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Product Training for the Technical Expert

Book Description

I was pleased to review Dan's new book - pleased because he addresses an old topic in a new way. He is making no assumptions for trainers who are not fully experienced and seasoned. He takes them step-by-step through practical and realistic methods to set up training graduates to actually be on-the-job performers. Enjoy, learn and be inspired. 

Jim Kirkpatrick, PhD
Senior Consultant, Kirkpatrick Partners, USA

Daniel Bixby’s approach to Product Training for technical experts is practical, relevant and exactly what anyone who is required to train others on technical content really needs. He writes with candor and with a sense of ease, making the reader feel as though he is right there with you helping to develop your training competency. A must read for anyone on your team required to provide technical training to others!

Jennifer Alfaro

Chief Human Resources Officer, USA

An expert guide to developing and delivering technical product training programs

While there are many books on talent development, leadership training, and internal training program development, there are precious few offering subject matter experts (SME’s) guidance on training others to get the most out of their products. Written by a training expert with many years of experience working at top technology companies, Product Training for the Technical Expert fills that yawning gap in the training literature by providing technical experts with a comprehensive handbook on becoming effective product training instructors.

When new technology is rapidly transformed into products for popular consumption, technical experts, such as engineers, and other subject matter experts, are the ones tasked with instructing the public on their use. Unfortunately, most them have little or no prior experience or training in adult education and don’t have a clue about how to transfer their knowledge to others. In this book, author Daniel W. Bixby draws upon his vast experience developing and delivering training programs at Honeywell, Delphax, Telex, Bosch, and TE Connectivity, among other technology companies, to arm SMEs with the knowledge and skills they need to add “Product Training Specialist” to their resumes.

  • Addresses an area of training too often overlooked and ignored in the professional literature
  • Equips SMEs with the tools they need to become effective product instructors
  • Covers both the educational and business aspects of product training for SMEs
  • Packed with tables, illustrations, problem-and-solution sets, tutorials, enlightening real-world examples, worksheets, and group or self-study questions
  • Features a companion website with worksheets and other valuable tools: www.wiley.com/go/bixbycert
  • A must-have professional development resource for students and experienced technical experts alike

Product Training for the Technical Expert is an ideal guide forengineers, product managers, product marketing managers, and technical instructors looking to expand their repertoires and hone their skills. It also makes an excellent course text for graduate-level engineering programs.

