Tips For Admins
Who Train Others
Admins are frequently asked to train others on new software applications. Here are some tips that might be helpful to you as you plan that next training session.
Treat the audience as adults. Adult learners have different needs and expectations than “kids.”
The more the audience is involved in the training, the better.
Survey them and find out what they know already, what they need to know, and how they will be using the technology. Adults want practical, “use-it-now” info.
Avoid lectures. Get the group to participate as much as possible. People learning by doing, not hearing about doing.
Teach them what they want to know to do their jobs, even if you have to deviate from your plans.
Get them out of the work setting for the training (at least get them where there won’t be interruptions or where they will be thinking about unfinished work). If you can’t do that, insist that all phones be turned off or forwarded.
Get the managers to support this training. Meet with them first and share an outline of the sessions. Let them know what you intend to accomplish and by when. Remind them that there will be a lag time where employees are learning how the system works – encourage them not to expect overnight results.
Match up the quick learners with the slower learners. It’s also good to have this connect ongoing after the training session. So if the slow learners need help or have a question, they can go to a colleague (and not all come to you).
Have good detailed handouts that take the group step-by-step though the training. But insist that they also take personal notes.
Provide them with help desk phone numbers and web sites where they can get additional support after the session.
Get an “assistant” if the training is hands-on so that person can circulate and troubleshoot as you explain.
Get a big screen projection system, even if you have to rent one for the day. Don’t have folks crowd around a small image. They need to see you doing the moves – equally true if you have computers for all the audience members.
People will learn best if they have hands-on. If you can’t commandeer a room and move in a few computers for the group training, consider going to a college or tech school and renting a computer lab. Everything will be set up and networked nicely and staff will be on hand to help you with any glitches. Believe me, it is worth the money (it’s also off-site and people see it as a day out and are away from their workplace interruptions).
Do follow up after the training. E-mail them a questionnaire to see what problems they are having, what additional info they need and how their work has improved as a result of the training. It’s an excellent move to schedule more training in the future!
Many admins move from administration
into the training field. Apply these techniques successfully and you might find
a new career for yourself!
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