Today’s Sage 200 training session was actually really inspirational for me. I was working with a company within the Marine sector, fast growing and full of vibrant interesting people (my kinda customers) and the best bit about today was the smile.
For me its always incredibly important to get that smile. For those of you teachers, trainers and parents you know the one I mean. The one that means they get it. That smile that your child or children get when they suddenly click onto what you are saying. The smile of realisation and that “omg they arent talking a foreign language” moment that for me, absolutely makes my day. And the harder I have to work to get it, the more satisfied I feel when I do get it because like most of the team here, I love a challenge.
So how do I get it?
Most people think that software training is about watching someone move a mouse about a screen. If its good, its not. It should be interactive in some shape or form. That could be:
– Asking questions, and occasionally putting people on the spot
– Asking them to teach someone else how to do a task
– Working through exercises
– Asking them to talk you through how this could apply to them and their processes
– Quizzes (Chris one of our other trainers just loves quizzes!)
And if you have any more ideas – please comment below – I would love to hear them!
When people are learning Sage 200 and project accounting in particular, it can be incredibly hard to visualise how it actually works. All the conceptual/project structure stuff can be overwhelming for the poor person that just wants to enter some timesheets. So my advice, do what I do, start small and use actual examples that they can relate to. When people are learning, it is often a lot easier to learn a lot about that you know a little, rather than a little about something which you don’t know anything. Haha – now thats a sentence!
An example of how we do this with our bespoke Sage 200 Training online:
Projects is a really bespoke module – in fact its one of the few modules that we dont have a standard online course for (yet). Because each company has such a different way of using the software this is where working with your own data becomes incredibly important. That is why we always build a bespoke VM environment with the company’s own data which we then replicate for each attendee. We then use that data to build exercises and examples that we then run through with each attendee. From a learning perspective we have found that this increases absorption and retention of information. Because the attendee knows their own data, they have a point of origin of which to relate the training. We will actually go to the level of getting them to enter a real timesheet, real purchase order and set up a real project during the training.
There is a really interesting article on connections in the brain. It states that “adding new information opens up memories associated with the task. Once those memory neurons are active, they can form new connections, explains Bergstrom. They also can form stronger connections within an existing network. Over time, your level of understanding increases until you suddenly “get” it.”. So by working with a dataset you already know you already have the memories associated, so you find it easier to form new connections i.e. learn new tasks within Sage 200.
Not only that but the study also shows that cramming is not effective way to learn. It may get you through a test but it is not the way to achieve long term retention of the information. You know how you leave a course feeling motivated, inspired and excited to start using the software (and if you dont you are going to the wrong courses…) only to get back to work the next day and realise you have forgotten 75% of what you learnt? Thats why we dont do full day training courses. Because our courses are online, they can be split over two half days with a week in between to allow our attendees to practice and consolidate their knowledge before the next one. Also for those of you who have been on one of our courses, sleep is the best aid for learning (not red bull!). Always get a good nights sleep after doing a course, thats when your brain processes everything you have learnt that day.
Interesting huh! Just another day in the life of an itas solution consultant 😉