Applying Maslow’s Hierarchy to Workplace Learning

Applying Maslow’s Hierarchy to Workplace Learning

Creative trainers who apply brain-based learning research to design, develop, and deliver their content recognize that there is more to sharing information with adults than just being a subject matter expert. As a facilitator of adult learning (andragogy), you must also be a student of human nature and understand what motivates learners and how they best gain, retain, recall, and use what they learn. So let’s take look at the idea of Applying Maslow’s Hierarchy to Workplace Learning. Applying Abraham Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs Theory of Motivation to Workplace LearningDr. Abraham Maslow studied the workplace motivation of employees in the years following World War II. His research has been referenced and adapted many times over the years. From a workplace learning perspective, you can use the five levels of motivation that Maslow identified to focus your efforts on encouraging learners to accomplish established learning goals and to reward them for successes.

Applying Abraham Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs Theory of Motivation to Workplace Learning by The Creative Trainer

The following are the five levels of need (from lowest to highest) in Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs along with ways that you can address each level for your learners. As Maslow stressed, the basic needs must be fulfilled before any other level can be attained because the first level involves basic survival issues.

Basic/Physiological Needs

Maslow realized that people need to deal with survival needs before they move on to any other level of need. If they do not have the necessary food, clothing, water, shelter, and other crucial elements to survive, they are not likely to be concerned about learning new skills to qualify them for future jobs.

Training and development professionals typically address basic needs by providing such things as food and water throughout a session, allowing regular restroom or comfort breaks (at least every 60-90 minutes), and providing an adequate lunch period with nutritious food. They use instructional system design (ISD) strategies to create training programs and class content that add value and that will help learners maintain their current jobs and ultimately move on to higher-paying ones that will increase the amount of money they have available to satisfy basic needs.

Safety or Security

To address this level of the hierarchy, you must consider physical as well as psychological safety and security.

As a workplace learning professional you can do common sense things like making sure that the environment contains no safety hazards, such as equipment wires that are not taped down, broken furniture, boxes that can cause accidents or equipment that might fall and injure someone.

You can also provide mental security by stressing that the learning environment is a “safe” area in which they should feel free to ask questions, offer ideas, disagree, and explore issues that they have related to the topic without the feeling of intimidation, embarrassment or that someone will report back to their boss or human resources (assuming information disclosed does not violate policy or law or is not threatening). Also, explain how the material covered will assist learners to become more effective and efficient in the workplace or other situations, thereby helping to solidify their position in the organization as a knowledgeable, skilled employee or individual.

Social/Belonging

This level of Maslow’s theory deals with love, acceptance, friendship, and companionship. As a workplace learning professional or facilitator you can address the need that many people have to socialize and feel part of a group by designing programs that have a number of opportunities for participants to interact with you and other learners. You can also include a networking period before or after training or class or have a group luncheon where learners can share ideas and commune. This might even be a “working lunch” in which participants are given assignments to find out things about others in the group to solve problems.

There are literally hundreds of books and articles available to offer training activities that can help get participants actively engaged, networking, and brainstorming ideas during a learning event.

Esteem/Self-Esteem

When people are at this point of Maslow’s hierarchy, they are focused on personal ego, what others think of them, self-respect, achievement, and receiving recognition for efforts given. Most people want to be respected and appreciated by others.

In a learning environment, you can address the esteem/self-esteem need by deferring to someone’s expertise or knowledge, recognizing accomplishments, and otherwise providing an environment where learners can feel the satisfaction of having others applaud accomplishments. You can also build in little accolades during training in which participants cheer or applaud the efforts of someone who accomplishes something, offers a solution, or otherwise does something worthy or group recognition. A simple round of applause for a good response might be appropriate from time-to-time to meet this need.

