Top of the pops – The show must go on

The group were teleported back in time through music and costumes to the British 70’s music scene.

The unforgettable session/show was led by Luca, Dalia, Victor, Henrique and Mohammed. Dressed as their respective alter egos: Ken Adams, Pink, Robbie Williams, Slash and 50 Cent. They led us through ‘Top of the Tips’ for being the most AWESOME TRAINER that we all aim to become.

First Dalia showed us in practice the difference between agitated breathing and a calm and connected one and then guided us through a breathing exercise, after which Victor pointed out the rationale behind it.

It was then the turn of Henrique, who in the skin of a rock star went through a top 20 list of aspects to keep in mind when delivering a training course, such as:

  • The importance of breathing.
  • Don’t be afraid of your language ability: in international environments, we all have a different pronunciation or accent and we all are going to make mistakes, and that is just fine.
  • Experience vs. Innovation: remember that trainers can always learn from participants too! “If you are the most knowledgable in the room, then it’s time to leave the room”. You should keep a balance between experience and innovation, because if you keep on what you already know you will stop practicing, and that will eventually lead you to mediocrity.
  • Water: keep hydrated. It’s good for the mind!
  • Coffee break: the importance of changing space for the group to disconnect, also to avoid participants disrupting the session by going for refreshments during the sessions. Speaking of refreshment breaks, Henrique also highlighted the importance of respecting the timing of the breaks, starting and ending on time.
  • Acknowledgement: acknowledge the good rather than the gap (something they lack, they need to improve).
  • Listen to their feedback: be open to what they need to share, and create a space so they feel free to do so.
  • Check the environment and ensure the space is as safe as possible for the activities that you have planned.
  • Keep the mood and motivation levels up: the success of the session depends on this.
  • Night activities: remember that lack of sleep and alcohol would affect your performance the next day.
  • Keep the control of the sessions: don’t get distracted with discussions which are irrelevant to the session. Limit options, because everyone will have a different opinion and will end up taking the session in a completely different direction.
  • Let off steam. When that annoying participant made your patience run out or things are getting too much for you. Take a break, find your inner peace before you do or say something you may regret.
  • Never forget your first time: there will be ….. Good moments in the back of your mind, to remind you of your motivation during the low moments.

Mohammed disseminated for us the top 8 Do’s and Don’ts of a trainer:

  1. Be happy. That’s the main reason why you should be there in the first place.
  2. Be competent: Know the topic you’re going to deliver in the session. It’s recommended the each 1 hour workshop, has around 9 hours of research and preparation.
  3. Lead by example: Don’t complain, be positive, punctual, creative, and engaging.
  4. Keep your promises. The same that you ask (and expect) participants to deliver what you ask them to do and do it in time for example you should post that text or share that document you’ve promised them to when you said you will do it.
  5. Authoritas vs Authority: learn when to use your position of power to clarify boundaries and when to guide participants to realise boundaries. Authoritas use your position to help the participants to discipline themselves. Authority is a more direct approach. Such as challenging difficult behaviour or poor punctuality.
  6. Create your own policy: decide how YOU want to be as a trainer. Questions such as whether to befriend participants or to keep your distance on a personal level. Be an individual: create your own style to deal with situations. Your policy will develop with time and experience. Identify your core principles as a trainer.
  7. Acknowledge achievement: Recognise success and good work of participants. Give them constructive feedback on areas for improvement. It’s recommended that you give feedback on a 6:1 ratio.
  8. Don’t panic when things don’t go according to plan. It’s guaranteed that they won’t always. Accept it and be prepared for it.

         – Rachel, Spain