8 Interactive Training Ideas to Change Up Your Lunch and Learn Routine
- Sarah Gurr
- 3 Min Read
Hosting lunch and learns is an effective method of training engagement. However, if you feel you’re constantly taking over your company’s lunches, try other interactive training ideas to change up your routine without sacrificing attendance or effectiveness.
Leverage Your Team’s Knowledge
Each of your employees and teams has a specialized skill set unique to their positions. So, why not harness that knowledge for an interactive training?
1. Start a mentor program
Put training in your staff’s hands. Give mentors throughout your organization techniques for training others. Then empower them to teach others with a mentorship program. Create regular check-in points for mentors and mentees to validate progression and areas to improve.
2. Cross train between departments
Have one department with a skill set another team needs? Try cross training. Let a team spokesperson or a few members of the team put together a presentation for the other team, or try shadowing. Employees may feel more comfortable raising questions to their peers, leading to healthy discussion.
Change the Scenery
Does the room you hold training in lull people to sleep with its windowless walls and warm temperatures? Step outside!
1. Take Your Team Off-Site
Use a change of scenery to increase engagement. Rent a loft in the area, a conference room at a local hotel, or a room in a restaurant. Or try an Airbnb. Moving employees out of their usual environment adds importance and excitement to the training.
2. Learn on Your Own Time
Try an e-learning course employees can complete on their own time. While you will need to set aside time to create the curriculum or vet the course, team members can find times that work for them to complete training.
Don’t Just Stand There
Appeal to different learning styles and keep your team engaged by stepping away from presentations. Try interactive training ideas and games like these:
1. Swap Stories
Training your team to handle a scenario they may have encountered before? Ask employees to prepare an example of an experience or scenario that fits the training. Then discuss how to handle or solve it as a group. Prepare a few case studies yourself to kick start the discussion.
2. Stop Talking to Increase Participation
Help your team internalize the material by prompting discussion. Try these three interactive training ideas to get your team talking and moving:
- After presenting a quick lesson, use a whiteboard or easel to guide a discussion. Or let team members write their questions or ideas on sticky notes and place them on a wall before grouping them into themes to review.
- Have the group practice what they’ve learned by breaking them into pairs to role-play. Assign each team member a role that gets them thinking and out of their chair.
- Put a scenario up on a screen or whiteboard. Break the team into two groups and have each group discuss what’s right, or wrong, with the scenario. Then, bring the two groups back together to review their findings and the correct answer.
Cater a Different Meal
Lunch and learns are tried-and-true for a reason. To add variety to your training schedule, try catering a meal outside of lunch. Your employees do eat at other times too.
1. Bring in Breakfast
Some team members are at their best in the morning. Catering a breakfast training session gives these employees a chance to learn while they’re most productive. So, shake things up with donuts, bagels and fruit, or a breakfast buffet to kick start the day. Just don’t forget the coffee, and give everyone a few minutes to settle in and wake up before jumping into your material.
2. Add an Afternoon Treat
Keep your team going with an afternoon reward like smoothies or cookies. Employees will have had a chance to power through their to-do list and may welcome the break in their day. Pair your catered treat with activities that will get everyone moving for an effective and engaged training.
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