Whenever I’m training people in presentation skills or the Certificate IV in training and assessment, I often make reference to something called 70/30. I made up the name myself but the concept itself is very well known in training circles.

It refers to the percentage of time that a facilitator aims to have their course participants actively involved in the course content – 70%. The remaining 30% is for the facilitator to present course content, usually technical information that needs to be imparted by a subject matter expert. Quite often, during the 30% facilitator-centered part of the training session, presentation software like PowerPoint or Prezi is used, usually pretty badly. That’s just one of the reasons why we try to limit the time where the facilitator holds centre stage in the training room. But that’s the topic of my next blog.

How do I incorporate 70/30 into my training sessions?

You’re probably doing it already but you call it something else. The very simple trick is to vary your delivery strategies so that they focus mainly on your course participants. You want them to be actively involved in their own learning and not just sitting there passively as you flip through your no doubt beautifully crafted PowerPoint slides.

Which delivery strategies allow you to do this?

  • Question and answer
  • Brainstorming
  • Group work
  • Demonstrations
  • Case studies
  • Role-plays
  • Games

are a few examples. Each strategy has its own pros and cons and you need to vary your use of them.

One last thing to remember is that by using these strategies you give up control of your class to some extent. But that should be a positive thing  – adult learners usually respond well when they have a say in how they learn.