Self-Actualization

This is what the old U.S. Army slogan of “Be all you can be” was all about several years ago. Their premise was “Join us and we will provide you with the tools and support to reach your maximum potential.” To this end, as a workplace learning professional, you must identify what motivates adult learners and where they hope to go as it relates to the level of achievement in your sessions. Then, help them get there. This can be done through instruction, coaching, mentoring, and providing tools and resources to allow them to succeed in implementing what they have learned in training on the job.

The key to successfully applying Maslow’s theory or any other motivation concept is to remember that what motivates one person does not necessarily motivate another. In fact, some motivators might actually de-motivate an adult learner.

Consider all learners when designing and using strategies in your sessions. Make sure that you provide a wide spectrum of rewards, incentives, and opportunities so that you appeal to all levels of learning need.

For more ideas on how to address learner needs and build in elements related to brain-based learning research, get a copy of Training Workshop Essentials: Designing, Developing, and Delivering Learning Events That Get Results and The Creative Training Idea Book: Inspired Tips and Techniques for Engaging and Effective Learning.

The Trainer’s Role in the Adult Learning Environment

The Trainer’s Role in the Adult Learning Environment

Your role as a facilitator of knowledge exchange is to ensure that your adult learners “get it.” Anything less means that you failed to meet their learning needs. You can have all the knowledge in the world between your ears; however, if you cannot effectively communicate it in a way that allows your learners to “gain it, retain it, recognize and recall it and use it,” they will likely leave the room feeling cheated.

The Trainer's Role in the Adult Learning Environment

To ensure that there is a transfer of learning from you to learners during training, and ultimately to the workplace, you must act as a conduit in the knowledge exchange process. Your challenge is to make everything you do learner-centered since your participants are the only purpose for your being there. Without your learners, you are not needed in the learning environment. To accomplish all this, actively engage learners from the beginning of the session or workshop and continue to do so at various points throughout the session. Give them information, let them experience and apply it, and then review the information or concepts periodically.

The key to effective learning is to not only provide information but also show participants how to apply it outside the classroom. Do not assume that they will get it on their own since they might be distracted, confused by your approach or explanation, or simply may not understand a key point. Give examples, build in activities where they can discuss and process information (small group discussion, problem-solving, role-play, demonstrations, and open-ended question forums) to draw them in and verify that they grasp your meaning.

Above all, when you design and deliver information, apply brain-based learning concepts such as motion, novelty, sound/music, color, and engagement to maximize learning potential.

The Trainer’s Role in the Adult Learning Environment by The Creative Trainer – Robert W. Lucas, Awarding Winning Author, and Blogger

For additional ideas on how to effectively design brain-based learning events, actively engage learners and reinforce key concepts while helping ensure positive learning outcomes and transfer of learning, get copies of Training Workshop Essentials: Designing, Developing and Delivering Learning Events That Get Results, The Creative Training Idea Book: Inspired Tips and Techniques for Engaging and Effective Learning, and Energize Your Training: Creative Techniques to Engage Learners.

Creativity Quote – Maya Angelou

Creativity Quote – Maya Angelou

Adding brain-based learning strategies into training sessions by engaging your creativity in the design, development, and delivery of program content is a perfect way to engage adult learners.

Many trainers and adult educators shy away from building in activities, games, novelty, and other fun factors for fear that they might be seen as frivolous or a waste of time. The key is to ensure that everything that you use, do, or say in your session has a purpose and is focused on accomplishing stated learning objectives.

Creativity Quote – Maya Angelou by The Creative Trainer – Robert W. Lucas, Awarding Winning Author, and Training Industry Blogger

I have been using accelerated or active learning strategies and sharing ideas with other trainers and adult educators in professional development programs for over four decades will success. Using such elements not only engages learners and makes the program content more fulfilling for them, but it also keeps me mentally alert and engaged as I design new processes and monitor their outcome in the classroom.

