The fourth and last category to consider when co-training is how to stay on task and on time.
- Review the lesson plan, so that you know how much time is allotted to each section and all of the relevant content materials to be used;
- Respect the importance of the need for breaks;
- Follow the agenda and the lesson plan;
- Synchronize your watches;
- Watch the time and pace yourself; and
- Agree on a signal to discreetly let each other know when it’s time to bring a presentation to a close.
- Underestimate the amount of time group participation involves;
- Ignore scheduled starting and ending times;
- Go past your allotted time;
- Assume that taking “a few more minutes” to finish your
The third category to consider when co-training is to decide how differences of opinion between the trainers will be handled.
Treat each other with professional respect. Possible options include any combination of the following:
- Write down disagreements for later mutual discussion;
- Wait until the end of the day, when you debrief the entire session together;
- Defer to the other trainer;
- Let the issue drop, if it’s not very important;
- Bring the matter to the other members if there is a core training group, for resolution and consistency in future presentations;
- Agree to disagree; and/or
- If the issue is significant, discuss it with the other trainer during a break to see if s/he agrees that one of you should make
The second category to consider when co-training is to decide what the role of the non-presenter will be while the other trainer is presenting a section.
Be clear about the expected role of the non-presenter. Possible options include any combination of the following:
- Write group comments on the flip chart or overhead;
- Work with one section of the group;
- Note down questions or issues raised by the group that will need to be addressed;
- Provide assistance as requested by the presenter;
- Observe the group interactions;
- Help to provide crowd control;
- Serve as a time keeper;
- Facilitate small group discussions;
- Check to see if any participants need extra assistance; and/or
- Interact with the presenter in a pre-arranged manner- for
Since the do’s and don’ts really come paired under key categories, we will look at them together. The first key category has to do with deciding who will present each training section.
Jointly determine who is responsible for each section.
It is entirely up to each teaching team to decide how to split the training responsibilities. It depends on your comfort level with the content, the methodology, and each other.
Possible options include any combination of the following:
- Play to each other’s strengths;
- Alternate every other section;
- Alternate every two sections;
- Alternate sessions; and/or
- Co-train all or certain sections
- Compete with each other;
- Try to create a lead/assistant hierarchy;
- Correct each other in front of the participants;
A co-training experience can be very rewarding. We don’t often get a chance to work closely with our peers and see how they approach training. It can be a wonderful source of energy and support- if you plan for it.
However, if you are used to presenting training by yourself, the assumption of “co-presenter” status can be very rocky. It is not easy to give up authority and control in the classroom to another trainer.
It helps to prepare yourself to assume this possibly new and unfamiliar training role if you:
- anticipate what it will feel like to co-present;
- identify possible areas of friction (in terms of philosophy, background, personality, or training style); and
- agree to specific ground rules to