Am I Training or am I Selling

When training in the Financial Services Sector I often feel like I am selling rather than training such is the mind set of the participants.

The first thing I have to do is convince the participants that they will benefit by attending the training then convince them that I have the necessary skills and knowledge and only then will they open their minds to learning something new.

This can be a fairly long process and when you have only been given one day to improve the their ability to sell or negotiate it can be neigh on impossible.

The usual outcome is that by the end of the workshop you have got them to acknowledge their areas of improvement but do not have enough time to work on them.

It never ceases to amaze me that when asked the question do you know why you are here so many participants respond with "no".

When faced with a group such as this I know I am going to have to spend time explaining and selling the reason they are attending the workshop.

However just when you think you are winning you are confronted with illogical thinking as i was recently.

When trying to convince a participant of the benefits of being better, he agreed that yes it was critical to his job that he was able to deliver persuasive presentations, and yes having watched a video of himself presenting he acknowledged that he  needs to  improve to achieve the level required of him to be successful, but know he didn't feel time practicing was worth while.

As they say in selling 'you can't win them all.'

Valuable time is lost convincing the participations of the merits of the training which should be better spent on improving their skills.

If only line-managers and HR would better prepare the participants when attending a training course then the time spent on training rather than selling would be greatly improved.

Why line-managers do not speak to their staff before going on a training course is a matter for debate.

Sending an email informing the participants of their attendance and reason for attending would be a good start.

Their is much discussion about measuring the effects and success of training, this is impossible if people are not even informed as to why they are attending in the first place.