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The secret sauce to training success using the ENGAGE model

Vicky Halsey is an inspirational speaker, author and trainer. She found that instructional designers tend to spend 70% of their time on WHAT they are going to teach, and only 30% of their time on HOW, when the ratios should be altogether reversed.

Her signature ENGAGE model is a great starting point for any learning initiative. This model can act as a very good blueprint for developing quality content that will make a difference for the modern learner.


  1. Energize learners

    It's crucial to stir up interest by shedding some light on the topic, even before the training session takes place. At the start of the course, whether it is a classroom course or an e-learning module it is best to get the participants involved as soon as they walk in or click 'start'.


  2. Navigate content

    All participants should feel as if the course was designed to include them. Incorporate as many varied activities and presentations as possible while also keeping a focus on repetition. Make it easy for everybody to follow the training materials and feel at ease in their learning experience.


  3. Generate meaning

    Content needs to be closely intertwined with meaning and trainees must see the relevance of a subject and hopefully have enough 'aha' moments to drive them into action. If you manage to show just how and why it can make a difference in the their lives it's an easy ride from there.


  4. Apply to the real world

    Making the shift from learning to doing is not easy. With modern L&D technology you can replicate actual situations and environments so that trainees can truly test the newly acquired information without fear of failure and with the constant possibility of a do-over.


  5. Gauge and celebrate

    It is very important that people can assess how much they have learned. Celebrating achievement is necessary in order to activate that positive emotional response to learning. This final step of the actual learning intervention should be designed to be as interactive as possible.


  6. Extend learning to action

    You should put in place some strategies that will drive employees to put learning into practice: email reminders, follow-up workshops and so on. Setting up virtual spaces where people can share experience and ask for help is also a good way of extending learning into action.


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