Training the Trainer

Our company culture has a strong emphasis on learning in all its forms. For this reason, everyone in the company attends training sessions to improve their skills. As much of this training is in-house, we all need to be prepared to deliver training to our peers.

Earlier this month, we invited an instructor from The Knowledge Academy to lead a course on effective training techniques. The Webbies in attendance were a diverse group, including software engineers who were yet to deliver any training, senior engineers who had a few sessions under their belt, project managers, and myself as a communications assistant with a training session to lead in a few weeks’ time.

The course began with an icebreaker. We were all asked to draw a significant childhood object, our favourite food, and a scene from a memorable holiday. As an opening activity, it was much more revealing than the standard introduction, and helped to establish a break from our usual working roles and relationships.

Alongside icebreaker ideas, we discussed techniques for engaging people that are reluctant to participate. A great way to do this is ‘negative brainstorming’, where a group is tasked with coming up with the worst possible ideas for something. While this approach can be more appealing to those who are resistant to group activities, it can easily be turned into something productive by converting the negative list into its positive opposites.

The rest of the course focused on how to plan an effective training session. We examined some of the theory on adult learning and discussed the best ways to keep an audience’s attention and oversee group activities. In the afternoon, we put the theory into practice, planning a mock training session in groups. The opportunity to develop a training plan and to give and receive feedback on what could be improved was very helpful.


The techniques and ideas discussed in this course will undoubtedly be integrated into the Webbie training programme in the coming months. We’re always looking for ways to improve knowledge sharing within the company and to empower every member of staff to feel accomplished in their role. Becoming good trainers not only improves us as individuals, but also has a much broader positive impact in the dissemination of knowledge throughout the company and wider community.

Many thanks to The Knowledge Academy for their time and materials. Keep up with our Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Instagram to see us put our new training skills to the test!