3 Simple Steps To Move Training Online

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This brief looks at how to move training online and the benefits associated with doing so


<ul><li>1.3 Simple Steps to Move Training OnlineIntroductionIf your organization is like most, then you are scrambling toconvert your traditional instructor led classes to a live onlineformat. You may be hoping to take advantage of the costsavings offered by virtual training, such as saving time, orreducing travel expenses. Maybe you are moving your trainingonline in order to reach your dispersed workforce. Regardlessof your reason, the time is now for virtual training. With theadvances in technology, growth of mobile devices, and theincreased mobility and globalization of the workforce, virtualtraining just makes sense.Over the past 7 years, delivery of traditional instructor-led trainingclasses has decreased from 70% to 49%, while other methods,including virtual instructor-led training, are increasing to fill thegap1. So while traditional in-person classes still comprise a largepercentage of training delivered in organizations, virtual training Definitions: offers many benefits. Live online delivery can help you offer Synchronous? more training to your employees, and to reach your increasingly Live online? mobile workforce. Virtual training?Whether you are an early adopter of live online training, or Yes! These terms just getting started in your transition, you need to know how to all refer to virtual transition your training classes. This white paper outlines the three instructor-led training, steps you should follow when converting your traditional, in- or vILT. person training classes into online ones. It also reviews the typesof live online sessions you could have, and will help you avoidthe three most common conversion mistakes. Whether you are atrainer, a designer, or someone overseeing training, this paper isfor you.The Importance of Good DesignVirtual training suffers from a poor reputation because manypeople think its boring or not an engaging way to learn. Theymay have attended a lecture-style webcast, or they cantimagine how they could meaningfully interact with others online.However, when designed well, synchronous virtual training canprovide meaningful learning opportunities for participants.Learn more at www.cindyhuggett.com 1 Source: Bersin &amp; Associates 2012 Corporate Learning Factbook2 Cindy Huggett, 2012 All Rights Reserved</li></ul><p>2. 3 Simple Steps to Move Training OnlineYour success with virtual training will depend upon a designthat engages participants, helps them learn a new skill, andcreates a great learning experience.What Can Convert?This paper assumes you already have a well-designedtraditional in-person training class. Your challenge is how toIt doesnt matter translate this design into an equally superior online class. Thewhat type of training three steps outlined in this white paper will help you do justyou have, almostthat.anything can betaught in the liveOf course, if you are starting from scratch to create a virtualonline environment. training course, many of these same design principles willapply. You will still need to determine what type of onlineIts possible tosession you will have, still need to avoid common virtualdeliver technical training design mistakes, and still follow the three steps.training, softwaretraining, interpersonalskills training,communicationTypes of Live Online Sessionsskills, and even salesLets begin with a look at the types of live online sessionstraining using theyou can have because this distinction will help determinevirtual classroom.your design decisions.As I discussed in chapter 1 of my book, Virtual TrainingBasics, there are varying types of sessions. These sessionshave both in-person and online equivalents. In the in-person environment, you have four general categories ofgatherings: meetings, presentations, seminars, and trainingclasses. Its the same in the live online environment: In-Person TypeDefinitionOnline EquivalentMeeting A gathering of people to discuss topics.MeetingPresentationOne-way communication on any topicWebcastfrom a speaker to audience of varyingsizes. No interactivity except for Q&amp;A atthe end.Seminar One-way communication on an Webinareducational topic designed to impartknowledge from an expert speakerto the audience. Some interactionbetween speaker and audience mayoccur.TrainingA method of improving someones Virtual Instructor-performance, centered on learning Led Training (vILT)objectives.Learn more at www.cindyhuggett.com3 Cindy Huggett, 2012 All Rights Reserved 3. 