Progress guidance is everything that allows training facilitators and participants to keep track of progress and reach learning goals. This is an integral part of our L&D programs – it’s about much more than KPIs! There are three main components:

  • Checkpoints: Short, individual review meetings between facilitators and trainees – a collaborative exercise, stimulating  discussions that significantly deepen learning
  • Coaching: Individual and Team sessions, enabling you to resolve immediate issues and often to transform them into opportunities for personal growth.
  • Self-assessment: Exercises that allow trainees to check that they have captured a concept
  • Feedback: Checks made before, on completion of and sometime after training encounters.

Checkpoints

A checkpoint is a meeting where a trainee demonstrates what they’ve learnt – a theory test – and how they use their new skills – a case study. However, this experience is not like being in a school exam or a courthouse!

Progress guidance is everything that allows training facilitators and participants to keep track of progress and reach learning goals.

For one, a checkpoint is more likely to take place by telephone. Furthermore, trainees are not in front of examiners or judges. Rather, they are assisted by two coaches, whose job it is to ensure that the trainee is in a good position to exploit what they’ve learnt.

So it’s really a collaborative exercise, where a theory test and case study are used not only to demonstrate what the trainee is capable of, but also to stimulate a conversation that significantly deepens learning.

Our experience of using checkpoints to support Training Encounters and, above all, Independent Learning, has been extremely positive. We strongly recommend that you consider them for your Learning and Development program.

Self-assessment

Self assessment

Even before you get to a checkpoint, you probably want to take advantage of the self-assessment tools in our Learning and Development packages. These are simple enough. They generally take the form of exercises for which immediate, automatic feedback is generated, allowing you to verify that you’ve got the right idea.

If you are more ambitious, and especially if you have the opportunity of working in groups, then we can offer a large number of domain-specific exercises, including roles-plays, for you to work with.

Feedback

For classroom training, and often for workshops, we follow the guidelines laid down by Kirkpatrick. That is, we ask trainees to assess their experience at the end of a training session – this is Kirkpatrick level I – and we also ask them to complete questionnaires immediately before and after. This is the level II test, and it gives us an idea of how well the key messages were understood. This information is then used to identify areas for post-course clarification and, second, to drive updates in course content. In addition, the resulting statistics can be interesting and reassuring, both for us and our clients.

Finally, we do like to get feedback from our trainees after they’ve returned to their jobs. From time to time, we therefore send out a short survey to veteran course participants all over the world.

Progress guidance

Training Experiences and Testimony

Many of our training experiences are captured in articles, together with testimony from our customers. Here is the latest post …

Helping Engineers Maximise the Positive Impact of their Expertise

It's well known that many professionals have difficulty communicating with people outside their speciality and it's not unusual for start-ups to be frustrated by an indifferent world – "why does nobody appreciate our great idea??"!

Ironically, this problem exists because we're intelligent. If we weren’t preoccupied by the complexity of our subject, then we'd get to the point more easily, our explanations would resonate with others and we'd grow in confidence and skill. As it is, we tie ourselves in knots, nobody understands, and we get nervous about repeating the experience.

The very abilities that constitute our added value inhibit the expression of that value.

10 years ago, I started carving out a niche to address this issue for engineers, particularly Applications Engineers and others involved in customer facing work. Trainings and workshops, events, a book, team leader coaching ... all aimed at making client encounters more enjoyable and productive for technical specialists.

Looking back on failures and successes (they happen in that order :-), it seems to me that:

... read more ...

 

Other Recent Posts

Helping Engineers Maximise the Positive Impact of their Expertise

It's well known that many professionals have difficulty communicating with people outside their speciality and it's not unusual for start-ups to be frustrated by an indifferent world – "why does nobody appreciate our great idea??"! Ironically, this problem exists because we're intelligent. If we weren’t preoccupied by the complexity of our subject, then we'd get to the point more easily, our explanations would resonate with others and we'd grow in confidence and skill. As it is, we tie...

