Frequently asked (or wondered about) questions about the every-other-year Train the Trainer programme presented by Pegasus NLP in the New Forest.
Background to this unique programme
Train the Trainer is the most personal of the programmes I present. It is based on my experiences, lessons learned, and continuous refinement of training and presenting skills over the past 34 years.
These skills were developed in the course of presenting short and long-term training programmes to the general public, to NLP students, and to all levels of staff in small and large organisations in the UK, Ireland, and Europe.
I have designed the programme to be a comprehensive immersion in how to work in a thorough, ethical, and influential manner with large and small groups. Reg Connolly, Founder Pegasus NLP.
(1) Questions about presenting to groups
I know I need to present to groups – but I don’t like the idea
If you are moving ahead in your career you will reach a stage when you need to lead and motivate others.
And if you run your own business or coaching practise then presenting to groups of strangers is an essential part of marketing.
Very few of us naturally like presenting to groups, at first. It’s often a long and painful process of learning from setbacks and experiences. And it certainly was in my own early days. But it doesn’t have to be so.
In Train the Trainer you will learn the skills used by experts and distilled into accessible chunks. You will have opportunities to design and deliver short presentations on many of the training days - beginning with delivering impactful sessions of as little as 90 seconds!
I’m not a natural presenter
At the beginning of their training in presenting many, if not most, experienced trainers will have had similar doubts: “Why would anybody want to listen to me?” Or “I’m more of an introvert” or “I’m just not a natural trainer!”
As mentioned previously it’s not natural to be a natural presenter! We have to learn the skills. And once these are wired-in through practise they will appear to others to be magical or effortless or ‘natural’…
I’ve had some pretty uncomfortable experiences in making presentations
Some of my own early experiences in the early 80's as a self-taught presenter were dreadful. I had some very uncomfortable and embarrassing experiences – over a period of years. I would definitely have given up if I could – but I had to keep going to earn a living. And it probably took me three or four years to become reasonably confident and at ease in standing in front of a group of people. Train the Trainer contains an array of tools to enable others to avoid such experiences - to leap-frog over the painful stage.
Isn’t it just about delivering the information in an entertaining manner?
Lots of trainers focus on delivering high-energy performances or providing fun-filled ‘enter-trainments’. And there is nothing wrong with making training sessions enjoyable – providing the training also includes the three key pieces:
(1) Design: each learning session is carefully designed to produce down-the-road results
(2) Delivery: each session is delivered in a manner which is engaging and memorable
(3) Review: each session is followed by the all-important group review which anchors the learnings to events in each learner’s life.
What’s the best style to use when presenting
There are a range of styles and each will suit a different situation. The easiest way to think about this is to
- Imagine a continuum with the Very Formal style at one end and Very Informal at the other
- Now recognise the presenting requirements of the various points on this continuum.
- Use this to tailor your training style to suit your group.
For example the Very Formal style might be ideal for making a sales presentation to a board of directors. The Very Informal style would not suit this situation but it might be ideal for delivering, say, an NLP workshop that lasts longer than one day.
I get nervous in this situation…
‘Nerves’, or mental and physical arousal, can be valuable.
And, yes, 'nerves' do keep us sharp and on our toes.
However this common observation is not very helpful if the nervousness is overwhelming or gets in the way of your being at your best.
That’s why your Train the Trainer tool-kit includes a few things for ensuring you stay in the driving seat, including:
- The ability to recognise the conditions or situations which tend to de-rail your ease and fluency. In Train the Trainer you will be able to dissolve your emotional response to many of these and…
- others are likely to surface after the programme so you also need the state management tools to manage your level of arousal from moment to moment. Plus...
- methods for ‘buying yourself time’ so that you can pace yourself and give yourself space to manage the situation proactively rather than reactively.
Why do we presenters get nervous?
There are lots of reasons, including:
- Lack of state management skills
- Inadequate or incorrect preparation
- Lack of experience and practise
- Old negative anchors which bypass rational thinking
- Fear of rejection or criticism
- Being big-headed… believing that you must know more that everyone in the room! Rather than adopting the ‘None of us is as smart as all of us’ approach.
We examine and look at solutions for these and other self-undermining strategies during the programme. Plus you will have many opportunities to wire-in these solutions in live presentation sessions.
