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Why Most Trainers will be Extinct Soon, and what you Should do About it

“Turn to page seven, but don’t read ahead”.

It’s one of the things you hear trainers say isn’t it? Turn to a certain page in the manual, read the instructions, but don’t go any further.

It’s a variation of asking a question, and then adding “If you know the answer, don’t say”!

What!!! Why do trainers do this? Why actively discourage people who might be curious, or might even know the answer, to get involved? I think it comes from a previous age, a time when the trainer “knew stuff” and the delegates were there to listen to what the trainer told them. One way. Passive. The Trainer shall speak, and the delegates shall write it down.

Even worse I believe is that many training organisations still charge for what is now freely available information on the internet. Seriously – you can look online these days and pretty quickly find a range of resources, all free, on any given topic. If you are still paying your training supplier to repackage versions of the GROW coaching model, or trot out yet another Mehrabian Communication pie chart – the question has to be asked – what “value add” are you paying for?

To me the training industry needs to catch up with the modern world in the way that music and music video has. You can now watch and listen to live and pre recorded versions of whatever your favourite artists are to your hearts content. Of course the music industry has realised that their “value add” comes from the scale and excitement of a live show. And for that reason live shows have seen their prices increase massively.

But training still seems to work on the basis that the Trainer knows best, and thats the way the industry works.

I’m challenging that. I say that the value add in this business has to be the “HOW” that we as professional trainers can add to the delegates understanding of the training models and theories we use.

I say we should give them those ideas for free, in advance of the session when possible, and then use our time together to find ways to actually use the content. I say if someone knows the answer, we get them to explain – someone else’s voice, a peer of the audience is a new engaging point of interest to the audience, And above all lets get past the “don’t read on” mentality – I believe we can encourage our audiences to use the content they can access on their devices to make live training more rich, more layered and ultimately more useful.

And when a trainer tells you not to answer, or not to read on, I say its time that approach became extinct.