How to Set up a Training Course

Training is the life blood of business. Businesses need to ensure that their employees know how to provide customer service, understand its products or services, work safely and efficiently and use existing and new equipment. Training courses can be as short as one or two hours or can last days for a new employee.

Know your subject. It is important that you know the subject you are going to train others on. Even if you have a lot of experience, check yourself. Do you know the latest changes in procedures, regulations or policies? Make sure what you put out is correct and that you become a subject expert in what you are going to instruct. If you're not, then get someone who is to train in those areas of your session.

Set up a lesson plan. Write down a list of training objectives or goals. Put them in order and under each put the sub tasks you want the employees to learn. Estimate how much time you will need for each section or block of training. This should include a goal, specific training, hands-on training, if appropriate, and evaluation.

Plan and coordinate the training area. Ensure that the training area is reserved for your use for the time you need to train. Classroom instruction needs to be in a reasonably quiet area free of danger or distractions. If you are training in a customer area, you may want to identify trainees with special name tags or paper badges.

Gather necessary supplies and training aides. Collect pens, pencils, writing paper, handouts, audio visual materials, white boards and whatever other classroom materials you need. Are there DVDs that need to be ordered or special instructional material? Make certain that you can get everything you need before training begins. The trainer needs to improvise if the right materials are not available. Use a copier to make copies if the printer will not have them ready. Check all the equipment the day before training to ensure that it all works. Be prepared to computers and audio visual aide malfunctions by having a back up plan.

Many training programs will need actual equipment to practice on. This may be bar code readers, cash registers, forklifts, machinery, power tools or vehicles. Coordinate their availability and make sure that there are ways to conduct training without adversely effecting company operations. Other employees normally will be happy to help if they think the training will help the company succeed. Make certain you can operate all the equipment to be demonstrated or have someone assist you who can.

Rehearse before you start a training course and always do a walk through of all instruction. This helps imprint in you mind what you will do with the trainees. It will make you more confident and allow you for find glitches in you planning. You may forgot a step or find that a computer program has changed or the forklift you were to use has a flat tire. Don't skip this step.

Always introduce yourself and take a written training attendance when the course begins. This does two things: ensures everyone knows who you are and that the class has begun, and allows a good attendance record for the human resources training records. Plan for company breaks and lunch. Let the trainees ask questions and if they ask something you don't know, use the breaks to find out.

Evaluations can simply mean that everyone graduates if re-training on updated procedures and policies for existing employees. They can also be a visual evaluation by the trainer with a pass or no pass criteria or you can have a trainer provide a written and practical test. There should always be provisions for additional instruction for anyone that does not understand a particular task to standards.


  • Prepare to work around failed computer slides or other equipment failures. When possible, do hands-on training; it is retained better and faster than classroom instruction. Keep training pertinent to your goals.


  • Do not try to train something you are not prepared to teach; it will go badly and your credibility will suffer. Make certain that you are familiar with any equipment you are going to use, that you are not locked out by passwords, surprised by changes in procedure or company policy. Don't be afraid to ask for help.


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