Do you have what it takes to be a Corporate Trainer?

Most professions today need certain specific skill sets that have to be learned in the classroom or through experience. While formal education provides a basic framework to all of us, we still need to invest time and effort in acquiring knowledge and functional skills specific to an industry. That’s where professional trainers come into the picture.

If you thought that anyone armed with above average public speaking skills and a funny icebreaker could become a Corporate Trainer, think again, because there is more to it than what meets the eye. Here is what you need to know about a career in corporate training:

The first step
There is no one method to become a trainer. In my experience so far, I have hardly seen any young professional articulating his ambition to become a trainer at the start of their career. Corporate training is typically a job people come to after they’ve worked for a while and gained considerable experience.

“Most of our trainers started at the company in a technical position and became interested in training. They became experts in their domains after a period of time and also demonstrated an inherent ability to work with people, so we promoted them as in-house trainers” says Ravi Kant Verma; a training manager with a Delhi-based IT company.

A good first step for professionals is to develop a technical or functional skill that they can build on and use as a way to transition over to a training job. Expertise in a field will also improve the credibility of a professional which is critical for the success of a corporate trainer.

Corporate training as a career
Progressive organisations have realised that training their employees on a continuous basis is the only real way to stay ahead of the competition. Corporate trainers typically find themselves teaching topics that people don’t learn in their formal education, such as communication skills, business writing etiquette, public speaking, presentation skills and other job-specific functional and technical skills.

There is a great need on behalf of corporations to improve the way their employees present themselves to the outside world and training them is the straightforward answer. Trainers have the option of working as in-house trainers with organisations, join a specialist training firm or even work as independent/freelance trainers.

How different is this from teaching?
There is a difference between conventional teaching and training. The former is simply conveying information, which can be accomplished with a PowerPoint presentation or a classroom lecture. Professional training, however, provides people with the tools and skills they need either to change their behaviour or develop new skill sets they never had before.

In order to teach other people new behaviours, a trainer should develop these abilities beforehand. Also, most importantly, corporate trainers have to deal with mature adult audiences who have their own experiences and perceptions. Teachers have a certain position of authority because of which students have a natural tendency to follow their instructions, trainers enjoy no such luxury and have to build strong relationships with their learners to get the message across.

Skills required for a career in training
Trainers need to possess a natural ease in dealing with people, an ability to present themselves with confidence, speak before a large audience with conviction, a mature thought process to create training material relevant to their audience, spontaneity to respond to difficult situations with ease, a good sense of humour, loads of enthusiasm and most importantly a passion for the subject matter that is being presented.

Most good trainers also have that indefinable ‘charm’ that makes them create magic in a training forum and leave a lasting impact.

Can you train to be a trainer?
There are several ‘Train the Trainer’ programmes available for aspiring trainers. Most certification programmes last anywhere between 3 to 5 days.

Academic bodies like ISTD (Indian Society of Training & Development) and XLRI (Jamshedpur) offer such certifications. These certifications are also offered by several Training and Consulting firms. Getting a certification is a good start for new trainers and usually helps them understand ‘training’ as a function and also helps them acquire ‘trainer-like qualities’.

Training certifications typically verify that their holder has an adequate grasp of essential fundamentals, at a certain acceptable level. A certification programme will equip you with the basic knowledge of how to make presentations effectively, design training courses, how to conduct a training needs analysis, how to set objectives for a training programme, how to deliver training effectively and evaluate the effectiveness of training.

Professionals must note that certification says nothing about quality or richness of experience and does not measure or reflect the hard-to-quantify characteristics that distinguish a ‘seasoned trainer’ from a novice. It is, however, a great ‘starting point’ for those relatively new to the field.

In the words of the famous author, Mark Twain, “There is nothing training cannot do. Nothing is above its reach. It can turn bad morals to good; it can destroy bad principles and recreate good ones; it can lift men to angelship”.

