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Styles of Learning
Multitasking is one of the key function of a human brain, which makes us greater than all other species. Due to the capacity of learning different things, it makes us remain in different stages of awareness for different types of skills. Based on these, the methods to train the individual candidate may be different. Therefore, nowadays, a learner-focused environment is of most importance. Just as there are multiple profiles of learners, there are multiple ways people learn as well.
Following are the five senses that a learner uses to learn anything −
- Auditory (To Hear)
- Kinesthetic (To Feel)
- Visual (To See)
- Olfactory (To take smell)
- Gustatory (To taste)
The first three senses are essential to account for training methods and have been being used primarily, while Olfactory and Gustatory are not related to our concerned topic.
To process an information and store it, one may like to hear it from someone or maybe experience the work by being a part of the working team or even watch the others work. Which method is suitable for which candidate is a matter of coincidence. Sometimes, a combination of these methods can also be useful.
Learn through Auditory Senses
The learner for whom hearing information is the most suited method to remember comes under this category. They will prefer to listen to a recorded subject rather than reading it. They remember the piece of information better when they hear it instead of reading it.
You will find such people more suitable for sales calls over the telephone because they are very attentive and receptive to voice fluctuations, and intonations.
Following are the methods one can adopt to train the auditory learners −
Have regular conversations with the person.
Provide frequent lectures/presentations.
Make provisions for question & answer sessions or doubt clearing sessions.
Open discussions should be done on a regular basis.
Equip the person with recorded materials (Audio/Video).
Learn through Kinesthetic Senses
Those who prefer to work in actuality and experience, instead of only hearing, come under this category of learners. They are also called physical learners or practical learners. They learn through practical experience of the work, by feeling every bit of it, to be precise.
Those who learn through kinesthetic senses can even notice and learn facial expressions during a conversation. They can remember the locations once they are involved in it. They would prefer going on a site visit over listening or reading about it. They would prefer reading as a secondary approach after having a practical experience. They may attend lectures, but that will be of limited approach to them unless a practical or mock demonstration is included in it.
Following are the methods, one can adopt to train the kinesthetic learners −
- Ask them to make a demonstration
- Engage them into roll play
- Equip them with recorded videos
- Metaphors and mental paintings can be helpful
Learn through Visual Senses
The visual learners are those who learn things easily by watching. They are the ones who like reading books. They would prefer artistic representations such as paintings, drawings or music.
Those who learn through visual senses believe in what they have seen. A distraction of noise won’t disturb them, but anything that blocks their sight will. There are some employees, who would ask you to give directions on paper by either drawing or writing. You can easily understand that they are the visual category ones.
Following are the methods one can adopt to train the Visual learners −
- Paper presentations or power point presentations.
- Animated video demonstrations
- Leaflets, charts, posters etc.
- Insist on them to take written notes while a lecture is being taken.
The idea is to ensure that the candidate receives what is being taught in whichever method he is suited for, to avail training for him in all the methods. Besides, one must keep looking for any other methods that can be applied based on any particular learning style possessed by him, which you can observe by the clues offered by him.
One more good idea is to ask the candidate himself, what are the methods he/she prefers to learn anything? We all have been getting trained throughout our life so far. Every individual knows whether he/she would prefer listening, reading, attending a seminar, working in a team or any other way to learn things. So, this can be a timesaving idea to ask him about it.
Now that you know what are the methods a learner may require to take in the skills, it is up to you how better you can utilize this knowledge and arrange sales training for your team.