Posted in writing

Training Audience ~ 2013-1113


Simply stated there are three types of learners:

1. Learners who welcome change, are open to it, and will work hard to learn and implement the new ideas and skills.

2. Learners who are in neutral. They can be pushed either way – forward or backwards. These learners are okay no matter what.

3. Learners who are resistant to change because change hurts or will cause them to stretch.

When planning training, plan for those resistant to change first by asking and answering the questions below:

  • What are the preconceived notions, values, and beliefs the change resisters hold when arriving on the first day of training?
  • What will help your overcome the resistance – words? data? experiences? experiments? or all of the above?
  • What are the changes to be implemented?
  • Will they involve new tasks/responsibilities/theories/work philosophy?
  • How will the changes take place?
  • What are the results of the proposed change?
  • It there historical data?
  • Have other companies successfully completed this change and improved?

The best way to address change in training is to work on improving the attitude toward the change. Provide success stories, statistics, and outcome studies to support change is good. Additionally, role play change practices by having learners implement the change. “Attitude change follows rather than precedes behavior change.” Practicing the change assists in improving the attitude change desired.

Final tips:

Don’t make learners change everything at once.

  1. Present bite-sized pieces that are easy to implement
  2. Then present bite-sized pieces that aren’t easy to implement

Focus on changing behaviors not attitudes.

  1. Direct most of your training having learners practice the proposed change
  2. Direct much less time providing the rationale for the change or trying to convince the learners of the value of the change.

CITE: Kagan, L. (2007). Dynamic Trainer! San Clemente. CA. Kagan Publishing Company



Dr. Sheila Embry is a govie, author, pracademician, sister, aunt, cousin, and friend who loves to read, write, think, and laugh. Many of her blog postings are summaries or excerpts of books that she read and wants to share to encourage others. An author with more than 25 years experience within the legislative and executive branches of the U. S. federal government holding 3 accredited degrees: Doctor of Management in Organizational Leadership, Master of Arts in Human Resources Development, and Baccalaureate of Business Administration, she believes in continuing learning both on and off the job. She has been recognized with multiple professional and writing awards for her peer-reviewed, publications. Click the bibliography page above for a listing of all the publications.

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