Role Play in Training and Coaching Sessions
Practising a Likely Situation
The use of role play is a tool which is used to good effect by many managers and trainers around the world when it comes to developing the skills, and particularly the confidence, of their employees to perform a particular role at work. Aside from letting them loose on a real life situation such as dealing with customer complaints over the telephone for real, role play is the next best thing in that they can practise all of the skills and techniques they need to perform the function but without running the risk of causing an incident as could happen if they were thrown straight into the task without any practice.
Role Play and Business Coaching for Learning Skills
Role play is often used in conjunction with providing business coaching as the two can both highlight the requirement for additional training that may be required for the employee, either before they commence with a new task or job role, or to make them even more proficient in the role which they are currently employed in.
Having Fun is an Effective Way to Learn
For many employees, role play is a fun way to learn and is much more effective for them than simply being lectured to about what they should and should not do. It also gives them an opportunity to make any mistakes in a practice situation which will not cause any damage, and will allow the trainer to correct their technique in readiness for the employee working on a live situation.
All Levels of Experience in the Job Role Will Benefit
It is not just new and inexperienced employees who will benefit from role play. Those who have been performing the task for real are unlikely to know everything or do everything perfectly. Group role play where situations are played out whilst other team members watch may also provide them with valuable hints and tips for things that their colleagues do which they had not thought of.
Learning Through Role Play May Not Be Suitable For All Job Types
Whilst role play is highly effective for job roles and activities such as sales and customer relations which require people to be outgoing and extroverted to a certain level, for other employees with different workplace duties the idea of role play may be abhorrent and cause embarrassment, and will not actually be necessary for the type of work that they do.
Good managers will realise that whilst some employees may need pushing in order to be taken out of their comfort zone, there will be times and certain employees who will resist a particular training method and will require a different approach. Being able to recognise that a one-size-fits-all approach to training or indeed other forms of dealing with employees is a particularly important managerial skill for managers to learn.