Corporate training is an elusive art. There is no checklist to follow in order to excel in this profession. You not only need tremendous confidence in your level of expertise, but also in your ability to entertain and educate an audience.

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Harsha Bhogle: “Make mistakes but never repeat them!”

AFTER so many years in the profession it might seem unusual to say so – but I should never have been in television. I didn’t have what it took and for a better part of my career I was defined by who I wasn’t rather than by who I was! I wasn’t a test cricketer, I didn’t look like a suiting model (far from it!), I had no sense of fashion or colours. I wore large glasses, I had gaps in my teeth and I spoke too fast. It has been suggested that I had a face for radio and after the first programme of a new series for ESPN, the producer said (though I must admit, not at the time) that there was everything wrong with it, including the anchor.

Worse still I had no one to look up to. Live television was very young in India and Doordarshan was the only channel. I guess you could say that, as a result, I knew what not to do but didn’t always know what was right. And so I had no choice but to learn by making mistakes. I did what I thought was right and if it was wrong, I tried not to do it again.

Big blunders 
I made many mistakes. I once ended a presentation ceremony at the end of a high profile tournament halfway through because I thought the director was telling me to move on when in reality he was telling someone else. I had very little idea of how to use the ear-piece through which the presenter gets instructions from the director. So when he said, “After this we will go to an interview” I assumed he was talking only to me and not to the crew so after that particular award had been given, I turned to camera and said “That’s it from the presentation”. WhenI turned there were a million eyes boring holes into me. I crept up to where the producer was, feeling as terrible as anyone could, and said, “Sorry Rik, I promise it will never happen again”. He put me at ease but I knew I had committed a blunder.


He is never afraid of learning. He learns from everyone around him. 

Making mistakes isn’t a crime, repeating them is!
Indeed the year before that, I was first asked to present the telecast and I said, “Yes”, without having a clue about what it meant. So before leaving for Chennai, my wife and I went to buy a couple of jackets. We only knew one store so we went to the Raymond shop and as it turned out they only had double breasted jackets so those were what we bought! One of those was a black and white striped jacket, the kind you should never wear on television because the picture jitters.

But I learnt one thing about mistakes and about failure. It is not a crime to commit them, but it is criminal not to learn from them and ensure they are not repeated. If you make one mistake it tends to be pardoned but if you keep making it, no one is interested in you anymore.

Look, failure is a necessity
And you know, little failures are like potholes on a road. After a while you know where not to drive. Also, you learn what not to do and it was thus that I learnt what I did about television. So if you fail, don’t think it is the end of the world. Ask yourself why you failed and promise yourself that you will never do it again. You will actually emerge tougher. In a programme my wife and I did some years ago, an Australian sports psychologist told us that when they put together elite squadrons in Australia, they don’t pick you if you’ve never failed because if you have never been face-to-face with failure you may not know what to do when confronted by it. If, however, you have looked failure in the eye, vanquished it and returned stronger, you are considered a better candidate.

The one thing we should all try to do in life is to convert a problem into an advantage, into an opportunity. Because I didn’t have much to start with, I tried much harder than anyone else, I was never afraid of learning. I learnt to be professional from the cameramen and the editors on the crew, I learnt what colours are good for television from Navjot Sidhu, I learnt how to knot a tie from my friend whose camera I had to look into, I learnt how to iron a jacket from someone else.

Unfortunately in India we condemn failure too strongly, we attach a social status to it and clothe failures with a stigma. Stay away from such people or better still, try harder to prove them wrong. Failure can sometimes drive you towards getting even better than you would have if you hadn’t failed.



We fail when we fear failure 

But remember, failure can be a friend only if you learn from it and never repeat it. There are hundreds of stories around you of what the human spirit can do. Failure is not an enemy, failure is not fatal so don’t fear it because the more you fear it, the more you attract it. I found that the day I stopped being afraid of failing, I grew much more relaxed. I told myself, ‘what is the worst thing that will happen?’. I would have had to apologise on air, in front of all those viewers but I would only be apologising for a mistake, I wouldn’t be committing a crime.

