Mistakes That Trainers Commit


In our previous blog, we discussed how to become a good trainer. We emphasized the need to have passion as the first step. Just for the sake of performing your job or just to earn a living if one takes up training as a profession, I am sure they won’t do justice to their career nor to their participants. After that we spoke about the necessity of communication skills, presentability, audience connect, subject matter and basic design skills. One of  the qualities of becoming a good trainer is to learn all these skills; another way of learning is by understanding the likely mistakes that could creep into the training delivery and consciously avoid them. Today’s blog highlights some of those often committed mistakes. Some of the mistakes look silly but still we witness them.

Mistakes in communication:

–> Some trainers use an accent while speaking English that is so much alien. We can make out that that is not their natural accent; but still they try to use it thinking that it will impress the audience. While doing so, they make themselves so funny that participants find it hard to control their laughter.

–> Simple typographical mistakes on the slides are another often committed mistake. It may not have serious consequence but it unnecessarily diverts the attention of the audience. Some smart participants may even point out openly creating embarrassment.

–> A bigger mistake is when trainers write on the board or chart with wrong spellings. It exposes their poor sense of English words.

Mistakes in presenting oneself:

–> One trainer opened the session with a statement, “You are all much more experienced and I do not know about your industry” which instantly created a disregard among the participants. He possibly thought that he could present himself with humility, but that is not the way to open the session and positioning oneself. He should have established his personal credibility as a trainer to gain respect.

–> Going onto the other extreme, some trainers make their self-introduction so pompous and boasting that it can over the top. It is safer to tune the introduction based on the profile of the audience.

–> Inappropriate dressing is another mistake while presenting oneself. Either overdressing or completely informal attire is not good for a trainer. One must remember that what one wears creates the first impression.

Mistakes in dealing with audience:

Missing to study the audience profile is the biggest mistake. If you as a trainer prepared to deliver training to juniors, and one finds more seniors among the audience, you can surely expect a few walk-outs.

We often find trainers making mistakes while responding to questions. When one participant asks a question, some trainers tend to walk close to that person and engage in a discussion, not realizing that the rest of the participants are completely lost and losing interest. A good trainer always remains connected with the audience even if the question is raised by one participant.

Mistakes in subject knowledge:

–> Lack of depth in the training subject will surely expose the trainer. He or she will not be confident to face the audience. They demonstrate haste in closing any discussion because any extended debate will not expose their ignorance.

–> Under preparation is mostly the mistake that some trainers commit; they will appear to be superficial and fail to engage the participants.

–> A bigger mistake is to bluff about the subject; one might be lucky to get away if none among the group know the subject. Imaging how embarrassing it would if someone points out that you don’t know the subject and that you bluffed. It may be safer to admit lack of knowledge instead of presenting a false picture.

Mistakes in design:

–> For many trainers, delivering a training program means flipping through a bunch of slides and speaking about them. These days, it is a sure way of putting the audience sleep.

–> Failing to address different learning styles and being unaware of the learning process is another serious mistake. Such training seldom creates any impact.

–> Some other trainers reduce training to mere bunch of games; at the end of such training, participants will say that training was enjoyable but we didn’t know what we learnt.

Obvious conclusion is to take note of these likely mistakes and not to commit them! 

Article – “Mistakes that Trainers Commit
By: Dr.Raj, 
Published in HR Mirror, Hans India.
Follow Dr.Raj on Twitter @drraj29

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