Adults need a learning environment that reinforces their ability to apply the information received in training back on the job. This can be somewhat accomplished by class discussion and talking about what to do based on case study content. The learning becomes more relevant with practice on the job that is then shared back in the training session.
Working with a client recently, I asked the participants to practice giving or receiving feedback or resolving a conflict in some situation that would occur between scheduled class sessions. (I always try to provide a choice so that each person encounters some situation in which they can practice. After all, I don't want to encourage them to go out and start conflicts, as an example.) They brought several interesting summaries of their experience trying to implement the ideas learned in training. We all learned from their shared experiences.
But, the most important concept that I have learned about training over the years is that the training must echo and reinforce the company's values and desired leadership and management style. So, it's best done internally by someone who knows the company and its desired culture. That is how you train the organization's leadership brand; it is how you ensure employee learning and training transfer. This is how I have provided training - always. Outside seminars and workshops have their place in leadership development, but the fundamentals must come with consistency and a shared vision of what the organization is trying to create.
So, imagine my delight when I received this book excerpt from Dave Ulrich and Norm Smallwood (pictured) about using training to help organizations develop their leadership brand. It exactly reinforces what I believe and you'll enjoy and learn from their training tips.