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Managing students that don’t progress

As a trainer/assessor you have a variety of stakeholders to keep happy.  Training is a business like others and like any other business it is based on progression and outcomes.  It can also be linked to funding in so far as a lot of time can go into a student or trainee but until they satisfactorily complete there is no payment for services – that is something I think is fundamentally flawed in the model but that is a blog for another topic.

Trainers and assessors need to be able to show stakeholders who can consist of employers, training co-ordinators and students/trainees themselves that support, accountability and support has been put in place and acted upon.  Many students/trainees will often turn around and say that they didn’t feel they were supported.  Contemporaneous file notes and transparent communication can manage that.

Below are a few of the things that can be done to manage this.

  • Agree on the training plan, not just on paper but have a discussion with all parties and then follow that up with email and including all stakeholders.
  • Set auto-emails to send participants reminders about their obligations and include everyone in that (extrinsic motivation).
  • Record all follow up phone calls, text messages (and take photos of text messages for their record).
  • Use an app like Life360 – it records your location and for what time you were in that location. Participants who say, the trainer was only here for 10 mins can then be showed the real time that you were there.  Take a photo of that after the meeting and add it to the students record.

When a participant says they don’t feel supported, clarify what support it is they believe they want.  I have asked that questions to participants and this is usually after support has been put in place and their response is often, “I don’t know”.  What they may be saying here is that they simply have not progressed and they don’t want to take responsibility for it.

Ask questions and have a workplace supervisor there that can clarify how much support and time is available to the trainee in the workplace.

It can be that they want a trainer/assessor to sit with them whilst they complete assessments.  If there is the option to do so a trainer/assessor may choose that but often it is not a financially viable option.  Nor should we remove accountability and self-management from the trainee.

Trainers/Assessors need to hold students/trainees to be accountable and document their support, communication and contact.  And then students/trainees will have to take responsibility for their outcomes.

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