Resources for Trainers, Train the trainer opportunities

Tenets from Tennant


I’m guessing many of you have already seen this, but just in case you haven’t, Roy Tennant’s chapter in Technology in Libraries: Essays in Honor of Anne Grodzins Lipow is lovely. In addition to editing the entire book, Tennant wrote this chapter titled, “Talking Tech: Explaining Technical Topics to a Non-Technical Audience.” Here’s a list of the training tips he includes:

  1. Know your audience.
  2. Select the appropriate scope.
  3. Summarize
  4. Cultivate the right attitude
  5. Admit your ignorance
  6. Deliver in multiple modes
  7. Repeat
  8. Make accommodations
  9. Provide opportunities to participate
  10. Roll with the punches
  11. Ask for questions like you really mean it
  12. Be enthusiastic
  13. Be authentic
  14. Have fun!

I think it’s a good list to read when planning training and just before delivering training, too. I also think it could be useful if you have the opportunity to co-train with someone else. Talk to each other about the list and get input re: your strengths and re: areas for growth, too.

4 thoughts on “Tenets from Tennant”

  1. Thank you for noticing. I learned these things both at the feet of the master (my mentor, Anne Lipow) but also through sheer experience. I taught many workshops before beginning to do keynotes, and I can tell you that these “tenets” have stood me in good stead in both venues.

  2. Sarah – EXACTLY! It’s perfect! I’m sharing it w/Ross 🙂

    Roy – Thank YOU… for the essay and for stopping by my blog!

  3. Thanks Brenda for sharing this. Diana used the points today during our training with the Perry-Lecompton library staff on Koha. I will definitely be making use of those points in coming presentations!

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