The Training of AsiaWorks Trainers
AsiaWorks prides itself on the quality of its trainers. Every year large numbers of individuals approach AsiaWorks to become an AsiaWorks trainer. Of these, only a few are selected and enter an internal Train-the-Trainer program.
Once selected, the process of developing a Trainer to full competency in leading AsiaWorks workshops takes 3 to 4 years. The training process is a true apprenticeship. Candidates learn the role of the Trainer by spending literally hundreds of hours in a live workshop environment, modelling the ways of thinking, speaking, and interacting of Senior Trainers. This is a rigorous process which demands not only intellectual understanding but also internalising the principles of the workshop fully at an emotional and experiential level.
These hours in the workshop room are supplemented with one-on-one coaching by a Senior Trainer who serves as the candidate's mentor throughout the training process. In addition, there are classroom sessions for working on specific facilitations skills such as making large-group presentations or debriefing experiential exercises. Video is sometimes used as a learning tool in these classroom sessions, both for providing a model of best practices, and for giving feedback to candidates. Selected readings from the great Eastern and Western philosophical and psychological traditions are included to expand the candidate's range of thinking about basic human issues.
Trainer candidates begin by learning the prepared script for the experiential exercises in the curriculum so that they can deliver the introduction, instructions and wrap-up and debrief of each exercise with consistent wording and a consistent contextual approach. Along with mastering the script and delivering it consistently, candidates also study the underlying purpose of each exercise and where it fits in the overall flow of the workshop.
Once the deeper context and flow of a workshop has been thoroughly understood and integrated, candidates take on the most challenging aspect of the facilitator's job: spontaneously interacting with participants' sharing to create insight and breakthrough. This is the final step in mastering the subtle art and science of facilitation. Again, this can only be learned live in the workshop room with the guidance of an experienced Senior Trainer.
Certification as an AsiaWorks Lead Trainer is only attained after a final period of solo trainings (usually 6 months to a year) and is awarded upon agreement of all Senior Trainers within the group. AsiaWorks Trainers are trained to be able to master both public and corporate programs and are therefore masters at building relationships with a wide cross section of audiences. The ability to train or coach someone on a family related matter at one time and then to switch to a corporate conversation with another immediately after, is a rare talent and one that takes years to develop.
AsiaWorks Trainers are also known for their flexibility in adapting to new environments and styles. They are truly international and multi-cultural, which is reflected in some of the work that we have been selected to undertake with global organisations.
This kind of facilitation is an old-fashioned vocation rather than just a job. It demands commitment to serving people's highest good and a willingness to set aside personal ego needs. In return, there is a high level of fulfilment in witnessing others achieve lasting breakthroughs to higher levels of functioning.