There are a few things that we will plan to do differently. It’s tough to say since the feedback was positive, yet the participants were of two skills sets. (Compare the three comments.)
I’ve had a few days to reflect on last Thursday’s GLI and the discussion that GCTs Erica Hartman, Kern Kelley, Jesse Spevack and I had afterward. I also read the evaluations several times and look forward to speaking with Mark Wagner about moving forward with a possible third GLI this summer. I’ve spent the weekend thinking about the 110% effort I give towards my preparation for a professional development event and that I expect when I go to experience someone else’s presentation I have rather high expectations.
Here’s some PD thoughts I’d like to share:
- Describe your event accurately and stick to the description.
- Make sure when you prepare for PD that you have materials that accommodate every level of user. Have some step-by-step literature available as well as resources for delving deeper into the topic.
- Prepare for every type of learner. Try to provide printed materials, digital copies of those materials, video tutorial links and additional reading resources as well as any other relevant data you can provide.
- It’s always better to have too much prepared than too little.
- Make sure you come with a feeling of flexibility so that when technical issues arise, you can go to plan B. (Let’s face it: Have a Plan C and D as well.)
- Make sure you take an extra dose of patience with your morning coffee so that you don’t get frustrated with the attendees. They haven’t seen the presentation ten times like you have. They may need more time than you planned.
- You may think you are the expert in the room, but always plan that there is someone in the room who knows more than you do. Invite that person to contribute to the presentation. (This will work out nicely for you should you come across something you don’t know or that has changed since the last time you saw it ie. an updated version of software.)
- Thank everyone for attending your session / workshop and give them your contact information. The PD doesn’t have to end when the timer rings. Encourage your attendees to take a look at your social bookmarks, subscribe to your blog or follow you on Twitter. Go ahead, give them your e-mail. What’s the worst thing that could happen?
I really do read the comments that people leave on evaluations. I try to adjust and improve my work based on those comments. Please leave a comment if I’ve left something off this list – we’d only benefit from it. Thanks!