We use a huge element of accelerated learning in our training programmes, often employing video cameras so people can see themselves and others, picking out the best bits and losing the worst.
We never keep the videos we shoot; it’s one of the things we promise delegates: the videos are only used on the training course and then they are deleted, without even showing the boss…
…which, to a certain extent is a shame, because some of them are very funny, mostly unintentionally.
Of course, I’m far too professional to ever talk about any of these events so, naturally, I thought I’d share a couple with you now.
There was the time we were doing some sales training for a bank and the sales people had only a few seconds to engage customers whilst they were in the banking hall. There were the immortal words of one, very enthusiastic, lady, who berated our actor with: ‘come on, you know you want one. It’s a pound, just a pound, a pound, that’s all, just a pound, come on, a pound…’ and on it went.
The funny bit was when the actor turned to Renee, who was filming, and mouthed the word ‘Help!’ to the camera, to which Renee mouthed back: ‘No!’
But my own personal favourite is this:
We were working with a gardening franchise about 10 years ago. The sales person was a young guy, naïve to the ways of the world, and his customer was a slightly older lady, probably about 50 or so.
The lawn had been measured, the borders investigated; there was just one thing left to do.
The franchisee looked down to the hedge at the bottom of the garden and then looked at his customer and said, with a completely straight face: ‘Your bush looks a bit ropey. Do you want me to trim that for you?’
Pandemonium in the training room!
And fair play to the older lady, too. She looked back at the young man with a face just as straight as his and said: ‘No thanks. My husband does that for me!’
I swear to you that, to this day the guy doesn’t know what we were laughing at. The (not so young anymore) man still rings me occasionally, 10 years later, and he always asks why I snigger every time he calls.
But I’m far too professional to tell anyone any of this.