Very often we fail because we are afraid of failing, because we fear the aftermath of failure. I didn’t do well at all in my first term at IIM Ahmedabadbecause I spent more time fearing a D or an F than actually studying – which would have saved me in the first place. So relax, if you fear failure, it will encircle you.

If failure, if mistakes, could ruin people, then I would never be in television.


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10 things Entrepreneurs can learn from Muhammad Ali

1. Build a brand around your aspirations. “I am the greatest, I said that even before I knew I was. I figured that if I said it enough, I would convince the world that I really was the greatest.”

2. Don’t be afraid to fight for what you want. “At home I am a nice guy: but I don’t want the world to know. Humble people, I’ve found, don’t get very far.”

3. Learn how to make friends. “Friendship… is not something you learn in school. But if you haven’t learned the meaning of friendship, you really haven’t learned anything.”

4. Embrace training. “I hated every minute of training, but I said, don’t quit. Suffer now and live the rest of your life as a champion.”

5. Let your focus set you free. “I know where I’m going and I know the truth, and I don’t have to be what you want me to be. I’m free to be what I want.”

6. Don’t let defeats destroy you. “I never thought of losing, but now that it’ s happened, the only thing is to do it right. That’s my obligation to all the people who believe in me. We all have to take defeats in life.”

7. Anyone can be great. “If they can make penicillin out of moldy bread, they can sure make something out of you.”

8. What you think is what you become. “It’s the repetition of affirmations that leads to belief. And once that belief becomes a deep conviction, things begin to happen.”

9. Defeat leads to victory. “Only a man who knows what it is like to be defeated can reach down to the bottom of his soul and come up with the extra ounce of power it takes to win when the match is even.”

10. The battle is won in your mind. “The fight is won or lost far away from witnesses – behind the lines, in the gym, and out there on the road, long before I dance under those lights.”

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Creating a Healthy Mindset

Do you feel you could use a healthier attitude toward life? Would you like to approach things in a different way? Is a healthier lifestyle attainable?26-3-14_1 (1)

The stress of modern life can sometimes make it difficult to lead a healthy lifestyle. However, you can start living healthy, today, by adopting a healthy mindset.

Even if you find yourself leaning toward a pessimistic attitude, you can still achieve a healthy mindset. You just need to go about it in the right way.

How You Can Have a Healthier Mindset

Many people sit back, look at their lives, and wish they could view things in a more positive manner. Then they beat themselves up for being negative or not having the attitude and responses they wish they had. This typical response doesn’t do anybody any good.

Instead of feeling angry with yourself for responding to life the way you normally do, think positively about your desire to have a healthier mindset.

Building a Healthy and Safe Support Network

One of the most effective paths to a healthier mindset is to find ways to deal with the stress in your life. For some people, this is as simple as writing in a journal or blog every day. Other people find that talking with friends or joining a support group is a rewarding experience.

It’s important to give voice to your thoughts and emotions. How you do this is up to you.

Eating Healthy = Feeling Healthy

Another way to achieve a healthier mindset is to eat the right foods and get enough rest. When you feed your body healthy, nutritious foods and get the rest you need, you feel better all over. Your attitude, as well as your body, feels refreshed.

Food and rest will not change the way you respond to things if you tend to respond negatively, but it will be a great start. You don’t have to give up all junk food and your late night activities, but try swapping carrot sticks for French fries and an hour of sleep for Leno.

You’ll find that you’ll be able to acquire a healthier mindset when you take active steps to deal with your stress and treat your body with the tender loving care it deserves. Suddenly the world becomes a much more positive place when you pair these things with positive thinking.

Positive thinking begins when you affirm the positives in your life. You can use the power of positive affirmations to reprogram your mind so you can think in a healthier and more positive way.

