ” I do this all the time, but it’s not working and I need some help.” So I was talking with her and she said, “Well, you know, I’ve typed out my script. I’ve got it in the notes section of PowerPoint. I’ve printed it off. I’ve laminated and I’ve got all these things lined up. And, you know, the night before training, I read through my script and I get it in my head.”

The problem is, though, that training isn’t a speech or something to be recited. It needs to be more of a conversation. And as we were talking she said, “You know, I think I do my best teaching at the bar afterwards.” And I asked her to talk about that a little bit. She said, “Well, it’s conversational. I’m answering questions. I’m responsive to what the learners are interested in.” And I said, “Ding ding ding! That’s it. Let’s move that bar, figuratively of course, into the classroom.” And it made all the difference for her.

Be Careful with Activities

October 25, 2016 in Greg Owen-Boger, Posts for Buyers, Talent Development, Training, Video

In this video, produced by the Association for Talent Development (ATD), Greg Owen-Boger, Turpin’s VP, discusses guidelines for designing activities for Subject Matter Experts to deliver.

In my experience, if training is going to fall flat it’s going to be because of the activities. And let’s face it, they’re really difficult to set up and execute and debrief well. And that is especially true with folks outside of talent development such as subject matter experts.

So if you’re going to ask subject matter experts to execute activities, make sure that you make clear expectations for how to set them up. Explain that they have to make sure that the learners understand the on the job application and the relevance to them.

And, finally, offer them some suggestions for debriefing the activities.

Set SMEs (Subject Matter Experts) up for Success

August 23, 2016 in Greg Owen-Boger, Posts for Buyers, Talent Development, Training, Video

In this video, produced by the Association for Talent Development (ATD), Greg Owen-Boger, Turpin’s VP, discusses how to set Subject Matter Experts up for success when designing content for them to deliver.

 

My colleagues and I work with a lot of subject matter experts and one of the things we’ve come to learn is that the materials that are designed for them, the the slide decks, the leader guides, and so on, are rarely designed with their delivery in mind. Now if you’ve ever delivered somebody else’s presentation or training material you know how very difficult that can be. So I’ve got two ideas for ‘what to do’ and one for ‘not to do.’

First, always make sure that the slide title is rock-solid. It should be clear and concise and SME should look at that slide title and know exactly what you intended for him/her to say.

Second, think hard about the “so what” about each slide or each group of slides. Don’t ask the SME to figure it out. That’s too much work for them. So give it to them in the leader guide or even in the notes section of PowerPoint. That way they’ll know how to wrap up each slide or groups of slides.

Finally, the thing not to do is to script them. They’re not actors and we shouldn’t ask them to recite a script. Give them their talking points and let them improvise around them.

So there you have it: two things to do, one not to do.

Coach Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) to Understand Their Dual Role in the Training Room

August 17, 2016 in Greg Owen-Boger, Posts for Buyers, Talent Development, Training, Video

In this video, produced by the Association for Talent Development (ATD), Greg Owen-Boger, Turpin’s VP, discusses why Subject Matter Experts need guidance when asked to step into a training role.

 

“I think the biggest challenge working with subject matter experts in the training room is that they simply don’t understand their dual role. That is, of course, that of Subject Matter Expert, but also that of trainer. And once they understand that there’s a very big difference between the two, and that by wearing the trainer hat they need to provide relevance, context, and on the job application, they’re more likely to succeed. And, ultimately, they need to understand that it’s not enough just to say the words. Those words need to be heard and understood.”

Happy 70th Birthday, TD Magazine!

July 5, 2016 in Author, Dale Ludwig, Delivery, Greg Owen-Boger, News, Posts for Buyers, Talent Development, Training

We’d like to take a moment to wish TD Magazine a very happy 70th birthday!

TD Magazine is the flagship publication of the Association for Talent Development (ATD). As you may remember, Dale Ludwig and Greg Owen-Boger (Turpin’s leaders) co-authored an article, which landed on the magazine’s cover in the April issue earlier this year. The cover makes a guest appearance in the video below.

We’re so very happy to be part of this innovative and historic publication.

Miss the article? You can read it here: Dual Role: SMEs as Trainers in the Classroom

Join Greg at ATD International Conference & Expo!

May 18, 2016 in News, Posts for Buyers, Presentation, Talent Development, The Orderly Conversation

Are you heading to the ATD (Association for Talent Development) International Conference & Exposition May 22-25, 2016?

Join Greg Sunday, May 22 at 1:30 for The Orderly Conversation: Business Presentations Redefined.

Dual Role: SMEs as Trainers in the Classroom

April 4, 2016 in Dale Ludwig, Facilitation, Greg Owen-Boger, News, Posts for Buyers, Talent Development, Training

Association for Talent Development - TD Cover Article by Dale Ludwig and Greg Owen-BogerCongratulations to Turpin Communication’s Founder, Dale Ludwig, and VP, Greg Owen-Boger, on their cover article for TD Magazine, which is published by the Association for Talent Development (ATD).

Read the full article, published April 1, 2016 at TD.org.

The article is also available as a podcast.

 



Update May 2, 2016

View a webcast about this article. TD Magazine: 5 Ways to Help SMEs Facilitate Learning

 

Also… Read what Paula Ketter, Publisher, says in her editor’s note.

The cover article in this month’s issue stirs up some great debate in the world of workplace training: Subject matter experts as trainers or talent development professionals as trainers? There is no right or wrong answer, but there are some critical best practices that should be followed if you’re thinking about using SMEs to bring your content to life.

According to authors Greg Owen-Boger and Dale Ludwig, reliance on SMEs to be facilitators in the classroom “brings risk. Although they want to do well in the classroom, it is an environment outside their expertise. SMEs often do not understand that the delivery of information does not equal learning transfer.”