As Maya Angelou said:Creativity Quote - Maya Angelou

For ideas and strategies on ways to use creativity in you adult learning sessions through the application of brain-based and adult learning research get copies of The Creative Trainer: Inspired Tips and Techniques for Engaging and Effective Learning; The Big Book of Flip Charts: A Comprehensive Guide for Presenters, Trainers, and Team Facilitators; Energize Your Training: Creative Techniques to Engage Learners; and Creative Learning: Activities and Games That Really Engage People.

Learn This Adult Learning Blogger – Robert W. Lucas

Robert W. Lucas is an internationally-known author and learning and performance expert. He specializes in workplace performance-based training and consulting services. Furthermore, he has four decades of experience in human resources development, management, and customer service in a variety of organizational environments. Robert Lucas was the 1995 and 2011 President of the Central Florida Chapter of the American Society for Training and Development (ASTD).

Robert W. Lucas has lived, traveled, and worked in 28 different countries and geographic areas. During the past 40 years, Bob has shared his knowledge with workplace professionals from hundreds of organizations, such as Webster University, AAA, Orange County Clerk of Courts, Walt Disney World, SeaWorld, Martin Marietta, all U.S. military branches, and Wachovia Bank. In addition, Bob has provided consulting and training services to numerous major organizations on a variety of workplace learning topics. To contact Bob visit his website at www.robertwlucas.com or his blog www.thecreativetrainer.com.

Six Factors Affecting Active Learning

Six Factors Affecting Active Learning

Active, brain-based, experiential, and accelerated learning are terms used for training initiatives that involve getting learners to become active participants in your sessions. Various theories and research related to adult learning and brain-based learning indicate that through active involvement, participants become more vested in the session outcomes and are more likely to gain, retain, recall and use what they experience.

Six Factors Affecting Active Learning

Six Factors Affecting Active Learning by The Creative Trainer – Robert W. Lucas, Awarding Winning Adulting Learning Author

Consider the following factors when you sit down to create activities and initiatives that will involve and stimulate your learners.

Audience Makeup.

Ensure that you choose activities and content that are appropriate for the group you will be facilitating. Some activities (e.g. role-play) work best when participants know one another well or are comfortable with one another. Talk to program sponsors and/or participants in advance when possible and before you design your content and activities in order to determine who will comprise your audience.

Participant Knowledge and Experience Levels. 

To successfully build on what learners know, you must first determine current capabilities. You can do this through a training needs assessment process that is part of a standard instructional systems design (ADDIE) process. Also, ensure that the planned activity suits the audience level (e.g. frontline employee, supervisor, manager, or executive). Otherwise, you can easily either intimidate or bore your learners with your planned activities.

Desired Involvement.

Decide how, and to what extent, you want to involve participants. While much self-discovery is possible, you will need to intermingle your own involvement with that of your learners.

Available Time.

One mark of a professional creative trainer is to be able to accomplish established learning objectives and planned activities within the allotted timeframe in a seemingly effortless manner. When selecting activities, ensure that the time limit set is realistic and allows for successful completion and debriefing without intruding on other planned program segments.

Training Venue.

Take care to select a facility that has space and equipment needed to conduct planned activities. When possible, actually visit the site so that you can visualize layout and activities. Also, talk to the people who will do the room set up for the session to ensure that they understand your needs. Do not count on a third-party relaying your needs to setup people.

Group Size.

Choose activities that are appropriate for the size of your audience and ensure that co-facilitators are planned if necessary.

If you effectively plan and oversee the activity process, chances are that learners will feel a sense of accomplishment and that learning will more likely occur.

Learn This Blogger – Robert W. Lucas

Robert W. Lucas is an internationally-known author and learning and performance expert. He specializes in workplace performance-based training and consulting services. Furthermore, he has four decades of experience in human resources development, management, and customer service in a variety of organizational environments. Robert Lucas was the 1995 and 2011 President of the Central Florida Chapter of the American Society for Training and Development (ASTD).