For example, each morning you could say, “I make positive choices for the best of my body, mind, and soul.” You can use positive affirmations in moments of weakness when you are tempted to fill up on junk food, respond negatively to something, or trade sleep for something less important.

When you create a healthy mindset by making good choices about food, rest, and positive thinking, you’ll enjoy the new ways you think, feel, and live. You’ll discover that your happier, healthier lifestyle has arrived!

Boost Your Attitude For Success

Boost Your Attitude for Success

Your attitude about life is one of the most important factors for success. A bad attitude gets you nowhere, while a good one can provide you with enough motivation to succeed beyond your dreams.

You may think that you already have a success-mindset, and perhaps you do. However, you can always benefit from strengthening that attitude and therefore increasing your chances for the success you deserve.

Follow these strategies for improving your attitude for success:

Find your inspiration. Discover what inspires you the most and use it to jumpstart your motivation whenever you go. Feeling inspired enables you to maintain the drive necessary to find success. Do anything you can within your power to find inspiration.

Make a list of your ultimate dreams, and then ask yourself if you’re on the right path. If you are, you’ll know that everything you’re doing will be rewarded.

If you don’t feel like you’re on the right path, perhaps it’s time for a change. Maybe there’s a deeper reason why you’ve felt a lack of motivation. Reflect on what this reason might be, and then decide on how you can renew your drive. When you’re on the right journey, you’ll feel inspired!

Surround yourself with positive people. When you’re around positive and inspiring people, you’re more likely to adopt those traits into your own personality and go for your goals with enthusiasm. Negative people, on the other hand, tend to make you negative also.

If you must be around people


that continually bring you down, do your best to avoid taking what they say to heart. You know that they don’t speak the truth. Keep the peace as best as you can to get through these situations and then move on.

Take a leap. The best way to improve your attitude might be to just jump right into life. Don’t be afraid to take initiative and plunge forward towards your goals. People who take action find success. If you take action and start to see the results of your efforts, your attitude will only improve.

The increased drive and motivation you get from your actions can be the difference between success and failure.

Strengthen your focus. Your focus can also play a role in your attitude. When you maintain driven toward success, it’s easier to have an optimistic attitude. If you have a lack of focus and don’t know where you’re going, it leads to being unmotivated and uncaring.

The main things to keep in mind are that the combo of inspiration, positive thoughts, and proper motivation can lead you to a healthy and positive attitude. Follow these strategies daily and you’ll notice a boost in your spirits!Allow for mistakes. You’re only human and you will make mistakes from time to time. Be careful to avoid judging yourself harshly when this happens, as it negatively affects your self-confidence. If you work on more of a “go with the flow” attitude, you’ll find that you’re able to pick yourself back up and continue moving forward when you do make a mistake.


Overcoming Brand Banality Disney-Style

Disney-positions-itself-as-the-new-tentpole-power-houseWarren Buffett discusses the power of branding and Disney. But, how does Disney do it. Here’s the secret –Branding from the Inside Out:

Somewhere in the world, the following two scenarios are currently being played out. Both reflect a passive, victim mentality. Both undermine the brand. Both open the door to competitors.

Scenario #1:

“This weak economy is killing me. ‘Do more with less’ is the name of the game. My budgets are slashed and I have no wiggle room.”

The Result?

  • I don’t have the budget, time or people for training.
  •  Why train employees?  They’ll be gone pretty soon.

Scenario #2:

“This booming economy is killing me. We’re barely filling existing orders. Plus I can’t keep my good people. They jump ship as soon as someone else comes along waving a little extra money.”

The Result?

  • I don’t have the time or people for training.
  • Why train employees? They’ll be gone pretty soon.

