What’s the old proverb? “Necessity is the mother of invention”

Well, if my online negotiation training is anything to go by, that is absolutely the case.

When the Covid-19 lockdown was introduced in March 2020 I was faced with having to quickly flex my business to reflect the new ‘working from home’ arrangement. This meant having no genuine alternative other than to venture online and into the world of virtual learning…something I’d largely been able to avoid previously.

What was putting me off before? Two things really. Firstly, technology fears and secondly facilitation concerns.

On the tech issue it was…’what do I press here? What happens if I mess up? How do I screenshare and manage breakout rooms?…..Lots of stressing about things that in the face to face classroom I’d do seamlessly.

On my concern about facilitation style I was hung up on thinking ‘How can I make my sessions as dynamic and as interactive from a computer screen?’ I was tying myself in knots about the format hampering my ‘learning by doing’ approach.

Well…two months in..and having now run several online negotiation courses…what on earth was I worried about?

Yes a few technical glitches still happen- but hey, so what? I mess up in the classroom from time to time -maybe forgetting a particular flow of a session- and then just carry on where I left off. Lo and behold, online I can do the same. Keep calm and carry on!

When it comes to ‘learning by doing’ I’ve been amazed how my groups have got to grips with breakout rooms, white boards, chat boxes and polls. Yes the approach has had to be adapted ,and sessions made shorter to aid concentration levels, but they are still as interactive and participative as before. Phew!

Feedback has been tremendous…

” I thought the different ways of interacting via Zoom were good e.g. breakout rooms, annotated white boards etc much more interactive than I expected for a virtual session”

 “The short gap between sessions helped in terms of applying what we learnt and having an opportunity to review”

“Really engaging. I enjoyed using Zoom to help make it seem like we weren’t all miles apart”

“I really liked the interactive nature of the training”

Why did I wait so long to add online negotiation training to sit alongside my face-to-face classroom training?