Many companies in the past have relied heavily on instructor-led training (ILT). Typically, the courses are conducted in-person, allowing groups to move forward together and benefit from the instructor's expertise and the knowledge of everyone taking part.
As the coronavirus outbreak forced businesses all across the country to shutter their doors and embrace the work-from-home approach, in-person training hasn't been an option.
Luckily, there is an alternative available. With Virtual Instructor-Led Training (vILT), businesses can offer the same instructional experience regardless of whether everyone can be in the same physical space.
Traditional methodologies will need a makeover, and developing ways to foster genuine human connection will be critical. Amid an unprecedented period of transformation and disruption, the importance of having genuinely practical training and development can hardly be overstated.
One of the major challenges when moving to virtual learning is carrying over your goals and expectations. When it comes to virtual learning, a clear focus on the program goal is critical.
Follow these five steps to swiftly—and effectively—convert your instructor-led training (ILT) to a virtual format without losing an ounce of instructional integrity.
- Pinpoint the key learning objectives of the existing ILT. What are the things you want/need people to know/be able to do?
- Identify what existing ILT content is linked to those goals, then curate what to keep and what can go.
- Portion the existing ILT content into logical "buckets" and think about how to sequence it. What should be taught first? Should each topic have its session, or should some topics be combined?
- Pinpoint what content can be completed offline (think pre-work, reading, and assessments) and what content requires facilitation (presentation of concepts, discussion-based content).
- If your content requires multiple sessions, think about what learners can do before and between each virtual instructor-led training (vILT) session. Try to build accountability for these tasks (cohorts or partners working together) and build contingencies in learning when this work does not get completed.
Tools to Speed Up Your Conversion
Here are some tools that you might find beneficial in launching virtual learning for larger groups:
- Polls are a great way to gather info in the moment and can build engagement for a live presentation.
- Whiteboards are a terrific tool to enable collaboration in real-time. Individuals can share thoughts and ideas while adding elements to a communal space, helping them feel more connected to the training.
- Chat windows, or the capability to "raise your hand" to talk, ensures that everyone has the opportunity to provide feedback—even those who might be introverted and normally reticent to add their voice at an in-person gathering.
- Breakout rooms are an great way to do synchronous, more profound work to bring back to the larger group. It would help if you considered providing additional instructions to ensure people know what they're doing. A moderator or facilitator can also ensure that the virtual rooms are working as anticipated and address any questions or issues that pupils may have.