I recently had the please of interviewing Gabrielle Salfati PhD on the topic of Stress, Burnout and Resilience for the Excellence in Training Academy. Near the end of the interview Gabrielle shared that a law enforcement trainer had asked her, “If I could only find 30 minutes in the syllabus to teach this, what would you recommend I teach?” This is a common question, and one that I believe we need to rethink and reframe.
Instead of trying to “find time” to insert important training into an existing syllabus or training plan, think about where you can weave the training into existing programs and time blocks. This requires taking a step back and looking at where you already cover related elements such as wellness, resilience, emotional intelligence, implicit bias, strategic communications, leadership, decision making, core values and culture in your existing training. It might be easier to weave this information in to what you are already doing than to try and “find time” to add in a whole new element.
“Weaving into” requires actively seeking out the links between that topic and a wide variety of other topics and then finding fluid ways of weaving them together connecting the concepts for the learners. “Weaving into” also incorporates the element of interleaving, which is one of the key elements identified in the research to help make learning stick.
The elements Gabrielle covered in our interview for example can be easily woven into a wide variety of topics over the length on an academy and can easily be woven into ten minute training segments delivered to in-service personnel over the course of a year. This creates numerous touch points, which allows for better understanding, learning and retention of the material. It also starts to weave these critical concepts into the culture of the organization.
The concept of “finding time to fit this in” is part of the siloed. and one and done training mindsets we have held onto for far too long. The concept of “weaving into” requires that you look at training holistically and seek to find ways to help the people you have the privilege of training to understand how all these principles and concepts are interwoven.
So, when you are looking to add new content to your training consider the possibility of weaving it into existing training instead of trying to carve out or find time to add a new element.
Winning Mind Training – Dedicated to serving the heroic men and women of law enforcement.
The Excellence in Training Academy – A membership site created for law enforcement trainers willing to invest in their ongoing professional development.
Dare to Be Great Leadership – Committed to helping aspiring and frontline leaders on their leadership journey through a weekly leadership blog and the online Dare to Be Great workshop.