The College of Law is the UK’s leading and longest established law school with locations around the country in London Bloomsbury, London Moorgate, Guildford, Chester, Birmingham, Manchester, York and Bristol. The College offers a variety of learning and study options with a focus on facilitated learning through workshops delivered by its 350 Tutors who are all qualified solicitors and barristers and which build on its innovative I-Tutorials. As the workshops are key in embedding the learning from the I-Tutorials, Jon Formby, Senior Development Partner at the College wanted to support the tutors in developing their facilitation skills.
Following the success of its Inspiring Confidence in the Classroom pilot workshops run during the summer of 2009, Partners With You were asked to run these again over a one-week period in July 2010 at various College of Law venues. Run for up to 12 tutors at a time, each session was planned to help them communicate their messages more effectively both when delivering to large and small groups when facilitating workshop sessions.
Jon Formby says, “The Partners With You training was one of the most popular courses we provided last year and the feedback told us that the actors made the sessions very engaging and compelling. We decided that we would invest in more training as we knew that Partners With You would provide high quality sessions which would be different to the normal training programmes our tutors undertake”.
Partners With You Managing Director Sally Hindmarch explains, “We were delighted to be asked to create a week long programme for the College throughout the UK. Some of the venues wanted us to run our Inspiring Confidence workshop for an audience of only tutors to concentrate on inspiring confidence in the classroom, while others wanted a mixture of tutors and business professionals to attend and these sessions therefore had a different focus. It felt a little like we were organising a theatrical tour as we ensured that the actor/leaders were at the right site, with the right paperwork and hand outs at the right time!
And in those venues where we had run Partners With You workshops last year, we also tailored our Power of the Voice workshop to fit into the gaps in the College’s timetable, when the tutors would be available, and ran a combination of topics.“
In addition to running the workshops around the country over four working days, Partners With You was asked to set up networking workshops on the fifth day of the training week as both business professionals and tutors from the three northern centres would be together in Manchester looking at the selling points of the whole region. “Many of the staff attending don’t see selling as a key part of their role but are all involved in promoting the college on open days and events. We were able to create a fun, relevant and useful session to help those individuals who wouldn’t naturally see themselves as “networkers” so that they can feel more positive when interacting with potential students and parents” concludes Sally.
The feedback from the College’s tutors and business professionals shows that the programme was a great success with high scores coming in from every session.
“I’ve met/dealt with people all my working career (30 years) and yet I went away with things to consider.”
“Well worth attending, good fun but instructive at the same time.”
“Very useful, fun, practical techniques that will benefit my teaching.”
“A thought provoking session and vital in our career given the importance of voice.”
“Much more useful/applicable than I had expected.”
Jon Formby concludes, “We were really excited to have a week long programme in place across all our centres as it was the first time we have been able to roll out a consistent programme and feel confident that all our tutors would be receiving high quality and beneficial training at an appropriate level all at the same time.”