What It Takes to Train a Trainer

I had the opportunity to attend a 5 day certification titled Train The Trainer (TTT) under Pembangunan Sumber Manusia Berhad (PSMB) a few months ago. A very common topic in the world of training.

After what seemed a long weekend with the family due to being mid-season for durian lovers, I woke up at 5am on Monday morning 18 July 2011. It was not so much due to excitement of going to a seminar and learning new things but more of the fear being caught in heavy Monday morning traffic on the Federal Highway near Angkasapuri all the way to Hotel Singgahsana, Petaling Jaya.

The class was scheduled to begin at 9:00am. Due to leaving home very early that morning, I arrived at the venue just before 730am. After having a light breakfast, I proceeded to the seminar room and along with my business partner, we were among the first to arrive. After being seated for several minutes, it is always fun to watch WHO is the person that would be teaching us for this course.

All I can recall was seeing a mid aged gentleman in a smart pin striped suit briskly walk into the room with his hands full of training material and stuff. He looked in a rush, a bit confused and something was bothering him. Only later did we know that he was not his usual self that day because by his personal standards over almost 2 decades as a trainer, to appear at the venue less than 1 hour before commencing class is considered as being very LATE.

For him, this was the 2nd time in almost 20 years that this has happened. A typical trainer might just say “1 hour? 30 mins already good enough what?”. It was not the case for our sifu and lead assessor for this class, Mr. Timothy Law.

The class took off with an excellent energetic introduction by our lead assessor, Mr. Timothy Law (as the days progressed we referred to him as Tim or Hj Tim).  In the very first segment of this 5 day certification, Tim outlined in full detail and firmness what was expected from each and everyone of us. No ifs no buts. His mission was to see us complete the course fulfilling all the necessary requirements. He was committed to share and guide us through this course with all the bells and whistles so we could then later on make a difference in the lives of others outside the classroom.

Every segment of the 5 day session was plan thoroughly and executed bit by bit, piece by piece, 1 step at a time so that the session was FULL of sharing not only from the facilitator but also more from the participants. All 20 of us came from different backgrounds. Engineering, Physics, Counselling, IT, Art, Retail, Aviation, ISO and many more. The participants combination alone was more than enough to create excitement.

My opinion of the session was more to 5 days of sharing and learning. I’m sure we’ve all been to those 2 – 5 day seminars/courses where the facilitators just sit in front and talk talk talk talk talk….. BORRRRING! Its not just knowing the theory but to enable others by embracing and practising it is the major challenge.

To be an outstanding trainer, among some characteristics that I can summarize from the experience through this course are :

  • Diverse Experience (eg : Tim is a qualified scuba driving instructor, has corporate experience at the top management level, went through a culinary arts certification and a fantastic musician – violin, saxophone)
  • A Good Actor/Performer
  • High Tech
  • High Standards
  • Well Read
  • Articulate
  • Firm but Nice
  • Delivers the Message Well
  • Humble
  • Do as I Do –> Walk the Talk
During this course, we were also introduced to Dr Alex Ow who is the Chief Strategist of TTT for PSMB not just for this session but also one of the pioneer designers at the point of inception by the Ministry of Human Resource several years ago. A very humble person, Dr Alex has a personal style that attracts participants to always want to know more of what he has to share and demonstrates the theories of TTT very well.

At the end of the 5 days was our final assessment, the individual 15 minute presentation. It was properly designed, demonstrated, validated and delivered by each participants with live commentary and full class participation over almost 10 hours.

What then is the main point for training? Yes, nice hotel, nice room, nice people and damn good food. A thick file of  notes. More importantly the ability not only to learn but to bring out the knowledge, share, demonstrate and disseminate OUTSIDE the classroom.

So if you have the resources, don’t miss out to attend the TTT by PSMB (IRS Resources) for it may just change your life.

2 Responses to “What It Takes to Train a Trainer”
  1. amir says:

    was looking for alumni irs ttt facebook; cant find it yet, impressive blog n impressive person ….senior sdarian

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