Web Training – 10 Crunch Questions To Ask So That You Are Not Ripped Off : We’ve all experienced it. You sign up for an internet or web program that includes training. The promotional material promises excellent instruction so that you get maximum value from the program. You expect the instruction to be as good as promised. You don’t ask any questions about it.
You invest. Then reality bites. The quality of the instruction is much less than promised. You seek support. It’s outsourced to someone who isn’t really interested. Maybe you’re referred to a “forum” of other investors not the web marketer. You gnash your teeth in frustration. You’ve been conned. And you’ve “done your dough cold”.
There is very little outstandingly good web instruction. What passes for “good instruction” online, would be considered poor instruction offline. Generally the quality ranges from average to dreadful. I’ve been involved in instruction and instructional design for over 30 years. These 10 questions will ensure you’re never ripped off again.
The 10 Questions
A. Training Objectives
1. What will I be able to do at the end of the training that I can’t do now?
2. What will I know at the end of the training that I don’t know now?
3. How will I know for sure that I can do and know what your training promises?
4. In specifying the training objectives will you guarantee only to use verbs that enable my performance to be measured and avoid waffly words like “appreciate”, “understand” and “experience” and imprecise phrases such as “gain insight”, “learn about”, “grasp the concepts”?
B. Training Progress
5. How will I know for sure that I’m progressing satisfactorily through your training and developing the essential skills and knowledge as I proceed?
6. What review and revision sections are included in the training so that you can tell “how well I’m going”?
7. If I need support and clarification during the training, do you provide it through your own resources or have you outsourced support to an external source?
C. Training Flexibility
8. Is your training designed so that I can enter and exit the training at points that meet my development needs rather than those dictated by your training design?
9. What pre training tests are included in your package to ensure that I’m not required to learn skills and knowledge that I can already display competence in?
D. Proof Of Training
10. You provide testimonials from A list bloggers or subject matter experts. What testimonials can you provide from acknowledged instructional design specialists testifying that your instructional design will meet the specified training objectives?
I call Questions 1, 2 and 3 the “essentials”. If a training provider isn’t prepared to provide measurable and definite training objectives and stand by them, find another provider.
These three questions dovetail with Question 4. Waffly words and phrases have no place in measurable training objectives. Phrases such as “In this training you’ll learn…” are flashing red lights warning you to keep away. If a training provider isn’t able to state “At the end of this training you will be able to…” They shouldn’t be asking for your money.
Questions 5, 6 and 7 concern your progress through the program. Fluttering a cursor across a screen like a drunken butterfly is poor training. The training design should include specific breaks and “homework” that you can submit so that both you and the training provider can check your progress and recommend action to get you “back on track” if necessary. External support resources rarely do this well.
Training should be designed so that you can enter the training process when it suits you, the trainee. Well designed and constructed training meets trainee needs. Trainees should be able to join and leave the training as it suits their needs, not locked into a process that puts the needs of the training provider as first priority.
In the same way, all sound training clearly specifies the level of prior knowledge and expertise necessary to enter and complete the training.
Proof Of Training
Web marketers seem to love to provide testimonials from A list bloggers and subject matter experts about how good their program is. The very least you should demand are testimonials from clients. These should provide very specific details of the benefits they derived in their businesses when they followed the training.
Ideally, providers should include testimonials from instructional designers and performance engineers stating that the instruction achieves the stated objectives. A list bloggers and experts are rarely A instructional designers. Forums with other investors are no substitute for the expert opinion of the web marketer. Quality of instruction and quality of instructional design are the real issues.
Should your training provider give positive and acceptable answers to these 10 Questions, consider these two matters.
- The Money Back Guarantee: The only guarantee carrying real worth is the unconditional lifetime money back guarantee. The 30, 60 or 90 day guarantee isn’t worth the paper it’s written on. Why should you pay your money, try the training, find it inadequate and ask for your money back? Why should you carry the risk? If the training provider really believes that the training is outstanding, the provider will stand by the training forever. And the provider won’t ask for full payment until you’re satisfied.
- The Value/Cost Match: Does the cost of the program match the claimed value? For example: you are not going to learn how to write an outstanding landing page for $47.00, regardless of what the marketer claims. You won’t learn all the “hidden secrets” of traffic generation and how to apply them for $67 either. Quality instruction that guarantees success or your money back with full support is expensive. Expect only “to get what you pay for”.
So that’s it. If your training provider is truly professional, they’ll have no trouble answering these 10 questions to your satisfaction. If they do have trouble… well, that’s another story. But don’t pay money to them.
Stop and think about it. What purchase or investment of any kind would you make without a definite, measurable, specific and ironclad guarantee that, following the professional instructions, you could make it work for you?
Web marketers should be held to the same level of accountability.
Leon Noone helps managers in small-medium business to improve on-job staff performance without training courses. His ideas are quite unconventional. Reading his free Special Report “49 Practical Tips for Removing Employee Apathy, Aggravation And Resistance In Your Business”. Simply visit http://managingemployeeperformance.com/ and download your free copy now.