7 Keys To Effective Online Training

Author: Brett Farmiloe

What's the key to hosting an effective online training session or workshop?

To help you find new and effective ways to host online training and workshops, we asked business leaders and HR experts this question for their best tips and tricks. From providing a sense of community to utilizing breakout sessions, there are several tips for hosting an effective online training session or workshop.

Here are seven tips for hosting an effective online training session or workshop: 

  • Engage Users
  • Provide A Sense Of Community
  • Ensure Audience Participation
  • Face To Face Interaction
  • Be Organized and Purposeful
  • Breakout Sessions and Takeaways
  • Use The Poll Feature On Zoom


Engage Users 

Whether the training or workshop is online or in-person, the key is having the right content and  providing an engaging learning experience. For example, many organizations have an online compliance training program to train employees and managers on important workplace topics, such as preventing discrimination and harassment and creating a more diverse and inclusive work culture. To be effective, the training content should be relevant to an organization’s workforce and industry, explore topics in creative ways, and use real-world examples and interactive exercises and challenges that raise awareness and promote positive behaviors and actions. 

Andrew Rawson, Traliant


Provide A Sense Of Community

The key to hosting an effective online training or workshop is providing a sense of community! Our online lash trainings are so fun because we try to inject the same energy and collaboration that they would experience in our offices. By going the extra mile to do so, I think it allows our clients to feel that they belong to a strong community of lash professionals.

Vanessa Molica, The Lash Professional


Ensure Audience Participation

Hosting online training has become much easier with the meeting technologies we have today. The new challenge is keeping your audience engaged and not just talking at them during the training. The best way to do this is with group discussions, question polls, and creating sub-groups to allow them to work together in teams. These are normal events when training happens in person so you need to duplicate these in an online format to ensure your audience learns from the training and actively participates.

Mark Smith, University of Advancing Technology


Face-To-Face Interaction

In order to effectively onboard and train individuals via a digital platform, it is important to incorporate as much face-to-face interaction as possible. It is so easy to tune out while watching hours of videos, so you need to break up training sessions with interactive Q&As or job shadowing. This will also give the trainee the opportunity to interact with your team and build a better relationship with them.

Nikitha Lokareddy, Markitors


Be Organized And Purposeful

I think it is safe to say that 2020 has created a phobia, allergic reaction, or downright contempt for online training. I hope to never utter the words "you’re on mute" ever again. However, I feel that Zoom, Microsoft Teams, Google Meets will be with us for a long time. So, with that being said, how can you make your online training outstanding? First and foremost let your audience know when your training will be. People are busy and they forget (sometimes on purpose). Prior to the training, remind your audience. Next, create an agenda and have it sent to your audience. People want to know what they will learn. Start your meeting on time. People's time is precious, do not waste it. Let your audience know who will be giving the training, if you have a short bio provide it, verbally or in the chat. Next, make it impactful and draw the connection between what you are teaching to the audience. Lastly, explain the why. Your audience should always know why this is important.

Bobby Zavala, University of Dubuque LIFE Tempe AZ


Breakout Sessions and Takeaways

If you're planning a training session or a workshop, make sure you work in 3 things: 1. Crowd participation - ideas, comments either in the chat or live 2. Time to apply the information - breakouts sessions are key to making information 'sticky' 3. Lessons Learned - what are the take-aways from the session and how will the participants use the information in their daily lives?

Tracy Bullock, Bullock Training & Development


Use The Poll Feature On Zoom

Spending the extra time to make your training session or workshop engaging is worth every minute. Don’t talk at your participants, include them and keep their brains awake. Using the poll feature on Zoom or a website like Menti lets your audience participate. You can even quiz your audience on Kahoots, at the end of your session, to help drive home your main points. If you have multiple presenters, keep their sessions short and to the point.

Roxy Helman, UDA


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