Blaming the economy is a convenient excuse for not providing training and far too many organizations just don’t get it. The billions of dollars organizations spend each year on marketing and branding efforts are, for the most part, wasted. Why? Because the restaurants, stores and law firms awaiting those new customers attracted by the marketing campaign are all too often filled with indifferent employees. Yes, new clients and customers might appear, but far too many organizations chase them away with lousy service and lackadaisical employees.

Cutting corners on employee training is a guaranteed path to brand banality.

Jim Cora, retired Chairman, Disneyland International, sums up the training rationale he successfully used during his 43-year career at Disney,

 “Marketing is the time and money you spend to get people in the door. Training is the investment you make to get guests to come back and cast members to stay; it creates loyalty. If show was affected, I never cut corners to save money. I never cancelled a training program if it helped our show.”

This is branding from the inside-out and is one of the many reasons the Disney brand stands out in the mind of Warren Buffett. Training never takes a back seat. Take a look:

Source – [DougLipp]

Do you have Kikubari in you?

Kikubari, translated into English, means any of the following:

  • To be other-centered.
  • To give
  • To focus on those around you, not yourself
  • Think of others
  • Be selfless, not selfish

Last summer I had the honor of speaking at a conference attended by over 2,500 independent pharmacists.  Just before I spoke, a married couple ─ both of whom were pharmacists ─ addressed the audience.  They talked about how the pharmacy they owned had been completely destroyed during the tornado that devastated Joplin, Missouri on May 22.  More important was their story of how the community came together during that tragedy; strangers helping strangers, people risking their lives to reach out to their neighbors, everyone pitching in.  Within a week, this couple was able to throw together a makeshift pharmacy, in a temporary location.  They then worked feverishly to provide vital prescription medications to their community.

While choking back tears, they told the audience about the many people who had pitched in to help them rebuild their family business.  They couldn’t have done it alone.  Although they didn’t use the word, they were the beneficiaries of Kikubari.

I first learned this word almost 40 years ago, as a teenager, when I started studying the Japanese language.  It is a truly fascinating word.  It is made up of two characters from the Japanese alphabet known as kanji.  There are literally thousands of kanji characters and each one has a meaning … this is not a phonetic alphabet.  Here are the two kanji words that, when put together, make up the combined word for kikubari:

Ki means “energy,” or “power.” Kubari means “to distribute,” “pass out“ or, “to give.” Together, they mean exactly what that couple from Joplin, Missouri experienced when they, with the help of their community, rebuilt their business from a pile of rubble.  This is Kikubari.

The people of Japan live and breathe the concept of Kikubari every day.  Why do you think there was no looting in the areas devastated by the earthquake and tsunami that recently jolted Japan?  This is Kikubari.

What do you do that equals Kikubari?  Don’t wait for a disaster, start today.

Source – [DougLipp]


Tigger Teambuilding

Sweat is pouring into my eyes, but I can’t wipe them.  I’ve lost all sense of direction.  I can barely see where I’m going, yet know I’m surrounded by people.  Oh, yeah, there’s one more thing that scares the heck out of me, a fear that is all-consuming … I hope I don’t step on someone’s child. Finally, my “handler” guides me away from the crowds and through the door that leads the backstage dressing room.  I’m exhausted.

As I recover from my ordeal, I reflect on the last few hours and come to an amazing conclusion: Being Tigger isn’t exactly a walk in the park.  This job wasn’t nearly as easy as I thought it would be.  It took some convincing, though.  I had to spend several hours encased in 20 pounds of bacterially-challenged fur. Better yet, I had to maintain my balance while supporting the massive helmet that covered my head.  On top of that, I had to endure the endless pokes and prods from customers vying for my attention … pokes and prods that occasionally hit some sensitive areas … I guess they thought they were poking Tigger’s belly-button.tumblr_lyqa41HPxo1qjq6a8o1_400

I, along with several other employees, got to be “costumed characters” as part of a job-sharing program at Disneyland.  In addition to the time we spent in those amazingly confining costumes, we also got to meet the professional actors who work as the characters, full-time.  We heard about the hours and hours of training they receive to learn how to “become” the characters they are portraying.  We listened to their many stories of unique customer interactions with a newfound sense of respect and compassion.  We asked a lot of questions: How could they do this job during those blistering hot mid-summer days?  How did they maintain their sense of humor while being jostled by thousands of customers on a daily basis?   After being Tigger for a day, I had a newfound respect for those employees who, at first glance, seemed to have the easiest job in the world.  After all, no one ever yells at Mickey Mouse when the weather is lousy or when a ride breaks down, right?  We learned a lot.

