No, this is not some paranoid “Big Brother is Watching” rant. This is about some of the realities of being a trainer.
As a trainer you are a leader, a role model and a mentor; whether you like it or not. Others will choose to follow you, emulate you and strive to be like you. That is one of the many realities of being a trainer.
Another reality – they are watching you. The people in your agency are watching you when you are in the classroom, the combatives room and on the range teaching. They are watching you (and listening to you) when you are in the hallways, the fitness room, the lunchroom and the roll call room. They are watching you when you are on the street. They are watching you when you are attending conferences. They are watching you when you are a student in someone else’s class at your agency.
They are watching you to learn from you and they are watching you to see if you walk the talk, practice what you preach and follow your own rules for the classroom (no texting, no side conversations, etc).
Dr. Robert Cooper says an audience always has three questions when they sit in your presentation:
- Do I trust you?
- Is this interaction worth a piece of my life?
- Am I in, or am I out?
The answers to those questions are based on what they see and hear from you both in the classroom, and outside the classroom. If you do not practice outside the training room what you preach inside the training room they are going to have a hard time answering yes to those questions.
As a trainer you are in a position of great influence. With that comes great responsibility and accountability.
You do not have to be perfect. You are human and will screw up and make mistakes. When you screw up, standup and own up. People are forgiving of those who screw up, and are willing to stand up, own up and learn from their mistakes. They are not forgiving of cover up.
Being a trainer is not easy but, it is worth it.
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