Robert W. Lucas has lived, traveled, and worked in 28 different countries and geographic areas. During the past 40 years, Bob has shared his knowledge with workplace professionals from hundreds of organizations, such as Webster University, AAA, Orange County Clerk of Courts, Walt Disney World, SeaWorld, Martin Marietta, all U.S. military branches, and Wachovia Bank. In addition, Bob has provided consulting and training services to numerous major organizations on a variety of workplace learning topics. To contact Bob visit his website at www.robertwlucas.com or his blog www.thecreativetrainer.com.

6 Strategies for Energizing Learners and Generating Enthusiasm

6 Strategies for Energizing Learners and Generating Enthusiasm

There are many ways to spark excitement, energize learners, and generate enthusiasm in your sessions. Take the time to search out and develop strategies and techniques that are innovative and require learners to think while having fun and enjoying their experience. So let’s take a look at 6 Strategies for Energizing Learners and Generating Enthusiasm!

Energizing Learners and Generating Enthusiasm

Here are six ways that you can help stimulate enthusiasm in your learning events.

6 Strategies for Energizing Learners and Generating Enthusiasm

1.  Be enthusiastic about your facilitation.

Through your own interest and excitement, you can help engage and stimulate learners. If learners perceive that you are just a “talking head” who is regurgitating memorized information or parroting what is on your slides, they will likely tune out early in the session and you will not regain their attention.

Keep your information and delivery format fresh by updating and adding to content and design on a regular basis. For example, if you deliver the same content regularly (e.g. new hire orientation), change the icebreaker or other activities that you use periodically. This will require you to stay alert and think about what you need to do, thereby keeping you alert and making your delivery seem new and more stimulating.

2.  Plan and deliver activities that add value.

Your goal is the overall accomplishment of learning objectives. Do not add activities or other content and training aids just because they are fun or you like them. Make sure that anything you do, say or use in your programs is relevant to session content, aids learning, and is tied directly to desired learning outcomes.

3.  Ensure that initiatives are well organized.

Take time to prepare and practice before learners arrive. One of the worst things that a facilitator can do is to stumble along, rely heavily on notes and training aids, and appear uncertain about what they should do or say next. Become proficient with the information and training aids that you will use and do not spend time learning while participants are present.

4.  Clearly and concisely deliver directions.

To ensure that participants get the maximum benefit from all activity in a session, take the time to explain what learners are to do. Since people are either visual, auditory, or kinesthetic learners (or some combination of the three) prepare instructions in several formats to ensure everyone gets what you want them to do. For example, instead of just verbally sharing activity instructions, put them in writing on a handout, flip chart, or slide and discuss them as you show the training aids. Leave the instructions on display during the activity so that learners can refer back to them for clarification if needed.

5.  Communicate the purpose and Added Value And Results For Me (AVAR-FM) of the activity.

It is crucial that learners have the value of what they are doing explained so that they will understand potential benefits. Tell them exactly what benefits they will personally gain from the information you provide.

Making an assumption that the objective of an activity should be obvious could be a serious mistake. Remember that people learn and process information differently.

6.  Solicit questions, comments, or suggestions.

Before participants begin an activity, take the time to ask if everything is clear and to determine if all their questions related to the activity be answered before they begin.

Throughout your session, you also provide multiple opportunities for learners to provide feedback and suggestions on how your facilitation of content or activities might be enhanced to add value. By effectively planning your session content and activities and setting expectations for learners, you are more likely to tie into learner motivation and generate enthusiasm for your programs. Since brain-based learning research shows that by actively engaging learners, you increase the potential for more effective learning and memory enhancement; your sessions will likely be better received.

6 Strategies for Energizing Learners and Generating Enthusiasm by The Creative Trainer – Robert W. Lucas, Awarding Winning Brain-Based Adult Training Author

For additional ideas on how to effectively engage learners during training and educational events, get a copy of The Creative Training Idea Book: Inspired Tips and Techniques for Engaging and Effective Learning or Creative Learning: Activities and Games That Really Engage People.