Table of Contents

  1. Cover
  2. Title Page
  3. Foreword
  4. Preface
  5. Acknowledgments
  6. How to Use This Book
  7. About the Companion Website
  8. Introduction
  9. Part I: The Foundation of Hands‐On Learning
    1. 1 Hands‐On Learning in the Classroom
      1. Product Training as You Know It
      2. What Makes Training Effective?
      3. Your Goal: Proficiency
      4. Articulating Your Training Approach
      5. Conclusion
      6. Making It Practical
    2. 2 Experiencing Learning
      1. How Does One Develop a Skill?
      2. Remember How You Became an Expert
      3. Build on Your Students’ Experiences
      4. Create Experiences in the Classroom
      5. Let Them Learn from Negative Experiences
      6. Capitalize on Informal Learning
      7. Allow Students to Share Their Experiences
      8. Give Lecture and Observation Their Rightful Place
      9. Provide a Structure for Your Hands‐On Training
      10. Conclusion
      11. Making It Practical
    3. 3 You Know It, Can You Teach It?
      1. Address Your Biggest Challenge: Yourself
      2. The Four Stages of Competency Applied to Instructors
      3. How Experts Can Teach It
      4. Conclusion
      5. Making It Practical
    4. 4 Ready or Not?
      1. The Four Principles of Learner‐Readiness
      2. Conclusion
      3. Making It Practical
  10. Part II: The Strategy of Hands‐On Learning
    1. 5 It is Never Just Product Training
      1. Product Solution Training Versus Talent Development
      2. Employee Product Training
      3. Customer Product Training
      4. Business Plan
      5. Conclusion
      6. Making It Practical
    2. 6 From Good to Great
      1. Aim at the Right Target: Doing Versus Knowing
      2. Change the Approach: Facilitator Versus Lecturer
      3. Call It the Right Thing: Training Versus Presentation
      4. Make It Sustainable: Standardized Versus Customized
      5. Measure the Right Things: Performance Versus Reactions
      6. Value the Right Things: Results Versus Head Count
      7. Use the Right Delivery Methods: Effectiveness Versus Availability
      8. Continue the Conversation: Process Versus Event
      9. Keep Improving: Progress Versus Contentment
      10. Conclusion
      11. Making It Practical
    3. 7 What Is Expected Must Be Inspected
      1. Assessing the Individual
      2. Evaluating the Class
      3. Conclusion
      4. Making It Practical
  11. Part III: The Structure of Hands‐On Learning
    1. 8 Dethroning King Content
      1. When Content Is King
      2. Is Training the Solution?
      3. Conclusion
      4. Making It Practical
    2. 9 Designing for Proficiency
      1. The 4 × 8 Proficiency Design Model
      2. Level 1
      3. Level 2
      4. Level 3
      5. Level 4
      6. Conclusion
      7. Making It Practical
    3. 10 Pixels or Paper?
      1. Ask the Questions Again
      2. Create a Student Guide
      3. Create Your Visual Aids
      4. Statement of Indemnification
      5. Create an Instructor’s Guide
      6. Running a Pilot Class
      7. Conclusion
      8. Making It Practical
  12. Part IV: The Facilitation of Hands‐On Learning
    1. 11 Speak Up
      1. Decorative Speaking
      2. Declarative Speaking
      3. Conclusion
      4. Making It Practical
    2. 12 Shut Up
      1. What You Are Listening for
      2. The Foundation for Engaging Learning
      3. Practical Engagement in the Classroom
      4. Icebreakers, Games, and Other Interactive Options
      5. Conclusion
      6. Making It Practical
    3. 13 Stand Up
      1. Observed Communication: What They See You Saying
      2. Perceived Communication: What They Feel You Are Saying
      3. Environmental Influences
      4. Hosting a Training Event
      5. Conclusion
      6. Making It Practical
    4. 14 The Smartest Engineer
      1. Set the Expectations at the Beginning
      2. Be Prepared for Difficult Responses
      3. The Stubborn Mule
      4. The Pessimist
      5. The Helper
      6. The Talker
      7. The Extreme Introvert
      8. The Sleeper
      9. The Expert
      10. Conclusion
      11. Making It Practical
    5. 15 Virtual Facilitation
      1. What Doesn’t Change
      2. Facilitating Virtually
      3. Conclusion
      4. Making It Practical
    6. 16 Technical Presentations
      1. When to Use Presentations
      2. How to Design Effective Technical Presentations
      3. Conclusion
      4. Making It Practical
    7. 17 Culture and Proficiency
      1. What Doesn’t Change
      2. What Does Change
      3. Other Tips for the Traveling Trainer
      4. Conclusion
      5. Making It Practical
  13. Part V: The Operation of Hands‐On Learning
    1. 18 Certifying Proficiency
      1. What Is Product Proficiency Certification?
      2. When Do You Need a Certification Program?
      3. The Requirements of Product Proficiency Certification
      4. Documenting the Certification Program
      5. Conclusion
      6. Making It Practical
    2. 19 Managing the Details
      1. Measurable
      2. Sustainable
      3. Traceable
      4. Conclusion
      5. Making It Practical
    3. 20 Developing New Product Talent
      1. Why Mentoring Matters
      2. Mentoring for Proficiency
      3. The Foundation of a Mentoring Program
      4. Conclusion
      5. Making It Practical
    4. 21 Now, Go Do It
      1. Define Your Approach
      2. Develop with a Strategy
      3. Design with a Structure
      4. Deliver with a Purpose
      5. Don’t Forget the Details
      6. Conclusion
      7. Making It Practical
  14. Part VI: For the Boss: Executive Overviews
    1. 22 The Foundation of Hands‐On Learning
      1. An Overview
      2. How You Can Help
      3. Conclusion
    2. 23 The Strategy of Hands‐On Learning
      1. Overview
      2. How You Can Help
      3. Conclusion
    3. 24 The Structure of Hands‐On Learning
      1. Overview
      2. How You Can Help
      3. Conclusion
    4. 25 The Facilitation of Hands‐On Learning
      1. Overview
      2. How You Can Help
      3. Conclusion
    5. 26 The Operation of Hands‐On Learning
      1. Overview
      2. How You Can Help
      3. Conclusion
  15. Index
  16. End User License Agreement