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We are proud to support this month CSTD’s Learn @ Work Week running from September 19th through 23th. The purpose of this event is to raise awareness of the impact of workplace learning and to celebrate the best practices of training programs.

The idea of accommodating all learning preferences during a training session can be daunting. It is natural to fall back on your own learning preferences when teaching; however, trainers need to actively plan to meet the diverse learning needs of all participants.

You can anticipate the learning needs of a group by using cues such as pre-session conversations, work role information, and information from type reports to build an impression of the personality types in the group. When using this information, avoid stereotyping and expect type diversity even in groups with identical work roles.

Plan a balance of activities. For example, allow time for reflection before starting a group exercise, share outlines and overviews as well as facts and details, and provide some flexibility within a structured day. Make sure icebreakers, designed to develop rapport, serve a practical or logical purpose. Demonstrate a friendly, competent approach. Try providing your credentials within a handout; some people want to see these, yet others may find it pretentious for you to state them all up front.

One way to plan your session to accommodate all learners is to consider the learning preferences associated with the eight dominant functions. Use the following checklist to determine if you are incorporating training strategies that appeal to all personality types in your session.

For more information on this topic see Donna’s new booklet “Introduction to Type® and Learning”.

Learning Preferences Checklist

Responders (ESTP and ESFP)

  • Include activities in which participants can move around
  • Provide links to practical applications
  • Engage the senses with color, texture, scents or sounds

Explorers (ENTP and ENFP)

  • Provide opportunities to generate or explore ideas
  • Introduce ideas with an overview or conceptual framework
  • Link material to other applications and frameworks

Expeditors (ESTJ and ENTJ)

  • Demonstrate competence of trainers and credibility of information
  • Provide a logical rationale for activities
  • Provide opportunities to question or debate information or ideas

Contributors (ESFJ and ENFJ)

  • Include activities to build group rapport
  • Provide opportunities to cooperate and collaborate
  • Deliver in a pleasant physical environment

Assimilators (ISTJ and ISFJ)

  •  Use well-organized structure and follow a clear agenda
  • Provide useful and practical information
  • Include facts, details and links to experience of participants

Visionaries (INTJ and INFJ)

  • Provide additional resources for interested participants
  • Use precise language to discuss complex concepts and ideas
  • Integrate information from a variety of sources

Analyzers (ISTP and INTP)

  • Use efficient design and implementation
  • Provide information in a logical manner
  • Include challenges or problem solving

Enhancers (ISFP and INFP)

  • Explore the personal meaning and significance of learning
  • Provide support and encouragement for participants
  • Consider the unique situation and needs of each participant

Reproduced from the Type and Training booklet by Donna Dunning with permission from the publisher, CPP, Inc., U.S.A. Copyright 2007 by CPP, Inc. All rights reserved.

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