Learn This Blogger – Robert W. Lucas

Robert W. Lucas is an internationally-known author and learning and performance expert. He specializes in workplace performance-based training and consulting services. Furthermore, he has four decades of experience in human resources development, management, and customer service in a variety of organizational environments. Robert Lucas was the 1995 and 2011 President of the Central Florida Chapter of the American Society for Training and Development (ASTD).

Robert W. Lucas has lived, traveled, and worked in 28 different countries and geographic areas. During the past 40 years, Bob has shared his knowledge with workplace professionals from hundreds of organizations, such as Webster University, AAA, Orange County Clerk of Courts, Walt Disney World, SeaWorld, Martin Marietta, all U.S. military branches, and Wachovia Bank. In addition, Bob has provided consulting and training services to numerous major organizations on a variety of workplace learning topics. To contact Bob visit his website at www.robertwlucas.com or his blog www.thecreativetrainer.com.

Three Strategies for Making Activities Effective in Adult Learning

Three Strategies for Making Activities Effective in Adult Learning

Like any other successful portion of a training or educational event, you must design energizer activities effectively if they are going to effectively and accomplish your intended purpose when working with adult learners.

The following three tips can help make your next adult learning session more successful:

1.  Provide adequate room.

Often trainers and adult educators fail to think through the activities that they will use with their learners. As part of the session planning, think about how many people you will have, how many groups will participate and how much space you will need to conduct each learning activity. Obviously, if the activity is an individual effort where learners work on own and then report to the rest of the group, you will need less floor space. However, if you plan to get training participants up and moving to stimulate their brain neurons through active learner engagement, you will need to plan additional space.  Always factor in time and extra space when having them move chairs, tables or other items.

Three Strategies for Making Energizer Activities Effective in Adult Learning

2.  Allow plenty of time.

When planning energizers and other types of activities, a big mistake that some trainers and educators make is to underestimate the amount of time for setting up, participation and debriefing of an activity.

This is often very frustrating for adult learners, shows a lack of experience or professionalism on the part of the trainer or educator, and contributes to an ineffective learning experience. Once you explain an activity, provide materials and have learners start to accomplish the assigned task(s), step back, observe, offer appropriate guidance throughout, and let the activity run its course.

When you are creating a training agenda, it is better to plan too much time, than not enough. Learners should have time to experience the full impact of the learning objectives for the activity so that they can maximize learning outcomes.

3. Encourage risk-taking.

The final tip for making sure that your energizer activities are effective is to encourage adult learners to think outside the box and take risks in activities where problem-solving, decision-making and other situations where they individually or jointly look for solutions related to the session learning objectives are involved. For example, having frontline employees self-disclose an aspect of their jobs would likely be a low-risk activity for them.

However, you can bump up the level of risk and engagement by asking them to share something they like and dislike about their jobs and how they would fix the latter if they were in a leadershipThree Strategies for Making Energizer Activities Effective in Adult Learning position. Just be careful to set up a scenario appropriately so that the activity does not turn into a gripe session or become derogatory towards their supervisor or organization. Always focus on positives.

Making Activities Effective in Adult Learning by The Creative Trainer

You might use a risk-taking energizer for a variety of workplace-related topics or other pertinent situations on a session topic.

For additional creative training tips, techniques, and strategies that can assist you into turning your adult learning sessions into powerful training or academic events, get copies of Energize Your Training: Creative Techniques to Engage Learners or The Creative Training Idea Book: Inspired Tips and Techniques for Engaging and Effective Learning.

Using Brain Research to Enhance Adult Learning

Using Brain Research to Enhance Adult Learning

Using Brain Research to Enhance Adult Learning

Brain researchers continue to discover the importance of various factors on the human brain in an adult learning environment. When integrated with existing adult learning theory, this research can aid learners in potentially better mastering session content. To capitalize on neuroscientific research findings, you can design your learning environments in a manner in which participants have maximum access to information and flexibility to address their individual learning styles or modalities.

