Monday, 30 December 2013

Learning Styles Are Like Coffee

I drink my coffee black. It's what I prefer. But if I ran a coffee shop you'd also be able to get a latte, a cappuccino an espresso and more. Why? Because not everyone wants their coffee the same way as me.

Learning styles are like coffee. They come in different varieties. For example, you have visual learners who like to see and read, auditory learners who like to listen and speak, and kinaesthetic learners who like to be doing things. One problem many trainers have is that they deliver training based on their own preferred learning style. If we don't give learning styles a great deal of careful thought we are in danger of not meeting the needs of our learners who have a different learning style from ourselves.

One way to ensure this doesn't happen is to look at your training session from a learning styles perspective. Taking an holistic view of the session, and using the headings "Visual", "Auditory" and "Kinaesthetic", write down all the activities and learning methods you are using under the heading they will appeal to the most. 

Now look at the results. Have you got a reasonably even spread across all three learning styles? Or, are almost all your activities for visual learners? If so, how do you hope to engage auditory and kinaesthetic learners?

This is a great starting point for ensuring your training sessions appeal to everyone and don't just engage those whose learning style is the one preferred by you.

You can learn more about learning styles here. If you want to learn how to incorporate learning styles into your training sessions take a look at the Train the Trainer courses we offer. They are available as one day and two day courses and are delivered throughout the United Kingdom.

Visit the Gary Bedingfield Training website at

Monday, 23 December 2013

Successful PowerPoint Presentations

Death by PowerPoint is a slow, painful way to go, and we’ve all been a victim of it at some point. I certainly have, on far too many occasions!

Giving an interesting PowerPoint presentation, however, is surprisingly straightforward, so long as you follow a few basic guidelines. The problem with many presentations is that they can confuse your audience, stifling opportunities for discussion and boring them senseless. Definitely not the things you set out to achieve.

Firstly, let’s identify reasons for using PowerPoint: 

  • To take attention off you
  • You can email slides to those who can’t attend
  • To remind you what to say next
  • To maintain some sort of structure
  • To add a level of professionalism to your event
  • It can capture and enhance the attention and interest of your audience
  • It can help emphasise specific points
  • You can use images (even video) to better explain things

But let’s not forget about the disadvantages:

  • It can make you look amateurish if you’re unfamiliar with the required technology
  • It can be less effective if a lot of detail is required
  • It can distract from you if too much is happening on the presentation
  • A poor presentation can prohibit discussion
  • It can lead to you speaking to your PowerPoint, and not to your audience

Here are a few useful hints and delivery tips:

  • Use a wireless remote control to free yourself from the laptop
  • Don’t turn your back on the audience
  • Gesture towards the screen when you want to draw attention to it
  • Stand still when you want your audience to focus attention on screen
  • Move about to make your audience focus on you
  • Make your presentation interactive by including questions or exercises
  • Project your voice and show enthusiasm
  • Give your audience more attention than the screen
  • Know your subject
  • Be prepared for questions
  • Rehearse your presentation

For more advice on PowerPoint presentations, visit our website. We offer a Successful PowerPoint Presentations workshop that is available from as little as £350 per group.

Visit Gary Bedingfield Training website at

Saturday, 21 December 2013

Train the Trainer in Glasgow January 27, 2014

Train the Trainer Glasgow
"Brilliant! Very useful!" 
(FP, November 2013)

Gary Bedingfield Training are pleased to offer another chance to attend our one-day Train the Trainer course in central Glasgow. Although our Train the Trainer courses are usually delivered "in house", they are among the most popular in Scotland, in constant demand and this will be our third "open" course.

This special event is available to a very limited number of attendees on a first-come-first-served basis. Gary Bedingfield's Train the Trainer is an intensive course delivered over a single day; exploring areas such as learning styles, training resources, delivery styles, assessment and evaluation. 

As most people will tell you, entering a training room or delivering any kind of training for the first time can be a daunting and nerve-racking experience, and this course aims to make that experience as easy as possible, introducing you to the basics and helping you to quickly become effective and confident.

At the end of the course you will be able to:

  • Recognise the different learning styles
  • Plan and design training to gain commitment and enthusiasm
  • Run a training session and supervise training
  • Check that your training is effective and that learning has occurred

The sessions are as follows:

Session 1 How We Learn
Session 2 Delivering Training
Session 3 Running a Training Session
Session 4 Ending a Training Session
Session 5 Planning a Training Session

1 day (9:30am to 4:30pm)

Monday January 27, 2014

Central Glasgow

£175 per person (only 8 places remaining)

Who is the course for?
Our 1-day Train the Trainer Express course was created due to popular demand to meet the needs of staff who are training to be trainers but have limited time available.

Why should I attend?
As most people will tell you, delivering training for the first time can be a daunting and nerve-racking experience, and this course makes that experience as easy as possible, introducing you to the basics and helping you to quickly become effective and confident in the training room. What’s more, you’ll be hard pushed to find training of this quality at just £175...and we’re throwing in lunch, too!