Will I notice a difference in my performance?
We expect you to have experienced a significant improvement in your presenting ability by the end of the first Module.
In the pre-course joining information we will invite you to make some private notes about your presenting experiences before attending. And to record your experiences in the first two or three presenting sessions on the Train the Trainer. So that you have a ‘before’ and 'after' assessment for Module 1.
Raising the bar
One of the most rewarding things about a career in presenting and facilitating is they way in which it demands that you continuously improve - and how the rewards from recognising your results encourage you to do even better.
In Train the Trainer you will be developing this continuous improvement attitude through learning from the programme syllabus, from the facilitating trainers, and from the presenting style of your colleagues – and from integrating these lessons and observations into your own style.
(2) The role of NLP in training
I don’t intend to run NLP training programmes?
This training programme began in 2005 as a training for intending NLP trainers.
However since 2010 it has evolved into a programme for those who want to improve their ability to design and present training sessions for any group and on any theme.
And, in addition, Train the Trainer will also teach you how to design and present NLP programmes – and for four reasons.
(1) Some of the group will intend to run NLP training programmes
(2) Being able to effectively deliver NLP workshops requires a range of skills (hence the 44 items on our training syllabus) - so in acquiring the ability to present NLP training programmes you will significantly enhance your overall training ability and flexibility.
(3) NLP skills fit excellently into, and enhance the effectiveness of, any training programme including managing and leading, team development, selling, coaching, and personal development.
(4) Using NLP to teach NLP as we do it at Pegasus NLP is a quite demanding discipline. Though we aim to make this relatively invisible, our workshops are highly structured and are designed, sequenced and delivered to produce very effective down-the-road results.
How can I apply NLP in training programmes in my company?
Whatever material you already train or present will benefit from being designed, delivered and reviewed using the tools from Train the Trainer.
Wherever your subject matter rests on the continuum between Very Soft Skills to Very Hard Skills, getting your people to take it on board requires a number of pieces including
- Relationship between trainer and participants
- Relationship between participants
- How motivated you can make the participants to learn and use each piece
- The design and sequence of the learning pieces and how these are delivered
- How you maintain the alertness, energy, and engagement of each learner
- And many more…
Each missing piece or incomplete piece means potentially less learning and less use of the material after the workshop.
What sort of NLP Workshops could I market?
What are you good at? What do you enjoy doing? Are there likely to be other people out there would like to have these abilities? This could be a great starting point.
Your NLP brings two sets of skills to this task
- Use it to design and sequence the workshops and
- Use it to introduce techniques from your NLP Practitioner into ‘non-NLP’ workshops e.g. life skills, technical training, better communication, public speaking, managing and leading, horse riding, selling, etc.
Let’s say you are a life coach. A lot of what is covered in a one-to-one (121) series, say, 3-6 of coaching sessions with any one customer will be similar to what other customers need…
So, does all your coaching need to be 121 or could most of the skills be more profitably and more effectively taught in groups – so that those customers who afterwards need more can come along for a few 121 top-ups? Lots of people prefer the relative safety of a group before committing to 121 sessions. It could also build your practice and result in more customer referrals.
(3) Syllabus: What you will learn
The main topics are listed in the programme syllabus. As with all of our courses these do not include the little tips and techniques that are interspersed along the way – and which often come up in “round the table” discussions at the beginning or the end of the training day.
I need to be able to handle difficult groups and situations
On Train the Trainer we will have a number of ‘Deal with this…’ challenges to simulate events that occur in the real-world of training. These are based omn real-life experiences and designed to develop the skills and attitude to handle just about any situation.
How would you deal with this...?
Four typical examples:
(1) Design a two-day workshop for this organisation and then sell the package to a group of directors – one of whom is hostile to ‘soft skills’ training programmes.
(2) On arrival at the hotel, to deliver your carefully prepared one-day workshop, the team’s manager looks at your schedule and says that HR gave you an incorrect briefing. You have 45 minutes to redesign your day. (This is based on a real event).
(3) On arrival at the hotel to present a two-day programme you receive a phone call saying that two-thirds of the group were given one month’s notice of redundancy at 5 PM the previous evening. You have 35 minutes to adapt your programme and prepare to manage their emotions. (Also based on a real incident).
