Tip #934: How to Get Participant Buy-In

One key to a successful training program is to help participants realize at the beginning of the session how the training will benefit them. They need to decide this for themselves. If the trainer tells them why it should be important to them, they will be less likely to buy in.

The trainer has to find a learning activity that will help the participants discover and express the benefits of the training.

If the benefits are obvious, all the trainer needs to do is ask the participants to brainstorm answers to the question: “How will this (topic/knowledge/skill) benefit you?”

If the participants are not familiar with the specific training content, the trainer could ask: “What will be the consequences if the current (situation/policy/procedure) remains the same?” or  “What are the consequences of not making this change? How will it affect (you, the customers, and/or the company)?”

The trainer can have participants answer the question: “What are your challenges with the current (policy/procedure)?” The participants may not know why a change is being made, but they will know what they don’t like about the current situation. The training content can then show how those challenges can be met.

A trainer can take a different tack. For example, in a training session for supervisors about how to handle difficult employee behavior, the question might be: “How will your job be easier if your employees are successful on the job?” This question can intrigue and engage the participants by redirecting their attention from what their employees are doing wrong to what their employees need from them.

If the training content is unfamiliar to the participants, the trainer will need to wait until the end of the session. Then, asking “Now that you have been introduced to the new (system/policy/ procedure), what benefits do you see for (you, the customers, and/or the company)?” will reinforce the participants’ buy-in.

The more invested the participants are in the training, the greater likelihood that they will learn, retain and effectively apply their new knowledge or skills back on the job. The earlier that buy-in occurs, the easier the training experience will be for both the participants and the trainer.

If you’d like to learn how to facilitate a successful classroom or virtual training program, contact Deborah Laurel.

#participantbuyin #participantengagement #trainingbenefits

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