Professional development is more important than ever—especially for millennial and Gen Z employees looking to advance their careers. But a study by Oracle found that 85% of employees are unhappy with the support they receive from companies. Thirty-four percent of those surveyed want more learning and development opportunities. In this article, we’ll explore the value of training meetings and how to design an effective training program. We’ll also look at how organizations leverage artificial intelligence to enhance training sessions.
What is the purpose of a training meeting?
A training meeting is an opportunity to develop essential skills and knowledge for a specific role. During these meetings, a facilitator presents information and guides participants through training exercises. Training meetings can occur in various contexts, including:
- Individual or one-on-one meetings
- Team meetings
- Company-wide training
- Guest speakers
- Training aimed at clients or customers
Training sessions benefit both employees and their employers. They improve employee performance by developing new skills and these sessions can be an opportunity for team building. With effective training meetings, companies improve collaboration and foster a culture of continuous improvement.
5 types of training meetings
Training events occur in different forms depending on the needs of an organization. Here are five common types of training meetings and the benefits they offer participants.
- Onboarding: Companies use onboarding meetings to train new employees. These sessions introduce new hires to the organization, its culture, and job responsibilities.
- Skills training: These sessions focus on building specific skills required for a position. This could include technical skills like learning new software. Training can also focus on soft skills, such as presentation skills.
- Compliance training: These meetings ensure that employees adhere to policies, laws, and regulations. Compliance training may include anti-harassment training, data security, or diversity and inclusion programs.
- Leadership training: Here, companies develop managerial skills for key leaders or those in supervisory positions. This could include communication, delegation, or conflict resolution.
- Product or service training: These trainings educate employees or clients about the organization’s products or services. They cover features, benefits, use cases, nuances, and customer support. They are also helpful when introducing a new product.
How to create an effective training session
Have you ever attended a training meeting you felt was unnecessary? Ineffective training meetings frustrate employees, reduce morale, and waste resources.
“Meetings are one of the rare activities at work that we can actually cost,” says Steven Rogelberg—Ph.D., professor and director of organizational science at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte.
On a recent episode of Deloitte’s WorkWell podcast, Rogelberg stresses understanding the financial impact of a meeting, “We can look at time by salaries and say this meeting costs this much money. So I like thinking of it as ‘what’s the return on that investment.’”
Here are three steps to designing a productive training meeting that resonates with your audience.
1. Plan ahead
When designing a training session, proper planning is essential. Since 65% of workers’ time is now spent in audio or video meetings, ensure you consider the context of the meeting. Will this be live or remote?
- Set clear objectives: Clearly define the purpose of the meeting and the outcome that you want to achieve. Ensure that you understand your audience and their goals.
- Develop a meeting agenda: Create a detailed schedule outlining the topics, sequence of activities, and timing.
- Prepare materials and activities: Determine the activities you will include—such as role-playing, case studies, quizzes, or group discussions. Ensure you introduce different activities to cater to various learning styles.
- Use visual aids: Include slides, videos, graphs, and other visual aids to help participants understand the concepts.
2. Facilitate the training
Leading a training meeting can be challenging. Facilitators have to present material while adjusting it to meet the needs of the participants.
“The best meetings have a leader in charge who is making sure that the experience is moving [and] asking the right questions—[so] that it doesn’t go off in tangents,” Rogelberg says. “The best meetings have an engaged leader [who ensures] people can bring their full selves to that meeting and know that they can have conflicts.”
Here are some tips for leading a training session.
- Set the tone: Start the meeting by setting expectations and sharing the training objectives and meeting agenda. Facilitators should encourage attendees to ask questions and participate.
- Be clear and concise: Use straightforward language to explain technical concepts. Avoid using jargon or acronyms that may be unfamiliar to participants.
- Provide opportunities for participation: Create time to ask if participants have questions. Consider using an anonymous question tool to help encourage participation from all employees.
- Build-in breaks: Even the most eager participants need breaks. A recent study by Microsoft’s Human Factor Lab found that employees experience fatigue after 30 to 40 minutes of concentration.
- Summarize critical points: End the meeting by reviewing key takeaways. Provide participants with resources for future reference or opportunities to continue learning.
3. Follow-up and feedback
After the session, reach out to participants for training evaluation. Create an anonymous survey to encourage participants to provide feedback. You can also provide additional training materials or ask for additional questions.
How to leverage AI and ChatGPT for effective training meetings
Generative AI is a type of artificial intelligence. It relies on machine learning and natural language processing. Examples of generative AI include ChatGPT and image generators. These systems generate content that resembles human-created content.
Trainers can create more effective meetings by adding AI platforms to their toolkits. Here are some ways that AI tools can be helpful for training meetings:
- Boost efficiency: AI automates elements of the training process, such as scheduling or sending post-meeting surveys.
- Enhance employee engagement: By incorporating AI-powered tools during training, facilitators create a more personalized and interactive experience.
- Improve accessibility: With AI, facilitators ensure training is more accessible to individuals with different learning preferences, needs, and abilities.
5 examples of using AI for training meetings
Whether you conduct training virtually or in person, AI tools optimize the experience. Here are five ways trainers can use AI platforms to enhance future training meetings.
- Note-taking: AI-powered note-taking tools—such as Supernormal—record and transcribe meetings, summarize discussions, and generate action items. This helps participants remain engaged and provide a resource they can refer to after the training.
- Automated scheduling and reminders: AI tools can automate administrative tasks, including scheduling and meeting reminders. This allows facilitators to focus on delivering high-quality training sessions.
- Content creation: Facilitators use AI platforms to generate content for training meetings. This includes presentations, visual aids, templates, or scripts for role-playing exercises.
- Conversational AI: Facilitators use chatbots to create real-life simulations to help participants practice their skills. At the same time, these tools can act as an additional resource for answering questions during meetings.
- Assessment and feedback: With AI, trainers test knowledge and analyze results in real time. This helps trainers identify areas for improvement and tailor the session to meet the needs of participants. Facilitators can also use AI platforms to send surveys and analyze feedback.
Take your training meetings to the next level with Supernormal
Effective training meetings improve employee performance and create a culture of lifelong learning. And with AI-powered tools like Supernormal, you make company training meetings even more productive.
Supernormal uses AI to capture and transcribe meetings. By removing the need to take notes, participants can be more engaged. After a training session, Supernormal will automatically generate action items and key takeaways. And Supernormal integrates with popular customer relationship management (CRM) platforms—making it easy to share sessions with colleagues.
Sign up today to see how Supernormal helps you run more effective meetings.