As a training manager, you know better than anyone how important continued education and career development is.
But what about your own career development? Your entire job is about training and guiding other people to be better at their jobs. How can you make yourself better at what you do?
If you’re finding your upward trajectory giving way to a flat section, here are three ways you can make a breakthrough and be better at your job than ever before.
1. Take a course
Knowledge is power, or so “Schoolhouse Rock” tells me.
That was true back in elementary school, and it’s true in the working world. The more you know about your industry, the more of an expert you are, and the more indispensable you become. Learning everything you can about what you do for a living is always a smart move.
But how can you learn more when you’re done with school? Take a course!
If you’re looking for something as digital as your job is, try a virtual course. Langevin Learning Services offers a range of online workshops that start at around $99 and cover everything from an introduction to course design to how to analyze your students to determine the most effective teaching methods.
Lacking the money or the corporate approval to take one of these courses? It will take a little more time and effort, but you can always self educate. Start by watching some TEDtalks to get that brain juice going. Here’s 5 TEDtalks for online educators that I recommend.
2. Get techie
So you’ve learned all there is to learn and you’re hitting a plateau. That’s real! It happens! And luckily it’s pretty easy to get over the hump and keep improving as an instructor. The problem might not be with you, but merely with the tools you’re using.
Consider updating your tech toolbox with an improved learning management system, especially if the one you have is outdated or wastes a lot of your time in navigation.
Additionally, course authoring software can help you design more varied, complex, and engaging lesson material for your students. You can use course authoring software without overhauling an existing LMS. Check out this list of five particularly awesome examples.
If this is the first time you’ve done research on buying software, you might find this checklist of LMS features you should look for helpful.
If you don’t control the budget and you’re concerned about convincing the people who do of the need for new software, try putting together a business case package, like this prefab one.
You can even try a free mobile app to help you up your training management game.
Does turning to tech to make yourself perform better technically make you a cyborg?
Sadly, no. But it’s still pretty cool.
3. Survey your students
No amount of training or fancy tech is going to help you out if your students don’t respond well to it.
But how can you tell what material your students need or want? You might try asking them. Talking to your students is a wonderful way to become a better training manager.
Send a survey (you can use any one of these free or cheap survey software options) to your students to uncover more information about what they want to see in their course material, how they learn best, and what you can do to improve their educational experience.
Note that I’m not suggesting you give them tests. These surveys should have nothing to do with the actual educational material itself (although pre- and post-tests can tell you a lot about how successfully you’ve managed to impart information to your learners), but should focus on things such as learning methods and preferred tech options.
Some sample questions you could ask include:
- Are you a visual, auditory, or kinetic learner?
- Do you enjoy educational video games?
- Are you motivated by things such as points and prizes?
- When taking a test, do you prefer short essays or multiple choice formats?
- Would you prefer group work or independent work?
- In a typical week, how much time do you have to devote to professional development?
- Are you competitive when playing games or sports?
Questions such as these will help you determine what matters to your students and how you might best tailor your lessons to them.
How are you making yourself a better training manager?
Are you taking a class? Upgrading your tech? Something else? Tell me all about it in the comments below, or tweet me @CapterraHalden.
And check out any of the related articles below to help you learn how to maximize your learners’ training experience.
- 5 LMS Implementation Lessons I Learned From My Online High School
- 3 Steps to Building Your First Virtual Reality Classroom
- The Ultimate Guide to Mobile eLearning
Looking for Training software? Check out Capterra's list of the best Training software solutions.