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....and many other thoughts about facilitation, coaching ( teams & individuals) and learning


  • David

Difficult Learners

Updated: Mar 21, 2022

I had some new learning on how to manage learners in class.

In one of my recent classes in Hong Kong, there was 1 learner who appeared to be very sceptical to the class in the beginning. In expressing his expectation, he said it quite critically that he wanted practical tools. And more importantly, it was about what he did not say. In fact, he was very quiet – he virtually did not speak up at all on day 1 and 2. I also found him to be very reserved with his facial expression (e.g. frowning) and body language (e.g. arm folding) Frankly, I thought this may be a ‘bomb’ in the course. I ‘monitored’ him closely to find chance to win him over.

Interestingly, before I did anything, his behaviour suddenly changed. I can still remember the moment he broke the silence. As no learner had responded to 1 of our question for quite a while, he suddenly raised his hand and spoke!! Subsequently he shared more and more his thought, and expressed his appreciation to the course.

It was so encouraging. More importantly, I learn from this experience. Different learners do have different styles. In addition, I should avoid the mindset – ‘Learners want me to fail’. Instead, I should adopt another one – ‘Learners want me to be successful’. The latter is much more USEFUL.

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