Being a health and safety trainer is kind of like being an actor: rehearsal is the key to success. However, the best actors and the best health and safety trainers share a commonality outside of the need for frequent rehearsal – they are both also skilled at improv!
Workplace health and safety trainers often have to change their game plan or what they rehearsed on the fly. They need to be skilled at very quickly rethinking their training strategies in order to best reach their audience. That’s no easy feat! Seasoned workplace trainers can accomplish these improvised changes to their rehearsed training so seamlessly, that the class is none the wiser.
Top 5 Adjustments
1. Trainers Change their Language
A well-rehearsed trainer has likely practiced saying the technical terms, explaining complicated concepts, and using proper terminology. So, what happens when the audience doesn’t understand the terms or language they’ve rehearsed? This can sometimes happen when the audience is ESL. Workplace trainers recognize this and adjust their language for that audience, simplifying it where required, and using additional visual cues as often as they can. Very often, trainers adjust their language on the fly to reach their learners more effectively.
2. Trainers Change their Approach
The way a trainer trains is fluid. A trainer may approach a difficult concept in a different way if they know that someone in their class has a learning disability that may make that concept difficult to grasp. They can switch approaches to problems or concepts in order to reach any participant. They normally switch approaches if they start explaining something and are met with blank stares – they will switch it up on the fly until they see nods, or other signs, of understanding.
3. Trainers Change the Test
Testing trainees isn’t about torturing them by making them write a test. It’s about ensuring that learners understand the safety concepts being trained. There is more than one way to achieve this. For example, sometimes a worker with low or no English literacy can verbally explain a concept. He or she is not incompetent simply because they can’t write their answers on paper. If a trainer can measure a participant’s comprehension in a way that works better for that person, they will do so on the fly!
4. Trainers Change the Activities
Some participants dread activities, but activities are important because they help to reinforce important concepts. However, not all activities go over well with all groups. Workplace trainers have to possess the ability to change activities on the fly! Sometimes, it’s as simple as adding an element of friendly competition, and other times, it’s a complete switch to something totally different, but something that still measures the comprehension of the learning outcome!
5. Trainers Change the Content Delivery
Imagine delivering WHMIS to workers. Now imagine delivering it to a room full of engineers. The delivery method and the way in which instructors speak to these different types of audiences causes trainers to adjust the content delivery style on the fly! For example, a room full of workers who deal with hazardous substances want to know how to control hazards and protect themselves from potential dangers. A room full of engineers may want to focus more on the properties of the chemicals. The content doesn’t change – but the delivery of that content does.
There are many circumstances that come up during training sessions that may cause a trainer to have to change their strategy or deviate from what they rehearsed. It is a good reflection of the trainer that can switch strategies on the fly to ensure that all learners take away the important safety concepts that they need to stay safe on the job. OSG can help workplace trainers learn to be effective.
Did you know that OSG has trained over 5000 successful workplace trainers? Trainers learn to deliver dynamic and effective programs when they take any of OSG’s Train-the-Trainer courses, which include a mandatory Train-the-Trainer Day where participants learn about adult learning techniques and effective program design.
Let us help you train your workplace trainer. You can call 1-800-815-9980 to speak to one of our Health and Safety experts or book your training online! View our full list of Train-the-Trainer courses today!
Written by Jennifer Miller | Curriculum Development Coordinator
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