What’s your experience of training materials from a training session/course? Was it a copy of the PowerPoint slides, was it a series of screenshots, what about those handouts that have gaps in sentences for you to complete as you go through the training – people respond differently to the various types of handouts/materials and you will never suit everyone but getting the optimum handout should be your aim when delivering a course. That’s because the information is left with the attendee and their memories will start with that when they refer back to them – if in fact they can.

When developing your training materials/handouts do consider the following areas:

White space: ensure there is lots of white space to enable additional notes to be made and for ease of reading. Too much text in one block is difficult to read and not very tempting either.

Size and style of font: if the print is too small it will be difficult for people to engage with it (14pt is a good size), use of Capitals should be limited as these are difficult to read too. Serif fonts (those with tails such as Times New Roman) are harder to read than Sans Serif (such as Arial).

Images: breaking up the writing with images is a good decision as we all know a picture paints a thousand words and it will also help the attendee to link the learning which helps with recall and retention of information.

Indexing: it is a good idea to number the pages, use a contents page and other referencing methods to aid searching and using the document after the event. Headers and Footers also give you great space to have the subject, author, contact information displayed on every page. It is good to put the date or version number too for when re-prints/updates are produced.

Further learning/links: an opportunity for further sales/interest is to include further learning or links to websites/books at the end of the materials – or a Call to Action. They may even give the materials to a third person.

Your materials are marketing literature and should be used in that way – ensure your logo’s are displayed as well as company information – as well as your branding used throughout.

Do let me know what your tip would be for great training/learning materials so we can all continue with best practice.

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