“That won’t work” is the first sentence I often hear when a colleague feels forced to move his coachings into the net. Why? The typical answers: “I miss the personal interaction. “On the screen I can’t feel the atmosphere in the workshop.” “The participants can’t concentrate for long.” “My topics only work in classroom training.”

That doesn’t work anyway?

I always remember the story of a colleague who spent many sleepless nights before his first digital training. In his life before Corona, he was a well-booked, competent, funny and likeable trainer. Great technical competence is not one of his many strengths, which is why online training was completely foreign to him. We agreed to set up his first digital training together.

No cutbacks in content

Already during the planning phase we noticed that the cooperation was fruitful. We both gained new impulses for our work. The fear that content would have to be deleted or changed was quickly dispelled. We were able to translate everything that the colleague usually teaches in classroom training into the digital training world. The units became smaller, we agreed on suitable tools and on more time for interaction.

Like a fish in water

On the day of the workshop, I started with a technical onboarding, in which I playfully familiarized the participants with the necessary tools. Then the colleague took over while I took care of the technology. If the main coach had initially sensed some tension, it disappeared within a few minutes. You could see that he was in his element, completely absorbed in his training and played his strengths with confidence – even online.

Concentrated, committed, focused

The participants? Worked with concentration. Passed on digital Post-its. Exchanged in small groups. Created a joint work in the plenum. Stayed focused the whole time. In the background, I made sure that the schedule was kept to and sent the participants to the various breakout rooms. I conducted intermediate evaluations and helped when the technique was not working.

That’s it!

At the final feedback session, the prevailing mood was enthusiasm. But also astonishment that everything had gone so smoothly and relief because the trainer and participants had successfully broken new ground.

To be continued …

My colleague told me afterwards – during the joint after-work beer in front of the screen – that the participants were even more concentrated than during the on-site training. He also found it very positive that he was able to concentrate on the training and that I had relieved him of all organizational necessities. His conclusion: “It was fun. We will continue to do so in the future. The sleepless nights were not necessary.”

My advice to trainers: Stay who you are, concentrate on your strengths and look for a partner who can take over the technical and organizational aspects. What are your experiences?