Job-sharing is a powerful tool for building strong teams.  Hearing about or, better yet, doing the job of a colleague who is on a different shift, or who works in a different division, is a powerful leadership and customer service tool.  At a minimum, job-sharing can reduce the barriers that often develop between employee groups−the infamous silos that can destroy collaboration and communication. It can minimize or eliminate the inevitable “grass is greener on the other side” petty jealousy traps that plague so many teams.  In some work environments, job-sharing can be used as a cross-training tool. And, it can be as simple as a noontime brown-bag-lunch event where employees share the pros and cons of their jobs.

You can make job-sharing as complicated or as simple as you want.  The benefits are endless and I’ve never heard an excuse for not doing it that couldn’t be overcome … with a bit of creativity and flexibility.

After my day of being Tigger, I went back to my regular job at the Disney University with a new sense of appreciation and motivation.  Yes, there would certainly be tough days and challenging meetings, but I was overjoyed knowing that I wouldn’t have to endure the character challenges: the unbearably hot costume, the streams of sweat attacking my eyes and, most important … no more pokes in the “belly-button.”


The “Flattys” Don’t Come Back- Two Vital Lessons Most of Us Have Forgotten

circus1Flattys.  This is how circus performers refer to their customers, the audience in the bleachers.

The reason?  Since the audience is sitting beyond the reach of the bright lights shining on the performers, they appear – at least to the performers – as a faceless, emotionless, one-dimensional blob of cardboard cutouts.  Hence, the word flatty.

Who would think of their customers as a faceless, emotionless blob of cardboard cutouts?

No one in their right mind would openly admit to this, yet countless companies continue to act as if their customers, and employees, are nothing more than flattys … they don’t matter and are easily replaceable.  Their opinions don’t matter, so no need to ask them about the quality of the show or how to improve, right?

Here’s some sage advice I heard years ago from a colleague named Hal Burrows.  “The flattys don’t come back.”  In other words, treat people with indifference and they will be done with you.  Hal was a time-management consultant I hired when I was in charge of training at the Disney University at Disney Studios. Hal helped create the award-winning “Managing Management Time” training program with Bill Oncken, better known as the “Who’s Got the Monkey?” time management seminar.  Hal and I collaborated on a newer version of the time management seminar that we planned to call “The Monkey Meets the Mouse,” but that never flew with Disney leadership (that’s another story, altogether!). Hal eventually teamed up with Ken Blanchard to create the best-selling “The Monkey Meets the One-Minute Manager.”  Hal was not one to take “no” for an answer.

I guess Hal was tight with circus performers since he was constantly harping on companies to treat their employees and customers with more respect, not like flattys.  This is why Hal and I connected so well; our role in the Disney University was to ensure the quality of our “show,” both to our Cast Members and our Guests. I write extensively about this in my new book, “Disney U: How Disney University Creates the World’s Most Engaged, Loyal and Customer-Centric Employees.”

So, what are you and your company doing to avoid the dreaded “flatty syndrome?”   Here are two vital behaviors guaranteed to ensure employees and customers aren’t being treated like flattys.  Despite sounding amazingly simple, these two behaviors are profoundly absent in many organizations:

Greet people. Thank people.  Say “hello.”  Say “goodbye.” Say “thank you.” And do this with some direct eye-contact (yes, it means tearing your eyes away from your phone or computer for a few seconds).  Since a growing number of customers and team members can also be in far-flung locations, it might mean sending a text, e-mail or letter expressing your appreciation.  When was the last time you did this?