What will I learn?
The course consists of five units covering learning styles, training plans, assessment, methods of delivery, running a training session, bringing your training to an end and making the most of evaluation.

Is the course accredited?
The course is not accredited but you will receive a Certificate of Attendance.

What organisations already use your training?
We currently deliver training to BP, CBRE, Menzies Aviation, Cardonald College, Routes to Work, Orchard Care Homes, Falkirk Council, West Dunbartonshire Council and Wirral Partnership Homes to name a few.

What does Gary Bedingfield know about training?
Gary Bedingfield is a fully qualified further education trainer and assessor with 15 years industry experience. He has worked throughout England and Scotland delivering to a wide variety of groups from dysfunctional teenagers to unemployed mature adults.

How much will it cost me?
At £175 you won't find better value training anywhere

How do I sign up?
If you’d like to book a place on this course then visit the web page listed below and complete the Training Enquiry Booking Form

Book your place now!

What sort of feedback have you been getting on these courses?
"A great course which has left me with the confidence to deliver training." 
(DS, September 2013)

"Very useful either as an intro or a summary for new trainers or existing trainers." 
(SH, September 2013)

"Very well done and put together. The training day was well laid out in a great venue." 
(AJ, September 2013)

"Very educational training session, delivered superbly." 
(FS, November 2013)

"Very good session. Fantastic plans to help progress within my company." 
(JK, November 2013)

"It was excellent. Gary engaged the group well and we all gained a lot." 
(KB, November 2013)

"Brilliant! Very useful!" 
(FP, November 2013)

"Excellent. Answered all my question and more. Exceeded my expectations." 
(MR, November 2013)

What if I have more questions?
We’re happy to answer any questions you have. You can email us at or call us on 0845 003 9571

Course fee includes all documentation, Certificate of Attendance, lunch, tea and coffee.

Visit Gary Bedingfield Training website at

Monday, 16 December 2013

Delivering Employability Skills

There seems to be plenty of employability skills training out there these days. Courses that offer tips on interviews and how to fill-in application forms, but is there any real structure to these courses that gives the attendees something to build upon?

I’ve been delivering employability skills for over 15 years and firmly believe the best way is to teach proactive job searching. But what, exactly, is proactive job searching?

Let’s consider the activities of a normal job seeker. They may check the local newspapers. Perhaps they search for online vacancies? To me, this is reactive job search and it’s what the majority of job seekers are doing these days – responding to companies who choose to advertise their vacancies in some way.

By being proactive, however, we are tapping in to the hidden job market – that enormous pool of jobs that never gets advertised. Being a proactive job seeker means speculatively contacting employees you’d like to work for and broadening your network of friends and family who know you are looking for work. It also means checking other parts of the local newspapers – not just the vacancies page. Is there an article about a new company opening a store near you? Has a local company just won a contract to produce a new product? Things like this are clear indicators that these companies are looking for more staff and provide the job seeker with the chance to approach the employer ahead of everyone else.

Being proactive is just one way of teaching employability skills. For more advice on delivering employability skills training, visit our website. We offer a Delivering Employability Skills workshop that is available from as little as £350 per group.

Visit Gary Bedingfield Training website at

Monday, 9 December 2013

Managing Groups

Does your job involve you having to manage groups? Effective group management can be a tricky task, especially when you have some powerful characters in the group.

But if that’s part of our job, then we need to be good at it. We should know how to choose appropriate content for our audience, work confidently in a variety of group situations and, perhaps, most importantly, effectively deal with challenging behaviour.

Another big issue we often face is delivering training to groups that are of mixed ability. How to you work with a group when some are beginners, some are at an intermediate level and others seem to be at an advanced level?

Firstly, don't ignore it and plough on regardless. Tell your group members that you realise there is a range of ability in the room and that you're going to try to give them all something of value.

Always keep an open mind - don't make assumptions about people's attitudes or skills, and mix up the group to allow more experienced people to work with the less experienced.

Prepare tasks at different levels and either allocate groups to tasks or allow them to select their own activity based on the ones they feel would be of most value to them.

For more advice on managing groups, visit our website. We offer a Managing Groups Effectively workshop that is available from as little as £300 per group.

Visit Gary Bedingfield Training website at

Monday, 2 December 2013

Time Management

What would our working days be like if we didn’t have time-management skills? Chaos? Confusion? Frustration? Probably.

But how much better would our working days be if we had even better time-management skills? Developing time-saving techniques and strategies enable us to be more productive, meet deadlines and achieve goals.

To achieve this we need to take control of our time, rather than allow it to control us, which, unfortunately, is often the case. We must learn to plan and prioritise our workload, deal with distractions and develop a proactive workstyle.

One simple trick we can all use is to complete a piece of work and then not return to it. If it’s done, it’s done. Many of us have a habit of going back to something and wasting valuable time tweaking it in such miniscule ways that it rarely makes a difference to the outcome. So, if that sounds like you, then try adopting a new rule. When it’s finished, walk away and leave it as finished.

For more advice on time management, visit our website. We offer a Time Management workshop that is available from as little as £300 per group.

Visit Gary Bedingfield Training website at