(4) Prepare a 40 minute talk for the general public to interest them in your forthcoming series of evening Personal Development workshops. Expect some awkward questions and prepare your responses to these.
In these challenges your small group of 2-4 is given a short briefing. You must then design a solution/response to the issue. At stages during this design you have opportunities to report back on your progress, compare your results with those of other groups, receive supportive and ‘challenging’ feedback, handle some hard-hitting questions about your plans, and benefit from interim coaching.
Pre-empt difficult situations
Many difficult situations and questions can be pre-empted or deflected by using the two NLP Language Models from your NLP Practitioner. In fact, one of the major differences between this Train the Trainer and conventional training and presenting skills programmes is the level of skill we aim for in how to use language skilfully – and at the level of unconscious competence.
Welcome difficult situations…
And since you cannot pre-empt every potential difficulty you will learn how to handle these with skill. You may even find yourself welcoming them. When you skilfully handle difficult situations and people you increase your credibility and your standing in the eyes of the group.
I already present training programmes
You can treat Train the Trainer as a career development opportunity to widen and deepen your repertoire of skills so that you can reach a wider range of people.
(4) How market yourself and your work
Does Train the Trainer deal with marketing
Yes. This is important: having a great training programme is not very useful if nobody knows about it. When you market a training programme to the general public your income depends on who turns up. When you market a workshop or programme within your organisation your credibility, and your future career, is influenced by who turns up.
We examine how to market your services
(1) In-house: how to market to others within your organisation and
(2) The general public: how to identify your market with the public and then build up your training and/or coaching practice.
You will have the opportunity to begin your marketing plan in Module 1 and continue this through the other two modules. In this time you will encounter new methods and insights to include in your project, opportunities to discuss with, and get feedback from, colleagues and trainers.
The marketing modules in Train the Trainer are presented by Reg Connolly and draw upon nearly four decades experience of self-marketing.
Develop your brand
Your ‘brand’ is the set of feelings which people link with you. These result from the thinking which you provoke in their minds by how you come across, how you interact with them, and the value which they get from associating with you.
Everyone has a brand, whether or not they have created this deliberately. This is because, through the Anchoring Phenomenon, people associate feelings with us. And you will have the opportunity to develop your brand as part of the on-going marketing stream/theme in the programme.
How do I know I’ve done a good job?
As a trainer or facilitator it is wise to adopt the maxim ‘you’re as good as your last workshop’ since this will encourage you to avoid getting set in your ways, settling into a Comfort Zone, or becoming complacent. And, importantly, it reminds us that our “performance” doesn’t matter – what matters is the results that participants in our workshops achieve.
And these results cannot be measured by “happy sheets” handed out at the end of training when everybody is in a good mood. They are measured by how your participants are using and benefiting from what they have learned - during the weeks following the training programme.
That’s why it’s important to intersperse many techniques for ensuring they do, indeed, use and benefit from their experience with you.
Why do I need ‘sell to’ and motivate my learners?
Because you want them to use the material after the training.
It’s not enough to deliver information – we need to make sure it is used after the training. Every piece topic has to be “sold” to each participant i.e. you have to help them find personal value in it. This “selling” has to occur when first introducing the topic, it has to be woven into how the topic is explored, and it has to be continued in the review of the topic.
If you do this they will use the material after the workshop. If you do not do this… it’s hit and miss.
How to enable your participants to find value in the material your participants is covered a number times during the programme.
(5) Various other questions
Do I need to stay on site?
No, you can commute daily. We do recommend that you allow a little extra time in the Lodge to work with your coaching group. This can be arranged with your coaching group and is usually either in the morning, before the training day begins, or at the end of the day and immediately after the training day.
I don’t want to share a room in the Lodge
Nowadays our Train the Trainer and Master Practitioner Programmes have single-occupancy rooms available in Avon Lodge.
I have a question about certification at the end of the programme
Check the certification page on this site
I may have to miss some days
This is unlikely to be a problem as we can arrange for you to make up the learning credits on one of our other training programmes. Check the certification page. Or contact us to talk about it.
Can I pay for the course through extended payments?
Yes, check the details on this page.