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Corporate Training Tips For Effective Positive Reinforcement

Written by Jody Raines | Sep 19, 2012 2:01:00 AM

Corporate Training Programs are initated to provide a learning experience for workforce changes. To assure adoption of new programs, using positive reinforcement can strengthen and encourage performance along the lines of the desired outcome.  Most individuals react to positive reinforcement during corporate training initiatives by contributing and being more receptive to the program.

Like any other training tool, the use of positive reinforcement is an extrinsic motivator that plays along a continuum assisting the learner in adopting more intrinsic goals consistent with the organizational change.

Training consultants are taught to recognize that there is value in learner's contributions, and finding something correct in answers can encourage the learners to take risks and participate. Most answers are not completely wrong in most instances.

Here are three corporate training tips for using positive reinforcement to have learners feel the power:

1. The power of words.  Using positive expressions, such as "yes", "good", "that's interesting", even, "close, that's an interesting suggestion" are all ways to encourage participation.  Answering in a group, even a group of peers, can be intimidating.  As the leader of the exercise, be consistent in noting participants and encouraging their enthusiasm.

2. The power of body language. Using your body to encourage participatants includes things like leaning forward and making eye contact, giving a thumbs up, smiling, nodding your head, and even giving the OK sign are all ways to signal that the learner is doing the right thing by participating.  Having a willing group of learners is contagious. 

3. The power of being right.  If exercises are too difficult, and activities are constructed to "catch" people, you are setting the learners up for failure.  Instead, set the participants up for success.  It's easier to get people to repeat and try new things if they feel that they understand the goals and they can correctly accomplish the task.  Dividing complex tasks into simpler components can effectively guide the users through the exercise.

Encouraging the right behaviors and keeping learners motivated are important to change initiatives. Are there other ways to positively reinforce associates that you have used?