You should also plan activities in which they can best use their five senses to receive and process information. It is important that all elements of your adult learning environment complement subject matter as close as possible. Never use something that does not directly support the accomplishment of your learning objectives. To ensure that this happens to consider your audience, organizational culture, subject matter, and expected outcomes for the training.

Enhance Adult Learning

With these factors in mind, set out to create a learning utopia in which you address all the elements of brain-based learning to your fullest capability. Even if you have only indirect control over the room (e.g. a hotel or conference room) in which training will take place, you can still incorporate many of the concepts that brain researchers have found stimulate brain neurons and help create memories (e.g. color, lighting, sound, movement, novelty, and learner engagement).

The wonderful thing about being a creative trainer is that, through a little innovation, you can procure and use a variety of inexpensive tools to enhance your training. Often, for only a small amount of time and money (less than $50 dollars) you can obtain decorations, materials, and props that will add pizzazz to your classroom. In doing so, you can help to better attract and hold learner attention while relaying your thoughts and ideas to them. You can also reconfigure seating or modify lighting to better accommodate participants and their individual learning needs (e.g. sight or hearing impairments).

The key to enhancing and enriching your training environment is to add variety and novelty while fully engaging learners. Make it your goal to entice, challenge, raise emotion and stimulate their brains to a point where the transfer of training to the workplace is a natural outcome.

For additional thoughts and ideas on applying what researchers have discovered about the brain and how you might apply it in the design and delivery of adult learning events, check out Training Workshop Essentials: Designing, Developing and Delivering Learning Events That Get Results and The Creative Training Idea Book: Inspired Tips and Techniques for Engaging and Effective Learning.

Designing Effective Training Programs for Adult Learners from the Millennial Generation

Designing Effective Training Programs for Adult Learners from the Millennial GenerationDesigning Effective Training Programs for Adult Learners from the Millennial Generation

There are many factors to consider when designing effective training programs for adult learners from the millennial generation. Members of each generation have specific needs and expectations based on their background and experiences. Obviously, you need to conduct an individual training needs assessment of each adult learner rather than assume that certain characteristics apply to everyone in a given age group.

For members of the Millennial Generation (1981-2000), the following are general aspects of their generational period that may define what they need, want and expect in an adult learning environment. Never forget that each individual is unique and these are general characteristics related to the generation.

  • They grew up with computers and technology.
  • Their brains often move at a rapid pace with shorter attention spans when faced with tedious tasks (due to exposure to rapid-moving technology).
  • Desire training delivered at a fast pace.
  • Prefer learner engagement activities through multi-media, individual and group activity and a variety of learning strategies in training.
  • Often take an informal approach to many things.
  • I want challenging and meaningful tasks.
  • Often question things out of a true desire to learn how and why things are as they are.

Designing Effective Training Programs for the "Builder" GenerationTo better help members of this generation to succeed in a learning environment:

  • Use creative training strategies to create a fun, informal environment.
  • Provide an atmosphere in which learners have plenty of opportunities for exposure to technology.
  • Allow learners to work closely with peers.
  • Design activities in which participants have ample opportunity to share ideas and information.
  • Incorporate active learning or brain-based learning concepts into your session design.
  • Share the logic behind activities and processes so that they see how it will benefit them and can later be applied.

For more ideas on adult learning and working effectively with all learner types and generations, check out the following books: The Creative Training Idea Book: Inspired Tips for Engaging, Effective Learning, and Training Workshop Essentials: Designing, Developing and Delivering Learning Events that Get Results.

ASTD Handbook: The Definitive Reference for Training and Development, 2nd Edition

ASTD Handbook: The Definitive Reference for Training and Development, 2nd Edition

ASTD Handbook: The Definitive Reference for Training and Development, 2nd Edition

A big challenge for many trainers, adult educators in human resource development and related areas is that keeping up with current trends and issues in the talent development profession is time-consuming. Luckily, new resources such as the ASTD Handbook: The Definitive Reference for Training and Development, 2nd Edition provides a one-stop shopping source for ideas, techniques, and strategies related to various components of the training and development profession and areas of the ADDIE instructional design model.

