Riding the Tail of the Tiger

Skills for Trainers Riding the Tail of the Tiger

Have you considered the various roles of a trainer? We have, and it is surely as exciting and adventurous as riding the tail of a tiger!

In the past few Capacity Train the Trainer workshops we have brainstormed and discussed the roles of a trainer. And the list has grown! We are amazed at the number of roles and scope of skills required to be effective as a trainer.

Here, in alphabetical order, are many of the different faces of a trainer:

  • Actor
  • Assessor
  • Cheerleader
  • Clarifier
  • Coach
  • Comic
  • Conflict manager
  • Counsellor
  • Decision-maker
  • Delegator
  • Demonstrator
  • Designer
  • Disseminator of information
  • Distributor of materials
  • Evaluator
  • Facilitator
  • Guide
  • Implementor
  • Interpreter
  • Leader
  • Learner
  • Liaison
  • Listener
  • Master of ceremonies (MC)
  • Mentor
  • Motivator
  • Note taker
  • Organizer
  • Presenter
  • Questioner
  • Question answerer
  • Record keeper
  • Referee
  • Role model
  • Summarizer
  • Synthesizer
  • Teacher
  • Thinker (on your feet)
  • Time Manager
  • Unbiased supporter to participants
  • Writer

Wow! We do all of that? It is no surprise that the training vocation offers a fertile arena for carving out such a challenging and rewarding career. When you consider that we are also privileged to be involved in each learner’s growth, it becomes a very attractive addition to any leadership position.

Looking over this list, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed at the idea that we have to be all these things. Don’t be daunted by that. The best part of being a trainer is that we can be ourselves and let our strengths shine through. For example, are you a great joke teller? Are you skilled at telling short stories to emphasize your point? Are you artistic? If so, use any of these skills to your advantage by incorporating them into your style.

You do not have to be perfect (whew!) to be an effective trainer. In fact, it’s far more valuable to be yourself and to be human. Awareness is the first step in personal growth. Being conscious of what is involved as a trainer, and how those things relate to your personality will be lead you from the known into the unknown. By concentrating on the positives in yourself and your participants, you will laugh lots and get ready for a wild, exhilarating ride!

The business of training has:

  • forced me to develop stronger communication skills
  • coerced me to expand my comfort zone
  • enriched me with many, many friendships
  • thrilled me with adventure after adventure
  • surprised and impressed me with the range of human diversity
  • humbled me with all the positive learning and growth
  • entertained me with interaction, adventure, laughter and fun
  • challenged me to be a better me

Thank you to the participants of Capacity Train the Trainer for your input on this and so many other topics! If I weren’t already a trainer, I would sacrifice a lot to become one!

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