Langevin's Train-the-Trainer Blog

Lynne Koltookian

Lynne has been a course leader with Langevin since 2007. She completed her Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications from Penn State University and a Master’s degree in Education from Boston University. After working many years in human resources and sales, Lynne transitioned into training, her true passion, where she’s been facilitating since 1994. Her training philosophy is simple—learning should be fun! The essence of a good instructor is someone who can make complex things easy to understand and fun to learn. In her free time, you’ll find Lynne cycling, hiking, downhill skiing, and scuba diving.
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Recent Posts

5 Ways to Improve Your Vocal Skills for Presentations

Posted by Lynne Koltookian on 9/23/19 12:08 PM

Improve-Your-Vocal-Skills

Photo by: Irina Logra via Pixabay

Trainers need excellent vocal skills to engage their learners and keep them active in training. Strong vocal skills are important in many other situations as well, both professionally and personally (e.g. interviewing for a new job, going on a date with your special someone, delivering a presentation for your colleagues, etc.). In all these situations, it’s important to concentrate on what you are saying, as well as how you are saying it. Strong vocal communication skills are critical in training and in life, so it’s a good idea to know how to improve them.

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Topics: instructional techniques, presentation skills

Group Dynamics in the Virtual Classroom

Posted by Lynne Koltookian on 8/5/19 8:00 AM

Group-Dynamics-In-The-Virtual-Classroom

Photo by: StartupStockPhotos via Pixabay

I’ve been teaching in the virtual classroom for about two years now and teaching in the traditional classroom about twenty years. When designing and delivering training, you gain a solid understanding of human behavior, specifically group dynamics. In the traditional classroom, people progress through the four stages of group dynamics rather quickly. They start to form, storm, norm, and perform quite well provided the instructor has created a positive learning environment and conducted certain activities at the right times for the group. People also pass through the four stages of group formation in a virtual classroom. They may not be physically together in the same room but they are together as a group. The instructor needs to conduct introductions, icebreakers, and early participatory activities to facilitate the group bonding process in the virtual classroom.

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Topics: virtual classroom

How to Apply the Concepts Behind Common Training Buzzwords

Posted by Lynne Koltookian on 4/8/19 8:00 AM

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Photo by: Matthew_T_Rader via Unsplash

If you’re like me, perhaps your head is spinning with all the buzzwords that float around our training profession. But, don’t fret. To be an effective trainer for your learners and organization, the main thing is to understand and apply the concepts behind these buzzwords!

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Topics: gamification, microlearning

5 Ways to Make Learning Easier

Posted by Lynne Koltookian on 3/18/19 8:00 AM

How_To_Make_Learning_Easier

Photo by: Mastersenaiper via Pixabay

Have you ever applied for a home loan or refinanced your existing home loan? If you have, you know that it can be a long, tedious, and frustrating process. Often there’s too much time spent on the process, an abundance of paperwork to sign, too many fees, and there are too many people involved. By the end of the process, you may even wonder why you bothered in the first place. The process is much too cumbersome. This makes me wonder if anyone in the banking or mortgage business has asked the question, “How can we make this process easier for the customer?” If they did, maybe the entire process would be overhauled and simplified. Granted, they have many legalities that necessitate all the paperwork but, in my mind, everything can be simplified and improved if you put yourself in the shoes of the customer and streamline every step.

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Topics: adult learning principles, instructional techniques, instructor-led training, facilitation

Virtual Vs. Traditional Classroom Facilitation Part 2

Posted by Lynne Koltookian on 2/25/19 8:00 AM

Virtual_Versus_Traditional_Classroom_Facilitation_Part_2

Photo by: Seth Schwiet via Unsplash

There are many articles and blogs about how to handle difficult learners in the traditional classroom environment. In fact, I recently posted a blog related to this topic, comparing situations in a traditional classroom to those in a virtual classroom.

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Topics: virtual trainer, virtual classroom, instructor-led training

Virtual Vs. Traditional Classroom Facilitation Part 1

Posted by Lynne Koltookian on 2/18/19 8:00 AM

Virtual_Versus_Traditional_Classroom_Facilitation

Photo by: English via Pixabay

I deliver training in both virtual classrooms and traditional classrooms and have noticed many differences. Each learning environment creates its own unique behaviors among the participants.

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Topics: instructional techniques, virtual trainer, virtual classroom, facilitation

How to Choose the Correct Training Strategy

Posted by Lynne Koltookian on 11/19/18 8:00 AM

Choosing_The_Right_Training_Strategy

Photo by: Arek Socha via Pixabay

Do you remember the Indiana Jones movie, The Last Crusade? There’s a scene towards the end of the film where a knight tells one of the main characters to carefully choose a gold chalice from a collection of chalices. If the man chooses the right chalice, he’ll be granted eternal life when he drinks from it. If he chooses the wrong chalice, he dies! Luckily, our choices in the training profession are not life or death decisions. However, our decisions about choosing the right training strategy to fit our training needs can mean the difference between success and failure. If you are a training manager, this is important.

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Topics: managing training, training strategy

5 Ways to Get Learners More Involved in Your Training

Posted by Lynne Koltookian on 10/29/18 8:00 AM

Get_Learners_More_Involved_In_Your_Training

Photo by: Alexandr Pirogov via Pixabay

Every winter I do a lot of skiing with my ski club. We own a home in a resort community in Northern New Hampshire in the Mt. Washington Valley. As with many social or business clubs or organizations, it often seems like a small number of people do all the work when it comes to running the club. Perhaps you see this phenomenon happen in your training as well. Try as you might to get everyone to participate, a small number of learners likely do most of the work. You’ve seen them. They raise their hands to answer all your questions, they lead the small group activities, and they volunteer to scribe answers on flip charts and white boards. Instructors absolutely love these people! They take a lot of pressure off the instructor and keep the flow of the course moving.

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Topics: adult learning principles, making training fun

5 Reasons to Play Games in Training

Posted by Lynne Koltookian on 10/15/18 8:00 AM

Games_For_Training_Workshops

Photo by: Kevin Amrulloh via Pixabay

Help release the inner child in your participants by playing games in your training sessions. Sure, you’ve likely played Jeopardy and Who Wants to be a Millionaire in your training, but did you ever stop to think about all the benefits of playing those games? How often have you designed a workshop and thought about how to spice things up or add fun and high energy to the learning process? There are many ways to add fun and excitement to your training, but a sure-fire way to do it is to play a short game. Notice I said a short game? Like any activity, games in training should be fun but not too long. If a game goes on too long the learners become bored and will disengage.

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Topics: instructional design, games in training, gamification, making training fun

Who is Responsible for Ensuring Training Success?

Posted by Lynne Koltookian on 9/17/18 8:00 AM

Responsible_For_Ensuring_Training_Success

Photo by: Gerd Altmann via Pixabay

When I deliver Langevin workshops, I often share with clients that it takes a triple play at an organization to ensure training success. What do I mean by this? For training to be successful, every organization needs three groups of people working together to ensure positive results. The three groups responsible for ensuring training success are: managers, training professionals, and employees. Each one of these groups has specific responsibilities to ensure training works for everyone.

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Topics: managing training, make your training stick

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    Our very own master trainers share their experiences, tips, best practices, and expertise on virtual training, instructional design, needs analysis, e-learning, delivery, evaluation, presentation skills, facilitation, and much more!

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