We're sharing some feedback, scores and suggestions — gathered from participants in the many training workshops delivered in the last three months of 2019.
In the last quarter of the decade, hundreds of people from teams across the private and public sector took part in our bite-sized training workshops: from government departments to tech companies, creative agencies to community organisations. Sessions were either delivered to cross-organisational groups in our open programme, or taken directly into teams by our team of facilitators — and were always focussed on topics specific to team goals and commercial challenges. Gathering feedback after every session helps us continually evolve and enhance their impact, and here we report back on an overview of what we've most recently learned. Overall hugely positive, and thanks to everyone who participated and then generously shared their feedback.
• Feedback is gathered from a sample of 50 sessions delivered between October and December 2020.
• Sessions were a mix of those accessed by cross-organisational groups, and those delivered directly into teams (either as standalone sessions or ongoing programmes).
• The number of participants per session ranges from 8 to 18.
• Organisations new into our services in the final quarter of 2019 include Trainline.com, the HudsonBec group, Citi, PwC, Refinery 29, What3Words and Frieze.
What we learned..
When asked: "What do you feel was good about the session?"
"The workshop was really practical and we got to try out everything we learnt. We repeated the learning model over different exercises, which helped me to retain it after leaving."
"Everyone will take something different from it."
"It had a very clear, concise objective, clear delivery, and was very interactive and inclusive, and reviewed things at the end to recap the knowledge gained."
"The number of activities and the group interactions. There was a good balance between the exercises and the “lecture” phases."
"I think the different methods that were presented to us were very useful and I can totally see myself using them or recommending them to colleagues and friends."
"The group had a good atmosphere and it felt like a safe space."
"Was very thought provoking and interactive without being intimidating."
"The workshop felt applicable to both inside the workplace and outside the workplace."
"Sarah was great. Very concise and presented the learnings in an applicable way."
"A good mix of being talked to about ideas and techniques, and practical trying them out. Sarah was a good facilitator, she listened and answered questions well and didn't make it too cheesy."
"It was practical, informal and interactive."
"Comfortable atmosphere and good sized group. Sarah was great; easy-going, knowledgeable, really listened to us and tailored the session to our examples. Felt like I could trust her."
"The way it was led, its hands on nature, the mix of attendees."
"Loved the bite-sized session, my first experience of it and amazed how much we covered."
"Good mix of presenter-led learning and group/partnering-up tasks."
"It was great to have Ingrid as a coach, and she understood perfectly the impact of having English as a second language. I didn't need to justify myself too much or explain in too much depth so it was really great to have someone build on my comments as she went through a similar process! And she did a great job in condensing the workshop in two hours."
"Ella took us to a deeper level and gave the background to why this is important to breath correctly and how it impacts your body."
"Relaxed and friendly with good easy simple techniques to use anywhere."
"It covered a lot of different techniques for approaching storytelling as well as problem solving and I feel like I came away with lots of simple but useful tools to put into practice on day-to-day projects."
"There were really interesting tools and exercises that I will be using in the future. The pace was just right too."
"Techniques I can take back to the team to free up ideation."
"I liked the interesting content & the way it was delivered, it felt relaxed & engaging succinct, relevant information with good quotes and humour!"
"I’m still quite new to the team, and it was quite a nice chance to spend some more time with my colleagues in a different situation, but felt comfortable enough to speak."
"Mark was brilliant! It was really engaging. You can really see he cares about the people in the room he is presenting to and wanting to help."
"Mark really encouraged all the members of the group to express themselves."
"I felt empowered and more confident about my own presenting after just a few hours."
"It was very active and involved, which was helpful in getting information to land i.e. activity on multi tasking. It’s always good to bring ideas like this to life."
"The levels of interaction between those attending the workshop were the best I’ve seen at YCN, helped enormously by Caroline’s energy and ability to address everyone by name."
"I also practise meditation outside of work, and so I liked that it was being offered to others within my team that I think may have been apprehensive about the benefits of this to begin with! It was a great mix of listening to Nick, listening to others give examples and practicing the skills we were learning in pairs. For me, it was a great way to learn and thoroughly engaging."
"I’ve already recommended it to my colleagues, my partner and my closest friend."
"The content was interesting and engaging. Particularly liked the way Katy began the workshop with the Max Planck story; it set the scene really well. There was a good balance of round table discussion and getting up out of your seats too."
"It was dynamic and fast moving. Identified the problem then looked to at ways to solve those problems, so real applicable techniques."
"Well facilitated, encouraged open discussion and sharing of thoughts and ideas. Also a nice forum for getting to know colleagues from different teams."
"Informative, incredibly helpful, and concise; no time was wasted. Really impressive how much ground was covered in one hour. It was insightful enough to really feel helpful but also bitesize enough to feel digestible in an hour."
"A lot of information consolidation into a snappy workshop. Practical tools and references for more reading are also great."
"It taught me a number of approaches that I did not know before."
"I loved the way it was ‘facilitated’ vs presented/dictated, making it about us and our experiences and needs. I’ve been in very one way sessions before where it’s about one person talking through endless slides and engagement and flexibility is low. This felt fluid and adaptable to suit the group."
"It felt very relevant to me personally and grounded in real life experiences and practices."
When asked: "How could it have been improved for you personally?"
"It would have been great to explore more examples of how other companies use the method."
"The role play was quite hard for the last activity, a better explanation of what is expected for this would help as people were unsure of how far to take it."
"Less time spent on group breakout sessions and more time spent working on actual techniques."
"I also felt that, as a more senior manager in a room of comms people that I knew, I had to be really careful about talking about any work scenarios, which then probably limited what I personally took from the session."
"I wonder if it would be good to make it clearer what to prepare beforehand. I should have come to the workshop with a more specific challenge / task that I'm currently working on as I think that would have helped translate the tasks during the workshop."
"It’d be great to do a call back and continue to embed the learnings."
"I guess I felt the use of glow sticks for the energy exercise was unnecessary, what with the whole single-use plastic issue."
"I feel like it would have been useful to have some of the questions in advance. During the 5 minute role-play exercises, I feel like time was wasted trying to think of a time I’ve given/received feedback."
"More time to get to know other members of the group."
"I think there could have been a more pointed conversation about the experience at our place of work and where and when resilience is needed."
"Whilst the books are undoubtedly useful, in our industry I find the constant reference to lots of books quite overwhelming. It can feel as though, unless you read these x10/20/30 books per topic then you're uninformed!"