IT Training – some comments from the classroom floor…

Comments from the IT Training classroom floor which made me think…

Having had the privilege of training thousands of staff of all ages and backgrounds in Excel and other Microsoft Office modules I’ve heard loads of comments during the class. Most are naturally to do with the topic being explained but some are more general which made me stop and think….

I think I’m on the wrong course

Two people have said this. One was completely on the wrong course. Instead of being of a health and safety course they came on our Basic Excel course! Another however had booked themselves onto our Intermediate Excel course and realised early on they should have been on our Basic Excel course first.

It made me think… how important it is to evaluate both from the trainer’s standpoint and trainee’s standpoint the content of the course and any pre-requisites. We always publish and send agendas in advance through to the organiser of the course and ask them a good training needs analysis be conducted to make sure that the person is on the right level of training. It’s not unknown for some to go back and do Basic Excel after say Intermediate Excel but it’s best to do the training in the right order

I will never remember all this

This is a very popular comment often made towards the end of each course. We may have taught a trainee a hundred features and they will have successfully completed those hundred tasks during the day. The key however is to put into practise quickly those new skills after training has finished.

We offer a variety of ways of doing this from ‘reminder exercises and videos’ to encouraging employers to allow a few minutes each day for their staff to look at their own spreadsheets and to improve on them. Practice may not make perfect, but it sure helps!

Have you ever been on stage!?

I do tend to have a very informal but animated style whilst training often trying to add humour into my courses to make the rather drier topics at least more palatable. We believe that if you enjoy a course you are far more likely to want to learn more

I hate Excel and you won’t teach me anything today!

Although this was an exceptional comment made by one lady at the outset of the course it made me think. Here was a person who came into the course with a prejudice against the topic, a closed mind and an attitude which meant she was not prepared to give it a go!

Despite all kinds of encouraging questions and assistance she stubbornly refused to engage and learn. Sadly, at the close of play she still hated Excel and had not learned anything. Her employer had wasted their money. It made me think how important it is when it comes to learning a new subject to come with an open and eager mind and engage, ask for help and be prepared to at least give it a go. In my classes all are unsuccessful (apart maybe from that 1!)

I can work part time now

At a recent course one lady said that the time she could save implementing those shortcuts in Excel she had learned could save her hours and she could now work part time! It made me think that here was a payback and justification for the IT training. Not that all staff can go part time but that their efficiency will improve and in their roles, they can become more productive. I’m always seeking to see how they can put into practice their skills to save time and make life easier for all.

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You might also like to read our previous post Excel training in Gloucestershire.