Poster Presence

Printed posters are an excellent medium for making or reinforcing a point, or for enhancing your training environment. Depending on your topic, there are a variety of ways to use posters in your sessions. For example, if you are facilitating a program on how to do cardiovascular resuscitation (CPR) you can hang posters around the room that show each step in the resuscitation process. Following a demonstration of the procedure, participants can refer to the posters as they practice the skill.

In classes, such as supervisory skills, customer service, or employee motivation, you can hang posters with models of behavior or inspirational quotes related to the topic around the room (see Motivational Posters/Products in the Resources for Trainers in the appendices).

Because posters are portable and can be colorful and graphic, they are effective tools for reinforcing or expanding learning. Through the use of pictures, vibrant colors, and appropriate word context, posters add another dimension to the room and tie into the brain-based learning concepts that you read about in earlier chapters.

A shortcoming is that posters cannot be seen from a distance. For that reason, if you plan to refer to them or they are an intricate part of the program, purchase multiple copies of the same poster and put them at various points on walls throughout the room. Another downside of posters is their cost and short lifespan, because they are not durable unless protected. If they become tattered or dirty, they can actually distract learners who focus on the defects of the posters. To extend their usefulness and protect your investment, you can have your poster framed with glass or purchase the large plastic sleeve protectors designed for flip chart pages. These come in 10 different sizes and have a clear, write-on matte plastic surface, with Velcro on the back edges. The Velcro holds the covering to the frame once you peel it back and insert a poster or flip chart page (see The Training Warehouse in the Resources for Trainers in the appendices). You can also purchase tripod easels developed for the display of your mounted posters.


How can you incorporate posters into your upcoming training sessions?

What are some key themes from sessions that you regularly facilitate that might be put into a poster?

Customizing Posters

If your organization has a graphics department and print shop with four-color separation capability, create your own posters to fit exactly into your sessions. You can also use outside graphics companies. Find generic pictures (most graphics departments subscribe to services that provide such photos) that blend with your program themes, then add either motivational quotes (see Resources for Trainers in the appendices for graphics software) or program models and concepts. You can even add your corporate logo at the bottom. Doing so sends a subtle message to participants that this program was actually designed for them and the organization, rather than being an off the shelf product. The latter can cause resistance in some learners.

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