3 Simple Steps to Move Training OnlineEach of these gatherings has a purpose and an opportunityfor design. There is not a right or wrong format for the typeof session you will have.However, it is important to define the type because it willdrive your design decisions.Designing for a 15-person training class is different than Define Expectationsdesigning for a webinar that will have 75 people in it, andcreating a design for a small virtual meeting will be different Its important to make than designing a webcast with 2000 people. sure you and your team Recognize this difference so that you can design the are using the same appropriate type of session. definition of formats, so that there is no confusion.Three Common Conversion Mistakes For instance, many training professionals and experts in the field will refer to There are three common mistakes made when converting their virtual training classes traditional training classes to the synchronous live online as webinars. In this environment. Lets explore each one, so that you can avoid distinction, what really them when translating your classes. matters is the meaning 1. Mistake number one is taking an interactive, behind the words.instructor-led classroom session and turning itinto a presentation-style webcast. This happens If you call your interactive more frequently than you would think becausepresenters can fall into lecture mode when they online training session acant see participants. In addition, slides tend to webinar and someonebe the easiest thing to convert to the live online else thinks that you meanenvironment, so facilitators might rely on them too one-way presentation much when presenting. then those mismatched Remember, you are converting training, not one- expectations couldway presentations. Just because participants lead to problems. Set are dispersed doesnt mean that your live online expectations appropriatelyclass should be a lecture. Dont forget what you with everyone who will be know about adult learning principles and how to engage participants in learning. Those guidelines involved with designing, apply to all types of training, including virtual. Your delivering, and consuming virtual training design should be just as engaging your online sessions. and interactive as if it were in-person. Use the built-in engagement features of the online training platform so your virtual attendees dont have toLearn more at www.cindyhuggett.com4 Cindy Huggett, 2012 All Rights Reserved 4. 3 Simple Steps to Move Training Online suffer through a lecture when what they need is a training class.2. Mistake number two is thinking that an 8-hour,instructor-led class will be an 8-hour, live onlinevirtual session. The reality is that one minute ofclassroom time does not equal one minute ofvirtual time. For example, in an in-person class, you might have participants go around the room and introduce themselves one-by-one. But in the virtual classroom, participants can type their introductions in the chat window. The in-person introductions could take more than 20 minutes, while the online chat introductions might only take 2 minutes. So when you convert in-person classes, especially lengthy ones, recognize that you can find ways to shorten activities and economize time. While every activity may not move faster, you can use technology tools to your advantage. This is one of the many benefits of virtual training.3. Mistake number three is to unintentionally inflatethe number of participants in the live onlineclass. Most traditional in-person training classesare designed for small numbers of participants.Typical training class numbers range from 10-25participants, depending upon the subject matterand other logistics. Yet the temptation to vastly increase participant numbers in the equivalent live online class size seems difficult to resist. Just because you can put hundreds of participants in an online classroom, doesnt mean you should. There are most certainly times when large numbers of participants in an online session is a good thing. If your goal is to present information in a webcast format, or your goal is to have a knowledge- awareness-only online seminar, then go for a large number of participants. You can achieve economies of scale when holding online meetings.Learn more at www.cindyhuggett.com5 Cindy Huggett, 2012 All Rights Reserved 5. 3 Simple Steps to Move Training Online Remember, the important thing is to distinguish these large events from your training classes. If a training class is designed for 20 people, then the training class is designed for 20 people whether its in-person or online. If you increase the participant numbers then you will lose the interactivity, the discussion opportunities, and the ability to easily coach participants on the new skills. Of course, its possible to have an interactive session with large participant numbers. The important message, however, is that you lose out on the small group dynamic thats often necessary in a training class. And perhaps more importantly, if your training design is for a small group and you apply it without modification to a large group, then you will not achieve the intended learning outcomes.You can avoid these common mistakes when transferringyour training classes to the online environment by makingbetter choices about your virtual training design. And nowthat you know what mistakes to avoid, lets learn how tomove your traditional training to the online classroom.Three Steps to Convert Training Classes There are three simple steps to convert your traditional training classes to the live online classroom2: 1. Return to the Learning Objectives 2. Select the best format for each 3. Design appropriate activities2 A version of these three steps were briefly mentioned in my book, Virtual Training Basics,published by ASTD Press in 2010. This white paper expands upon them in much greater detail.Learn more at www.cindyhuggett.com6 Cindy Huggett, 2012 All Rights Reserved 6. 