A reader writes: “I note that you like to give tests in your workshops and disagree with that approach. I believe that a good trainer does not need to embarrass their students by testing them and possibly putting them in such a stressful environment.”

First of all, thank you for your candor. I noted some of your feedback during the session and appreciate your clarification of my initial assumptions. The class in question has a required testing element for a person to receive their certification. I agree with this requirement since it helps many applicants to focus on the material and demonstrate their mastery of the subject. My challenge is to not only help the student pass the test but also get some practical application from my examples and exercises. I remember one student a few years ago who scored very high on the written exam but still did not have a clue as to how to apply the principles at her contracts. I believe, that over time, she will relate the “book learning” to her real world experiences and come out quite well.

I do not look at testing as a win/lose proposition; rather there is something for all of us to learn from the experience. I never intentionally embarrass a student in my class and do my best to use their mistakes and errors to reemphasize the correct information in a kindly way. If they already knew all the information, why are they attending the class? Also, please understand that I look at testing as a way of evaluating my own training abilities and take the challenge of covering the material thoroughly as very important. If I do my job as best I can and the students are motivated to learn, we have a win/win outcome.

As I stated to the class you attended: “If there is no change in attitude (knowledge) and action (utilizing that knowledge), I have failed the student but also the student has failed to be engaged as well. It is a two way street. Your comments and questions are important. I hope to hear from you soon. Until then, keep it clean...

Mickey Crowe has been involved in the industry for over 35 years. He is a trainer, speaker and consultant. You can reach Mickey at 678-314-2171 or CTCG50@comcast.net.