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Employee Engagement

Tales from the operating room:  Train them like brain surgeons

A quick story:  Back in the day, I trotted off to my local university with dreams of becoming America’s next great medical doctor.  With transcript in hand, SAT scores in my hip pocket, and a plan to graduate early so I could enter medical school, I eagerly dived into my classes.  On the weekends, I worked at a local hospital and watched future doctors be trained.

Fast forward to today:  I am not a doctor.  I discovered in undergrad school that three things kept me from reaching my goal; Biology, Chemistry and Physics.  Also, blood was involved which is not my strong suit.  So before being asked to leave school, I announced to the world that I was changing my plan and becoming the next-best thing to a brain surgeon… and that was life as a corporate learning guru… which was a step up if you ask me.

But, here’s the thing.  I did learn something in the hospital about employee engagement.  A surefire way to get student/employee engagement is to have them teach the class or at least part of it.  The medical community calls this ‘See, Do, Teach.  It’s the way doctors become doctors.  They watch the procedure, then do the procedure, then teach the procedure to the next student or group.  The medical community knows that you-don’t-know-it-until-you-can-teach-it.  And you should steal this idea.

So, what’s the application?  If you want your employees to give their undivided attention and ask a bazillion questions, let them know in advance they will be teaching part of the class tomorrow….on their feet…in front of the room. Nothing drives engagement like the fear of embarrassing yourself in front of your peers!  Picture a 3-day workshop.  Before class begins, give each employee a teaching assignment for the next day around today’s lessons.  That will engage them like nobody’s business!

Ask your doctor.

Jim Blaylock, Sales Coach

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