3 Simple Steps to Move Training OnlineStep 1: Return to the Learning ObjectivesThe first conversion step is to look at the in-personclass learning objectives. What do learners needto know or do at the end of the session? What skillsshould they have? What changed behavior shouldthere be? What do they need to start doing? Or stopdoing?By going back to the learning objectives, you have asense of what needs to be done in the virtual session.The learning objectives reveal your end goal, yourend target, and what you want your learners toaccomplish. The learning objectives tell you whatsimportant and will guide you in the conversionprocess.What to do if your class doesnt have learningobjectives? Or it has weak learning objectives, onesthat begin with know or understand? Then returnto an instructional design model, such as ADDIE, toanalyze and determine what your learners need toknow or do as a result of the training.In fact, its a good idea to go back and revisit thelearning objectives of your traditional training classanyway. Even if you just quickly review and check tosee that they are still valid, you may uncover moresignificant challenges that can be addressed beforeconverting to the live online format.Keep in mind that learning objectives are not thesame as an agenda or what you want to cover.Instead, they are a reflection of what the learnerneeds to know or do afterward. Learning objectivesare the foundation of your course; they are essentialto each and every training program.As you examine each learning objective, you decidewhich ones belong in the virtual class versus whichones might better translate to pre- or post- classactivities.Learn more at www.cindyhuggett.com7 Cindy Huggett, 2012 All Rights Reserved 7. 3 Simple Steps to Move Training OnlineEffective learning objectivesThe best learning objectives are ones that specifically tieto what learners need to know or do on the job.According to Julie Dirksens fantastic book, Design forHow People Learn, well-written learning objectives shouldindicate something the learner would actually do in thereal world and something you can tell when theyvedone it.Even when knowledge is the expected outcome, thereis usually some way that learners need to act upon thatknowledge.Therefore, expected outcomes in your learningobjectives should be stated with action verbs. Onesign of a weak learning objective is the use of knowor understand as the verb, because neither of thoseactions can be measured.To illustrate, consider these examples:At the end of this training session, a participant willknow three techniques for responding to an upsetcustomer.OrAt the end of this training session, a participant will beable to: Recognize three techniques for responding to upsetcustomers. Select an appropriate technique based upon anupset customers situation. Use the appropriate technique to respond to anupset customer.Notice how the second example is much richer, tiesto what the learner would need to do on the job, andenables you to plan out in more detail what the trainingprogram needs to cover.Learn more at www.cindyhuggett.com 8 Cindy Huggett, 2012 All Rights Reserved 8. 3 Simple Steps to Move Training OnlineWhen moving to the online classroom, its commonto take a traditional training class, and convert to ablended design. The knowledge-only pieces becomeasynchronous activities while the rest of the classtranslates into the synchronous class. For example:Pre-class reading assignment for knowledge learning 4-hour traditional instructor-led training class 90-minute virtual class for collaboration &amp; skill practiceSelf-paced activityfor on-the-job applicationThis is one of the greatest benefits of virtual training--itsflexibility, the ability to mix and match, to chunk andbreak down components of your in-person instructorled training into virtual instructor-led training.You can think of it like a childs building blocks thatcan be pulled apart and put together in manydifferent ways. You can chunk the class into topics, orsections, and then build it back together in ways thatmake the most sense to your participants and theirlearning needs. When done well, its an art form.Step 2: Select the Best Format for EachLearning ObjectiveOnce the learning objectives are set, the next step isto select the best format for each one.Learn more at www.cindyhuggett.com9 Cindy Huggett, 2012 All Rights Reserved 9. 3 Simple Steps to Move Training OnlineThere are three main factors to consider whenchoosing the best or the most appropriate format: 1. Learning Objectives 2. Technology Capabilities 3. Partici...</p>