Did Video Kill the Training Star?

 In Blog

When we started delivering training back in the 1990’s we were purists in that we didn’t believe that online training (such as it was available back then) or training videos could possibly replace or get anywhere near face to face delivery.  That opinion broadly remains but has softened in the past few years, specifically since we were forced to go online during the COVID years. During these difficult times we discovered Zoom and MS Teams but we insisted we stick to our delivery style of keeping the sessions interactive and adaptable to the audience’s needs.  This has evolved into us producing some short videos because our research has informed us that they are very popular among people who don’t have the time or inclination to attend face to face or live online courses – so far over 4000 people have downloaded our videos.

We never believed in ‘off the shelf’ delivery that isn’t flexible and we still don’t, but we do think that that there is a place for short courses that either serve as reminders that can be revisited or as ‘a shot in the arm’ that will give a confidence boost and, hopefully, will serve as a catalyst to explore learning in more detail.

I’ve had a think about the pros and cons of online video training courses versus face to face delivery and my conclusions are below:

Online Videos:

Online videos have surged in popularity, especially due to their convenience and accessibility. They allow learners to access content from anywhere, at any time, making them highly flexible. This flexibility is particularly beneficial for working professionals and individuals with tight schedules. Online videos also provide the opportunity for self-paced learning, enabling learners to progress at their own speed, revisiting complex topics as needed.

Furthermore, online training can be highly cost-effective. Organisations save on expenses related to physical venues, travel, and printed materials. The ability to reach a global audience with a single video is another economic advantage. Additionally, online platforms can employ various multimedia elements such as animations, graphics, and interactive quizzes – although, if I’m honest, we do keep the graphics etc to a minimum.

Online training, however, is not without its drawbacks. The lack of face-to-face interaction can lead to a sense of isolation among learners. It can also be challenging to maintain engagement and motivation without the physical presence of an instructor or peers. Technical issues such as poor internet connectivity and platform compatibility can further impede the learning experience. Moreover, online training may not be suitable for all types of learning, particularly those that require hands-on practice or real-time feedback.

Face-to-Face Training:

Face-to-face training (still our preferred option), on the other hand, offers direct interaction between trainers and learners. This immediate feedback loop allows for dynamic discussions, real-time clarification of doubts, personalised instruction and group work which can significantly enhance understanding and retention. The physical presence of an instructor can also foster a more disciplined learning environment, potentially increasing motivation and engagement.

In addition, face-to-face training provides networking opportunities and opportunities to learn from your peers. Learners can interact, share experiences, and build professional relationships which can be beneficial for career growth. The hands-on nature of face-to-face sessions is invaluable, especially for skills-based training that requires practise and direct supervision.

However, face-to-face training can be logistically challenging and expensive. Organising such sessions often involves significant costs related to travel, accommodation, venue hire, and materials. It also requires participants to align their schedules, which can be a considerable constraint.

Both online training videos and face-to-face training have their unique strengths and limitations. The choice between the two largely depends on the specific learning needs, preferences, and circumstances of the learners. A blended approach, combining elements of both methods, is often the most effective strategy, leveraging the convenience of online learning with the interactivity and personal touch of face-to-face training.

Contact us at enquires@abbeydaletraining.co.uk for more information or have a look at our online courses at Udemy https://www.udemy.com/user/steve-bates-34/or our website https://www.abbeydaletraining.co.uk


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