4 Training Mistakes You Must Avoid

We all make mistakes. 

Even after all that preparation, time and effort, legal training doesn't always work as planned. 

That said, there are a few mistakes that are "training killers". These are mistakes that make employees check emails, look around the room or even...FALL ASLEEP!

Don't be that attorney.

Avoid these mistakes for an effective presentation:

1. The "kitchen sink" approach

Cramming everything there is to know about a legal concept into a presentation is a sure way to lose your audience.

Employees are receiving important information every single day of the week. Don't make them search for the relevant information on what they can give a foreign government official in a sea of anti-corruption / anti-bribery facts. 

Instead, take your time to effectively prepare for legal training by conducting a training needs analysis

This will help you determine what your employees "need to know" and what you can cut out. 

You'll be left with a short and effective legal training presentation.

Lesson: Don't put everything but the "kitchen sink" in your presentation.

2. Creating "generic" training for all employees, regardless of position and preference

It's very tempting isn't it?

Creating one master legal training presentation for all employees is just easier and less time consuming.

I get it. Developing these training presentations takes a ton of hard work. 

That said, it's important to resist that urge. Employees learn best when the training is specifically tailored to their positions and preferences. 

Think about it. 

Would your buy-side supply chain employees get a good understanding of contracts if you're using the recycled training materials you presented to the sales team last week?

Likely not. Employees gain a better understanding of commercial contracts if you train them to recognize specific risks. Those risks are different depending on what side of the transactions you're on. 

Lesson: Make training specifically tailored to departments or job functions.

3. Not testing new skills

Failing to put training into practice is a huge mistake.

Studies have shown that people are vastly more likely to recall information when they are forced to take an assessment. By failing to test employees on their newly acquired skills, you're actively sabotaging your own training. 

Additionally, testing employees shows them the real world benefits and applications of the training you provided (note: as long as you've created questions relevant to their positions). Employees who understand how the training will impact their specific job function will be more motivated to participate. 

How do you create effective training assessments? Check out our guide here.

If you're looking for a free resource to set up assessments for your employees, check out our article on Google Forms.

Lesson: Make assessments an integral part of your legal training.

4. Being "Ms./Mr. Serious"

I understand that antitrust law is not a "fun" or "funny" topic, but it's a mistake not to incorporate humor into your legal training.

Humor makes learning more pleasurable for employees and enhances attention in the classroom - 2 critical aspects to effective legal training. 

That said, not everyone is a stand-up comedian. So how do we incorporate humor into legal training?

E-Learning expert, Chris Pappas has a great article on how to incorporate into your training. He lists 5 critical tips to follow:

  • Research your audience to assess culture, experience, and personality. 
  • Don't let the humor overshadow the subject matter. 
  • Create entertaining stories and examples to highlight the subject matter. 
  • Keep the tone upbeat and motivational. 
  • Where you use humor is just important as how you use it. 

Lesson: Use humor to make more effective (and fun!) legal training.

Do you know of others? Let us know in the comments!