The virtual Dignity at Work training experience
Nelson Training has been experimenting with Dignity at Work training sessions using Mentimeter and Zoom during the lock-down. As a training company that uses interactive drama, we needed to find a way of continuing to deliver sessions while face to face training was impossible.
A major turn off with Webinar based learning is the lack of interactivity. One of the benefits of using a meeting type format such as Zoom or Teams is that it is a two way process. Both Trainer and delegates can talk to each other, just like in face to face training. Another benefit is that many people have become familiar with Zoom during the lock-down as a means of keeping in touch with friends and family.
Drama-based training and activities over Zoom or Teams
In normal times, as a drama-based training company, we would use professional actors to create scenes relevant to the subject. Following delegates seeing the sketch, they would interact with the actors to improve the situation. In order to replicate this using Zoom or Teams we pre-recorded the sketches on video. Following the video, the actors would then appear, in role, at the Zoom meeting.
We were able to overcome social distancing in making the videos by using green screening and placing relevant backgrounds after.
We have been using Mentimeter (mentimeter.com ) for a few years now in face to face training and found it to be the most effective internet based presentation system. Here we have used it to get real-time input from delegates with live polls, quizzes, word clouds and Q&As using the screen sharing features of Zoom.
Dignity at work training lends itself to the virtual format
We have used Dignity at Work as our overarching title for bullying and harassment training. We offer programmes for both the management of this for managers and what to do if you are a victim of bullying and harassment for staff. It is a subject that lends itself to interactive drama based training. Delegates can see realistic situations and explore fruitful outcomes.
We have found the reaction of delegates to be very interesting. In feedback, some delegates reported finding it easier to interact with the actors than in face-to-face training. Virtually all found it preferable to PowerPoint or webinar format training over Zoom or Teams and some felt it better than face-to-face training. We found the use of Mentimeter rather than PowerPoint was particularly popular as everyone was able to interact with the information in real time.
In conclusion, we have found that whilst we might be missing face-to-face training, the use of Zoom or Teams meeting combined with Mentimeter is as good a substitute as you can get whilst social distancing makes this nearly impossible.