Tip #605: If They “Won’t Have a Clue”

“Before I came here, I was confused about this subject. Having listened to your lecture, I am still confused — but on a higher level.”  Enrico Fermi

“A few steps back is sometimes needed to find clarity in the confusion.” April Mae Monterrosa

I had an unsettling conversation with a client today when we discussed curriculum. The purpose of the training program is to introduce participants to specific standards and train them how to apply those standards.

I had proposed an application activity. However, the client responded that “they won’t have a clue” so it would be better to simply gloss over the topic.

When I inquired why they “won’t have a clue,” he said this was due to the fact that the participants were not directly involved in implementing this particular standard.

So I asked him why we were spending time teaching something that the participants will never have to do.

He explained that they would be involved in providing data or guidance to those who would have responsibility for applying the standard.

So the obvious solution was to have the training focus on what the participants need to know and do to perform their actual role.

The moral of this story: Be careful to keep your target audience in mind when you design curriculum. The training content and activities should be relevant to the participants.

No trainer should simply “gloss over” specific content because the participants “won’t have a clue” about it. The last thing we want to do is confuse and frustrate participants!

Remember, training is about the learner, not about the trainer.

If the content is not relevant, delete it. If it is relevant from a different angle, design the curriculum from that standpoint.

May your learning be sweet.


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