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How to Deliver Impactful, Effective Training in a Hybrid Setting

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Fri Nov 05 2021

How to Deliver Impactful, Effective Training in a Hybrid Setting
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The last 18 months have upended the way we work, interact, and train. Increasingly, Mandel’s clients are coming to us to deliver “hybrid training,” where some portion of the group is together in person and others (possibly even the trainer) are not.

Even if you think you don’t need to plan for hybrid training, our clients find they do. Now that people are used to work-from-home flexibility, there’s an increased chance that someone you expect to attend your training in person simply won’t. You need to be ready for accidents disrupting commutes, sick family members, or something else to cause people to attend training virtually.

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Numerous different combinations of hybrid scenarios exist. Each brings its own nuanced set of challenges. However, we’ve found a core set of best practices that up-level the experience in any hybrid training experience.

Practice, Practice, Practice

Practice in the space you’ll be in with the technology you’ll be using. Determine how to get technical support during the event. Depending on your setup, practice may include working with:

Cameras

  • Can remote participants see in-room participants and visa-versa?

  • How far can you move and still be seen?

  • Where do you need to look to make eye contact with the remote audience?

Microphones

  • Are there enough?

  • How is the sound?

Visuals

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  • Can remote participants see the slides, whiteboard, and other visuals?

Other technology

  • Will you use collaboration tools, displays, or other features?

Modify Your Delivery Skills

Maintaining engagement can be trickier with hybrid training. Here are tips to keep everyone interested and participating equally:

  • Make eye contact with remote participants. Treat the camera as a person in the room. Make regular eye contact with in-person participants and the camera.

  • Move as appropriate. Stand up and move around, if possible. This adds a dynamic, natural energy.

  • Know your content inside and out. When you do, you can focus on your voice, presence, and effective pausing.

Establish Etiquette and Rules of Engagement

As with any meeting, knowing what’s expected and how to connect is critical.

  • Tell participants how to participate. At the start, let them know how they should share. Should participants verbally share their insights and ideas or use virtual tools? Examples include: “During this meeting, will those of you in X location and those of you here, please…” or “Whether you’re participating remotely or are here in the room, please...” and “For all remote attendees, please turn on your cameras.”

  • Request that each participant state their name when they speak. This helps everyone, including you.

  • When valuable sidebar conversations or comments occur, repeat them so everyone can hear.

  • Engage remote participants regularly.

  • Call on remote participants first. When you do, pause longer than usual so you don’t speak over them.

  • Check in frequently. Ask about your pace and volume and whether they can see the visuals or have any questions or comments.

  • When calling on someone, start with their name. This helps tee them up to answer.

  • Keep track of how often each person contributes. Call on those who haven’t said as much.

The great news? With a bit of extra attention and practice, you and your team can master the nuances of delivering hybrid training that’s as effective and impactful as in-person training. Focusing on a few key aspects of your setup and delivery can help you take advantage of this new training mode—one that’s quickly becoming the norm.

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