Whether things went well or if not so much, I find there is so much power in taking the time to properly reflect after presenting, training, or completing a project. It’s so easy to just cast aside each of these events upon completion. It’s done by saying things like,” well that went well”, “glad it’s over”,” that was rough but at least we got through it”, etc… It’s also done because of time, or a lack of! Time is always a nice reason to not fully do things, isn’t it?
So how does one properly reflect? I suppose it’s a matter of preference but I tend toward analytic methods. Starting with the biggest impression is a good spot. Let’s say you feel the training went well. I would ask the next question, “what went well, exactly”. “why do you say it went well”? These questions force you or your team to point out specific actions and examples to justify. The same is true of an opposite impression. You force the proper kind of reflection by asking questions that elicit specific actions and examples.
However, stopping at the questions is another pitful to properly reflecting. Go the next step. Record these things and then look at the evaluations to see if there are gaps between your impression and those of the learners. There is no better eye popping and forced reflection moment than when your impression does not match those of the learners. You may also end up questioning the effectiveness of your evaluation instrument too.
Lately, I’ve had plenty to reflect upon. Here are some things I’ve learned from some recent work:
- Not having an evaluation method leaves you knowing nothing or very little of how things went.
- A proper needs analysis can be invaluable. Learn how to do it right please!
- Getting input from a variety of sources helps build perspective, especially when you’ve lost it.
- Less is more. Always has been and i guess it always will be.
- Communicate, Communicate, Communicate!!!!!!! Ask yourself, “Did I ask?”, Did I share?”, “Did I show?”, or did I just do.