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7 Traits Great Corporate Trainers Share

17th Aug 2017
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The ability to train and develop employees is key to the success of any organization. Because of this, the role of corporate trainer has become exremely important and lucrative. Depending on where they work, corporate trainers are given the task of providing training on a wide variety of topics. In fact, the daily life of two corporate educators can be starkly different.

In spite of these differences, there are some core traits that all great corporate trainers share. Consider them if you are planning to chose this career path.

Smooth And Effective Delivery

The best trainers are talented public speakers. They have the ability to deliver the material in a way that is pleasing to their audience. Part of this is simply natural talent, but not all of it.

A good portion of delivering training material in a way that is smooth and effective is simply practice and preparation. Effective trainers rehearse their presentations until they are all but memorized. This allows them to speak to their audience in a natural manner, rather than focusing on their notes. As a result, their students are more attentive, and they get more out of the training session.

Subject Level Mastery

Corporate training is a particularly challenging job. Not only does the trainer need to have the talent to engage students and deliver material in a way that is effective, they must become subject matter experts. In corporations where a trainer may be tasked with teaching courses ranging from workplace safety to departmental regulations and procedures, this can be a daunting task.

Beyond thinking about the material they are presenting, trainers must also consider the questions they may be fielding. If they cannot come up with the correct answers quickly, that can impact their credibility.

The Ability to Pivot

Flexibility is a key trait. Nearly every trainer has experienced this. Their presenting a course to a group of employees. Then, they notice the sea of blank stares. This is when they realize, what they are doing isn’t working. The lessons aren’t sinking in. It happens to best of corporate trainers. The great ones know they have to learn to be resilient.

The difference between a great trainer and an average trainer is how they react in that moment. A great trainer will pivot. They will find an example. They will dig up an illustration. They will do whatever it takes to adjust their presentation, on the fly, so that their audience absorbs the material and is able to apply it in practical and meaningful ways.

It’s also difficult to predict when an unexpected question or remark is going to throw things off course. Part of effective training is knowing when this presents an opportunity to explore something important, and when it’s best to pull things back on course. This is yet another reason why flexibility is extraordinarily important.

Understanding of The Corporate Culture on All Levels

Trainers often have the task of delivering educational materials to various groups across the organization. This may include different departments, different levels of management, even different geographical regions. Their ability to teach effectively depends in large part in their ability to deliver in ways that are both relatable and relevant to the audience in front of them at any given moment.

Understanding the culture of the organization is fundamentally important. The best trainers get this. They know that not only do corporations have an overall culture, there are also micro cultures that exist in different business areas, teams, and locations. They know that a one size fits all approach is rarely effective. Instead, they take the time to learn about each audience. They ask questions such as:

  • What style of delivery is going to be less effective?
  • Am I going to have to overcome fear, uncertainty, or doubt about the material I am presenting?
  • Is there a possibility of resistance and resentment?
  • How can I make the material relevant?

Then, they take the answers to these questions and use them to curate the most effective learning experiences possible with the goal of ensuring that all students get the most out of the training that they receive.

Creativity And Energy

The most effective training presentations are infused with creativity. The best trainers use anecdotes, images, jokes, storytelling, and other methods to keep their audience engaged and ensure that the material is understood. They embed creative images and content in their handouts and instructional materials as well.

In addition to being creative, they also recognize the importance of being high energy. Corporate training subjects are often less than exciting. This is why having an energetic presentation style is important. It keeps students paying attention, on track, and engaged in the lesson.

Organizational Skills

Trainers rarely have the luxury of working on one thing at a time. On most days they are juggling the tasks of preparing and planning lessons on a variety of topics for a variety of audiences. Those that travel, must also stay on top of making arrangements and keeping track of their itinerary.

The best trainers have exceptional organizational skills. They use calendars, to do lists, and other tools to ensure that they stay on top of it all. Time management is a priority for them.

Empathy

Corporate training sessions can be a breeding ground for tension. Students may become frustrated if they aren’t picking things up as quickly as they like. They may be resentful and feel as if their time is being wasted. Sometimes, corporate training is needed because changes are being made and workers are asked to learn new ways of doing things. This can bring fear and  uncertainty.

Good trainers understand this. They identify groups or individuals who may be struggling, and they find ways to show empathy while still effectively delivering the lessons they are asked to deliver.

Corporate training is a challenging job. Great trainers must not only have subject level mastery, they must also be sensitive to the needs and challenges that their students face. They must be organized and prepared enough to give polished presentations, yet flexible enough to pivot when a challenge or opportunity presents itself.

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