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training sessionIf you decide to become a professional speaker or use speaking as an integral part of your marketing strategy, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the various types of speeches you might be asked to give. In this series of posts, I’ll give you the basics on a variety of types of presentations you can prepare. At the end of this post, I’ve listed previous articles in this series.

What is a training session?
When you conduct a training session, you are stepping into the role of educator. You are teaching your audience how to do something that you know how to do. In most cases, this will be business oriented … but I’ve also trained people how to belly dance!

The goal of a training session is to have the attendees able to perform some task or behavior by the end of the session. Therefore, it is essential that you prepare your material and that you know your audience.

Training sessions work best when they are tailored to your audience. This is because if your training methods go over the audience’s head, they won’t know what to do, and if it is too basic, they’ll get bored and tune you out.

Of course, regardless of what your topic is, knowing your audience is important. It just becomes critical in a training session.

Break it down
You want to break down what you are training people to do into easily digestible parts. If you can organize the task or behavior into a systematic process, so much the better.

For example, when I’m teaching belly dance, during the warm up I use simple moves that are parts of the more advanced dance moves I’ll be training later in the class. That way, people get familiar and comfortable with the pieces, so as they put them together, otherwise complex moves seem easy.

You can do the same thing with just about anything. The sale process can be broken down into component activities. Data entry can be broken down into each field that needs to be entered. Heck, writing a speech can be broken down into three primary parts!

Use strategic repetition
You’ve probably heard the old adage, “Tell them what you’re going to say. Say it. Then tell them what you said.” The thing that is often missing from this advice is that the reason you do this is to give people the same information is several different ways. That way, if they don’t understand the info when you say it one way, the likelihood they’ll understand it from a different viewpoint is pretty high.

Remember, your audience is going to be a mix of people with different learning styles. Some will be visual learners, others audio learners and the remainder will be kinesthetic learners. You need to get your training message to all of them. Use word pictures (if not actual pictures) for the visual learners. Explain things carefully for the audio learners. And be sure to include some hands-on demonstration for the kinesthetic learners.

Of course, there is so much more to creating a successful and effective training session than what I cover here, but these tips are a good foundational start.

Resources for developing a training session:

Do you miss this?
Here is the last (and first) post in this “Types of Speeches” series:

The next post in this series is The Motivational Speech.

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About the author

Carma Spence, author of Public Speaking Super Powers, is an award-winning editor with more than 20 years experience in marketing, public relations and science communication. She is a multi-dimensional entrepreneur, a certified life coach, science fiction writer and poet. She is able to see people's brilliance and help them bring their genius to light. The wind beneath her clients’ wings, Carma provides creative entrepreneurs with expert advice on branding and online presence, as well as the emotional support necessary to carve out their niche for success online. You can find her on Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn.