8 Do’s + 3 Don’ts of Virtual-Led Presentations for New Generations

Posted: September 21, 2016

It’s time to admit it, times are a’changin. We have a whole new technology and a new user group to deal with now. How in the world are we going to make training interesting enough for them to actually learn the “stuff” we want them to remember? (I feel so far behind the eight-ball lately.) I have found that there are a few things we can do, especially if your company’s “got your back”.

Virtual training is the way of the future. See our best tips and practices for using technology to engage your learners without alienating them.

1.Who’s training who?

As always, when developing training, rule number one is know your audience. These days, your audience likely consists of computer-savvy Millennials. This ever-growing, Facebooking, Tweeting, social media group of learners must be involved in their own learning. YouTube and Google are the Millennials’ main research channels when they get the “need to know.”

2. Replicate social media environments whenever possible

This allows the learner an opportunity to research provided resources and communicate with the other members of the class.

3. Kick your hyperlinks up a notch

Instead of providing a spattering of hyperlinks throughout the learning, why not turn all hyperlinks within your training into a list of all resources, complete with descriptions and keywords? Essentially, you’ll allow the learners to “Google” the required resources.

4. Give your activities a “Facebook” lift

Letting participants introduce themselves through this familiar format provides a great platform for introductions. For longer classes, it can provide a base for sharing learning experiences and activity interactions

5. Create your own YouTube-like repository

Where possible, create short snippets of “how-to” videos that can be “Googled-up” during training and while on the job.

6. Provide a hashtag for your class

This is a fun + quick way to allow Tweet interaction between participants and the facilitator.

7. Use the available features provided by your conferencing software

Use keywords or illustrations when developing your slide presentations. Allowing the facilitator or participants to complete the visual with highlights or arrows or even to add text during the facilitation can help call attention to the relevant content.

Synchronized web browsing allows the facilitator to click links or enter URLs into the Address bar to launch websites on the participants’ monitors. Does your conferencing tool offer this option?

8. Create a WIKI to support the class

One wrap-up activity might include having the learners spend 10 minutes contributing to the knowledge base that already exists in the WIKI.

Don’t overbook the class

Remember, this is a virtual classroom, not a virtual lecture hall. The class must be small enough to facilitate interaction with and between the participants.

Don’t forget to provide specific instructions for the facilitators

They may be new to this style of presentation.

Don’t force the use of social media on everyone

We’re not all there yet. For a learner who does not actively participate in social media, forcing him or her to use it creates a handicap for that individual, who must not only learn the course content, but also learn how to use the social media presented. Replicating social media environments with easy-to-follow instructions during an activity, however, provides an opportunity for those of us who are new to social media to ease our way in.

YEP! Things… they are a’changin’! – Push your management team to incorporate social media into the training environment. Today’s user group is different. They are special. They grew up with the systems we try to train. OMG! They are the future. Let’s give them a head start!

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