ASTD Handbook: The Definitive Reference for Training and Development, 2nd Edition by The Creative Trainer 

In the latest edition of ASTD’s (now ATD) well-known resource, leading practitioners in many aspects of the profession share their thoughts and ideas, best practices and cutting edge strategies and techniques for making adult learning work. There is specific advice on how to turn your training sessions into dynamic, brain-based learning environments where adult learners can take what they learn and immediately apply it in the workplace.

For example, in a chapter on The Value of Experiential Learning, internationally known, award-winning author Robert W. Lucas and Kris Zilliox overview the experiential learning process from what it is, its history, how to implement it and a case study showing the process in action.

To get a better idea of how this dynamic publication can aid you and your organization in improving the way to design, develop and deliver adult learning events more effectively, check out the ASTD Handbook: The Definitive Reference for Training and Development, 2nd Edition.

About Robert W. Lucas

Listed in Who’s Who in the World, Who’s Who in America and Who’s Who in the South & Southeast, Bob Lucas is an internationally-known author and learning and performance expert who specializes in workplace performance-based training and consulting services. He has four decades of experience in customer service, human resources development, and management in a variety of organizational environments. Bob was the 1995 and 2011 President of the Central Florida Chapter of the Association for Talent Development (ATD).

Bob has lived, traveled and worked in 28 different countries and geographic areas. During the past 40 years, Bob has shared his knowledge with workplace professionals from hundreds of organizations, such as Webster University, AAA, Orange County Clerk of Courts, Walt Disney World, SeaWorld, Martin Marietta, all U.S. military branches, and Wachovia Bank. In addition, Bob has provided consulting and training services to numerous major organizations on a variety of workplace learning topics. To contact Bob visit his website at www.robertwlucas.com or his blog www.thecreativetrainer.com.

Use Creativity in Training to Enhance Adult Learning

Use Creativity in Training to Enhance Adult Learning

Use Creativity in Training to Enhance Adult Learning

Creativity comes in many forms depending on factors such as a person’s background, life experiences, and education. When working with adult learners, trainers can help enhance the learning experience by tapping into their own creativity and that of their participants.

Use Creativity in Training to Enhance Adult Learning by The Creative Trainer – Robert W. Lucas, Awarding Winning Author, and Blogger

The following are three techniques that you can employ in your own training design and delivery to potentially improve learning outcomes and aid in the transfer of training experiences to the workplace.

  • Apply brain-based learning research tenets to your learning environment by incorporating elements such as color, sound, light, nutrition, and fun in order to help gain and retain attention and stimulate brain neurons.
  • Build-in adult learning activities that get participants actively engaged in the learning process. Provide instructions and tools required for an exercise then allow learners to approach a problem or issue from their own creative perspective. You will be surprised at the variety of solutions that will evolve for a single challenge.
  • Use simple props and tools to get a point across or to reinforce key concepts. For example, if you are making a point about how one of your consulting firm’s processes or services addresses the multiple needs of a client, you could use a kitchen potato peeler to make an analogy. You might share that, like the point of the tool that can be used to dig down and expose a rotten spot (problem area) your step-by-step intervention can do likewise when searching for a solution. As with the peeler blades of the tool peeling back layers, your consultants use a structured question/answer survey that helps identify the true problem or issue when something is not working well. Finally, the scraper teeth can be used to fix or remove the spot just as your problem resolution approach provides a series of interventions or training to resolve an issue.

For hundreds of creative training strategies and brain-based learning techniques that address adult learning styles and can be immediately applied in your training design and delivery, get copies of The Creative Training Idea Book: Inspired Tips and Techniques for Engaging and Effective Learning