Remake yourself into a more engaging trainer.

What are your top strategies for making classroom training a success? Jennifer Clark, procurement services training manager, University of Alabama, described three roles that good trainers should portray. She explained, “In my opinion, a good trainer is part showman, part talk show host, and part subject matter expert. It takes all three of these roles to get the participants engaged, make them comfortable in the environment, and impress upon them the importance of the material.”

All sorts of jobs require you to deliver training at some point, whether P-Card training or other. Be the best trainer you can be; it's an attribute of being a great a leader

Following are Jennifer’s training strategies in her own words...

Being a Showman

The first thing to focus on is getting and keeping participants’ attention. I find it helpful to incorporate several tactics to combat the dreaded head bob:

 Good trainers achieve success by fulfilling three roles: showman, talk show host and subject matter expert.

Good trainers achieve success by fulfilling three roles: showman, talk show host and subject matter expert.

Appealing Slides

Make the slides fresh and appealing. Standard PowerPoint templates make it easy to put the information on the screen, but they are hardly memorable. I try to use lots of images and minimal text. No one wants to hear a trainer simply read the slides anyway.

Pre-Class Actions 

Start on a good note. I’ve had great results from playing music before class, using silly animations (sparingly please!), or passing around real-world examples.

Anecdotes and Examples

Keep things upbeat and lively by including ample anecdotes and examples. Tailor the scenarios to fit the audience. It is much easier for participants to remember information if you can help them conceptualize how it applies to their jobs.

Audience Participation

Work in opportunities for audience participation—anything that sets the mood for a fun, informative session.


See more tips from Jennifer, including how to fulfill the other two roles (talk show host and subject matter expert). Then check out other training-related content from Recharged Education. 


About the Author

Blog post author Lynn Larson, CPCP, is the founder of Recharged Education. With more than 15 years of Commercial Card experience, her mission is to make industry education readily accessible to all. Learn more

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