As I sat in the audience I, along with the other conference attendees, was looking forward to the presentation. I had never heard the speaker before and did not know them personally. They did however, have an impressive resume. As presentation went on I got more and more frustrated and by the end I just wanted to scream “Enough Already. Show us some respect.” What was it that was getting me so worked up? The Blah, Blah, Blah, Bio Droning on with a lengthy bio about who you are and all the things you have accomplished in your career and your life tends to turn the audience off right … [Read more...]
Ideas: Are They Born Interesting?
“Are ideas born interesting or made interesting?” Chip and Dan Heath During an Excellence in Training Course I ask people for a list of boring topics they suffered through in high school, college or training. I get answers like statistics, history, legal studies, policy, report writing and occupational healthy and safety. The reason for asking the question is to begin the discussion that there is no such thing as a boring subject, there are only boring instructors. For every subject people list someone else took the same subject from a great instructor who brought the subject to life for … [Read more...]
The Hero and the Mentor
While reading the HBR (Harvard Business review) Guide to Persuasive Presentations by Nancy Duarte one of her ideas struck me as extremely profound. I often talk about the need to remember that the training you deliver is not about you; it is about the officers you have the privilege and responsibility to train. Duarte used a new analogy to make that same point. Duarte reminds us the people in your audiences come to see what you can do for them and suggests you look at the audience as the hero of your idea and yourself as the mentor. She encourages trainers and presenters to, “Think of Yoda … [Read more...]
The Myth of Original Thought in Training
During my 23 years as a law enforcement trainer I have come to the realization there has not been an original thought or original material in about 100 years (maybe longer). Everything is recycled. As trainers we take the knowledge and information that is out there and we repackage it, reframe it, and retool it in original ways to put existing information in context for a particular audience and for our profession. We come up with unique and creative ways of interpreting and applying existing information. In reality it is the application, interpretation, packaging and delivery of material that … [Read more...]
We are not what we know….
"We are not what we know, but what we are willing to learn." Mary Catherine Bateson It is easy to get caught up in what you know (or think you know). It is easy to get caught up in what you have done. It is easy to get caught up in your own press clippings and simply bask in the glow of the good evaluations at the end of a course. It is easy to get caught up in your past accomplishments. Be cautious of the easy way. The challenge to always focus on: What you can learn next. How you can grow more. How you can make your training even better. How you can improve the learning … [Read more...]