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The Trainer's Handbook by Karen Lawson

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Chapter 10Working with Groups

The Trainer as Facilitator

Standing up in front of a group and presenting information is one thing; facilitating discussion and interaction is another. Each requires a different set of skills. If you accept the changing role of the trainer—from “teacher” to “facilitator”—then you will have to understand and develop facilitation skills.

Any time you work with a group in a participant-centered environment instead of talking at that group, you are facilitating the learning process. Facilitation skills are particularly critical for processing activities, as discussed in Chapter 8.

The most important thing to remember about your responsibilities as a trainer is that you are a role model. How you conduct yourself verbally and nonverbally determines how participants conduct themselves.

Ways to Encourage Participation

Your behavior throughout the session sends a message that either encourages or discourages participation. Sometimes these messages are pretty straightforward; sometimes they are much more subtle. Not only are these subtle messages communicated without our awareness, but their impact can be quite powerful.

Nonverbal Communication

What you do often speaks more loudly than what you say. Use the power of these nonverbal communication techniques ...

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