The pandemic forced people and businesses to move all their interactions, meetings, and trainings online, requiring many to adopt and use technologies they might not have needed earlier.
A daunting task for the less tech savvy amongst us. But, from every challenge arises new opportunities. We, at The Learning Gym, have used this time to test out and develop best practices for some of the typical tools used in our training spaces.
“Where might I have challenges when using Google Jamboard?”
“How do I determine which tech tool I should use when designing my training program?”
“Do I need to have a paid account to effectively use all these cool training tech tools and platforms?”
SELECTING THE RIGHT TOOLS
With so many options out there to choose from, how do you pick the right tool, for your training activity? Here are some questions that we found useful to help select the most optimal tools for each context.
The first step or question to answer is “what is the purpose?” The purpose could be what you hope the activity or the tool to achieve. Other considerations are:
- Your budget
- Tech comfort of the facilitator
- Tech comfort of the participants
- IT security (bandwidth, firewalls and country bans i.e. Google in China)
- Availability of time
- Participants’ mode of access – desktops, tablets or mobiles?
Similar to picking the right workout style for your fitness goals, workout preferences and availability, we’ve experimented with a few tech tools to find what works for us. Other than just experimenting with platform tools like Microsoft Forms, Kahoot, Mentimeter, and Yammer, we also tested simpler webinar functions like breakout rooms and encouraging dialogue by unmuting; to see what works best for our clients.
To get some insight into the factors that are usually considered when selecting which training tools to use, we created this Padlet board to compare and explore different tools
WARMING UP IS IMPORTANT
When training at the gym, we warm our bodies up before starting our main workout. Similarly, before we begin our training sessions, we conduct pre-session checks to help participants navigate the technology and get used to the typical functions. This is important to ensure that any challenges the participants have are only those related to the topic of the training, and not those stemming from using the platform/tool. Technology should be used to enable and support learning, not make life difficult or distracting for the user.
Stay tuned for our next blog post, in which we explore six of our most used technology tools, and how we apply them in our virtual training sessions.