The best question I’ve found to open a training session or strategic planning workshop

Jeopardy Clue - 1

About a year ago, I was preparing a workshop when my co-facilitator suggested that we add a question into the opening icebreaker activity.

The question seemed a little too touchy-feely for me, but he was persistent, so we left the question in. I wasn’t expecting very high quality responses, and I was surprised when people actually gave sincere answers to the question.

It worked so well that I have since incorporated it into the opening of many of my training sessions and strategic planning workshops.

The question is: Continue reading

The Saga of Inky the Octopus is a Cautionary Tale for Anyone Leading a Training Session

Octopus

Last week it was reported that Inky the Octopus crawled out of his tank at a New Zealand aquarium, suction cupped his way across the floor, squeezed through a 6-inch drain in the floor and, like Andy Dufresne from The Shawshank Redemption, wriggled 164 feet through a pipe on his way to freedom.

He was being held captive against his will. He wanted out. By any means necessary.

I get the feeling that a lot of people who are sent to mandatory compliance training or IT system training or a number of other workshops and conference sessions feel much the same way.

Here are five ideas you might want to consider in order to keep your audience engaged and to prevent them from ditching your training session. Keep in mind that even if someone doesn’t walk out of your session, they can still mentally check out.  Continue reading