Circuit Archaeology with the Help of Amiq

What do you do when you have to perform risk analysis on a 20 year old circuit design and the information available consists of 30 vintage, undocumented VHDL files? (VHDL is a Hardware Description Language – an HDL).In my case, a quick email not only provided the solution, it also restored my faith in human nature and the power of generosity and trust in business.A couple of years ago, I was lucky enough to visit Amiq’s offices in Bucarest to stage a communication methodology...

The Customer-Facing Few

Consider what it takes to build an aircraft carrier and put it out to sea. Tens of thousands of contractors crossing multiple disciplines, organisations, states and countries are involved. Another ten thousand or so do the actual construction. About five thousand sailors then sail it out of port. Finally, a handful of pilots take to the sky. And so the ultimate success of seventy to eighty thousand people depends on these few pilots – the only ones to actually make contact with the...

Team Building and Training as One Activity

Nowadays, classroom-based professional training is all about learning activities – labs, simulations, role plays, serious games, and so on. Over the past ten years, I would say, there has been a major shift away from subject matter lectures towards experimentation and coaching (the business of acquiring information and theory tends to be done online wherever possible). As well as a place for experimentation, classroom training also provides great opportunities for team building. Of...

Teledyne Dalsa Warding Off the Hurry Monster

The Hurry Monster (not to be confused with the Worry Monster – a cuddly toy – and the Panic Monster – a superb invention of Tim Urban’s) frightens us into rushing tasks that we would otherwise perform brilliantly. And he can have a disastrous effect on Customer Communication. He’s looming in the background of the above group photo, taken after a training on Excellence in Customer Communication at Teledyne Dalsa in Krailling, Germany, last month. Martin Grzymek’s, Teledyne Dalsa’s Director of...

Energy Control & Pre-Match Planning – the Axcelis example

Axcelis knows how to manage high energy with precision – its core business is the supply of ion implanters to the semiconductor industry. The company provides vital machines for the manufacturing process behind modern electronics. Axcelis certainly contributed to building the device with which you are reading these words! The training program that we’ve launched together aims to harness a different kind of energy – the human kind – and apply it with precision to the challenging task of...

Preparing for Customer Intimacy with Communication Training

KORTIQ knows that its Product Development Team – now busy creating advanced Convolutional Neural Network (CNN) solutions – is critical to winning customers and building long-term commercial relationships. It’s strong technical culture is an asset that it can be proud of and must exploit. Exposing this culture and the people who embody it is key to a business stratagem known as Customer Intimacy. To enable it, we launched a training program – Excellence in Customer Communication - at KORTIQ’s...

Metacommunication: the importance of talking about talking

Just as metadata means data about data, metacommunication is communication about communication[1]. When I complain about the media’s tendency to awfulize and terribilize, I am metacommunicating. Instead of explaining what I mean with long sentences and examples, I use a couple of simple, expressive words[2]. Metacommunication is important because communication is important. And just as you can’t get better at football if you don’t understand the abstract concepts of attack and defense, it’s...

Leadership and Resisting Other People’s Problems (3 of 3)

In a couple of recent posts, I suggested a magic spell to help you avoid taking on other people's problems: "And what would you like to have happen?". Assume that you've mastered this formula and have used it on a colleague who is now standing (spellbound) in front of you; how do you move them from their frozen state into one of action? In other words, now that they realise that you're not going to solve their problem for them, how do you help them decide what to do next? It's simple: you...

Leadership and Resisting Other People’s Problems II

As explained in a previous post, “And what would you like to have happen?” is a magic spell, taken from Clean Language and the Five-Minute Coach, that helps you inspire others to find their own solutions. When you cast the spell on someone, their desired outcome magically appears and they rush off to work out an action plan. Sometimes. Alas, as any Hogwarts student will tell you, magic spells only work if you know how to use them. When this particular one goes wrong, it’s a monkey that...

To contact us ...

12 + 1 =