TO CREATE DEVELOPMENT THAT STICKS YOU SHOULD STAY AWAY FROM TEACHING, YOU COULD DO THIS INSTEAD…

Everybody wants to teach their:

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Everybody wants to convince you about THEIR WAYS of doing something

What an incredibly wrong way to try to develop people. The very vast majority of trainers use lecturing in front of a group in their effort to develop them. That is more entertaining than developing.

Lecturing to provide learning worked when we had no previous experience, when there was nothing to compare in our mind and then we would believe and -maybe- learn from anything that we get told.

We granted the subject matter authority to the person on the stage delivering the lecture. We would believe anything that the teacher will tell us at college, for example.

But, let me ask you…  how many years of professional experience do you have?

Do you know what happens as soon as we have our own experiences at work?

Our own experience takes over on top of any other form of learning. It can be a great book or the person that we see lecturing on us. But this happens un a subconscious level, we don't do it in an intentional way.

So, when you speak in front of a group you really have to make sure that your topics are relatable to the audience. Since everybody will be involuntarily filtering in or out all the ideas and concepts depending on what is found to be true or false, and useful or not by their previous experience.

Our previous experience takes now the figure of authority for the learning.

WHEN THE STUDENT IS READY THE TEACHER APPEARS

So much truth in this sentence, but not because of the teacher but because of the student. What is more important is the desire to learn in the student, not the qualifications and desire to teach in the teacher.

Of course, when we want to develop our professional skills, we are on the learning side of the equation. There is a big difference between learning something and being taught something.

From a trainers perspective, if we want to develop people, the learning process is critical, not the teaching process.

-The teaching process is teaching-centered, the learning process is learning-centered

-The teaching process is teacher-centered, the learning process is student-centered

-The teaching process goal is to feed into the audience the concepts and ideas that hopefully can be used to learn something.

-The learning process goal is to gain understanding from our past experiences and learn what has worked and what has not, and how it has worked. Also to learn from the experience of others, what has worked for them and what has not?

As a trainer, it is more important to design and put together the right environment to encourage learning. It is critical to gently push the people's mind for them to assess and explore past experiences and then drive the process for them to build useful conclusions.

Teaching is directive, training is non-directive  ("This is what you should learn" vs. "What can you learn from this?")

Don't get me wrong, lecturing and speaking as an expert in a specific subject matter is necessary as part of the learning process. But most of the times this process lacks the most important piece: the highest authority of our own mind where all previous experiences reside.

We could read and even memorize the best secret in leadership and yet nothing would be different if it does not connect with something else we have experienced before.

This means that instead of the "5 or 10 proven ways of doing something" (The internet is full of that "I'm here to teach you this" philosophy) from somebody else, we have to develop our own behavior with a good sense of direction and productive interactions. Your own 5 or 10 ways of doing something will always be better.

 

HOW CAN YOU DO THAT?

Your learning will be real and permanent if you could have a process to understand what happened the last time that you went through a specific situation.

In a quick summary, this process is:

-Gaining awareness of what is our current response to specific situations at work

-Pushing your mind to think and search for understanding of the events, - the more complete picture you can have the better understanding you will have-

-Analyzing what gains and losses from this mindset you have had and what results do you want to have in the future.

-What changes in your perspective do you need to apply so you can change your results

The reality will not be different right away. But the way you perceive that reality will be different and if you have a personal commitment, your actions, reactions and ways to connect with the others will start to be different.

That is a human development that sticks, and that is self-powered and can be useful for a longer time.

As people trainer and developer, you can't change people's mind and ideas, but you can build a context for the learning, provide with the right guiding principles and stimulate a great mental process for people to think, learn, understand and grow.