Presentation, training, or delivering lessons is a skill. And like every other skill, it is something that can be learned.
What I will share with you are some steps and techniques that you can use to deliver a presentation that facilitates learning. These are largely inspired by the book ‘Creative Training Techniques’ by Bob Pike and by my own professional experience.
What you first need to understand is that excellent trainers or presenters do a lot of unseen work for that few hours of contact time that they spend with the learners. It might look easy, but there’s a lot of work involved. It’s similar to watching a play, enjoying a few hours of entertainment but without seeing the preparation. Let me take you through the end-to-end processes involved in delivering a presentation.
I will divide the process into three legs. The first is preparation, second is delivery, and finally, reflection. Even if you are not planning to run a second round of the same training, this reflection period is still crucial for you.
Preparation - The Big Chunk of Work
First, you need to make sure that you know the topic through and through, at least within the scope of the learning objectives, but preferably a little beyond the actual learning objectives. This helps establish your credibility. So research!
Then, you need to be very clear about what you want them to know, and what you need them to know.
What you want them to know will be your learning objectives. However, most of us already have prior knowledge of the subject or we have learned a similar concept. By knowing what your learners already know (whether they be the actual concept you want to teach, or a similar concept you can hinge on) will determine what you need them to know.
Your job as a trainer, or presenter, is to bridge the gap between what they know and what they need to know in order to meet your learning objectives.
Your next job is to be very clear what would motivate your learners to learn this gap. As a trainer/presenter, part of your job is to be able to motivate your learners. It is your business to understand their motivation. After all, learning happens when your learners are motivated.
According to Bob Pike, most learners tune in to WII-FM. (What’s In It For Me). If you can demonstrate to your learners that what you are sharing is important for them, and it will benefit them, you will find yourself in a middle of a very engaged and cooperative class.
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