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Providing Virtual Training in the Age of COVID-19

For the last decade or so, there has been a debate about the benefits and disadvantages that are associated with virtual training. In reality, most pros and cons have their own merit. However, as we face our new reality of having our teams working from home, the limit on social gathering (including meetings and trainings) and other related challenges, we have no choice but to step up to the plate and deliver meaningful content in virtual format. So, how can we do this and still achieve the necessary gains of training?


Here are some tips and tricks to help keep your virtual attendees on track:


- Just like in person training, make sure you take time to set the ground rules and cover housekeeping items. If you are using a platform which allows you to track interaction and attentiveness, tell your attendees that! If you don't want your attendees wandering around on a virtual meeting, say so. As my grandma used to tell me, " You need to inspect what you expect".


- Make sure you have properly adapted your content to virtual learning. If your training program is typically an in-person event, you can't expect that your existing materials will be ready-to-go for virtual learning.


- Do a run through before launching. Even if you have conducted your training program dozens of time before, the first virtual launch will inevitable have some glitches, changes and adaptations you hadn't anticipated.


- If able, take the time to follow up with your participants after the virtual training. This helps to help create some of that personal interaction that we tend to lose in virtual programming.


As you further adapt your training to our new climate, remember that even as we return to a version of 'normal' we will still need to consider what adaptations can be made to facilitate safe learning environments while maximizing the return.

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