Flattys don’t come back, but those who are appreciated and respected do.

Stop time-wasting meetings in their tracks

I once spent 90 minutes listening to someone describe, in excruciating detail, a concept that they’d already shown me 2 weeks earlier. Why did I do this? Because I didn’t want to be rude. Because we’d set aside 2 hours for the meeting anyway, so we might as well fill the time. Because we hadn’t confirmed the discussion points beforehand. Sound familiar?

Fortunately, there is an answer! You can use iMindMap to save you time before, during and after meetings; ensure that you don’t fall asleep from boredom; and guarantee you get something worthwhile out of it. Here’s how…


1. Be strict in your planning

Make a map to plan your meeting, starting with the objectives. What do you need to get out of this meeting? What is the point? Outline an agenda that is specifically targeted at those objectives. Anything that isn’t relevant must either be scrapped or discussed at another time.

If there is extra information on the meeting topic, you can put this in a document and attach it to your map for attendees to review before the meeting. Before is far better than during if you want more considered ideas or quality feedback.

Next consider the ‘Who’. Who needs to be involved in this agenda? If someone is only on the list because they need to be kept in the loop, rather than to actually contribute, then cross their name off and send them the meeting minutes afterwards. The more people involved, the longer the meeting will run and the more tangents you will wander off on.

Remember – there is no rule to say every person needs to be present for the whole meeting either. Think of it like a play; actors are only on stage when they have something to say or something to respond to. Otherwise, they would just be standing awkwardly, taking up space.

Finally, address the details such as time, location, supplies etc.  When complete you can send the map to all of the attendees before the meeting.

2. Capture the important bits only

If you are capturing the minutes from a meeting, you will usually find yourself furiously trying to scribble down everything that is said, missing huge chunks and not being able to contribute anything yourself. Using iMindMap on your laptop or tablet instead can save you a ton of time.

To keep your notes clear, use a branch for every topic or person/department involved in the meeting. When anything is discussed that is relevant to that topic/person, you can add it onto that branch. This way you can maintain a coherent structure to your notes without having to squeeze extra points into the margin when the discussion suddenly backpeddles to an earlier topic.

Sometimes an exact transcript may be required, but for the majority of meetings thekey points will suffice. Try to let go of the fear of missing something important – ironically this is far more likely to happen if you try to write down every word. Use key words wherever possible instead and make use of the Audio Notes feature to record sections of the conversation if you don’t want to have to worry about capturing it yourself.

For every topic you should also have a separate branch for Action Points that will show what needs to be done to achieve the related objectives. You can also use Relationship arrows to show information that is connected or will impact on certain tasks. Don’t forget to include deadlines and the person/people responsible here as well.

For a really powerful way to run a meeting, hook up to a big screen so the whole group can see the minutes map. This is a fantastic way of providing a live overview, as well as ensuring you have consensus from everyone involved on the points you’ve captured.

3. Know what comes next

How many meetings have you had where you’ve come out feeling inspired, motivated, ready for action…only for nothing to ever actually come of it? This is a trap many of us fall into. We get so carried away by the exciting ideas and the fact that we’re all agreeing with each other, that all we’re doing is patting each other on the back and further explaining why the idea we’ve had is such a good idea. What we fail to realise is that no one actually knows who is supposed to do what next to make this idea happen.

Now if you’ve been using your map and an Action Point branch for every topic, you shouldn’t have this problem. It’s refreshingly simple – if you get to the end of the meeting and don’t have any action points on your map, then you aren’t finished! Using iMindMap means that it is instantly clear where the gaps are.

After the meeting you can send your map out to all of the relevant parties and they will have a visual snapshot of what was covered and what they need to do next.

Source – [TonyBuzan]