It wasn’t even my birthday

I started working in my current position in April of 2009.  For the most part, I was coaching new staff, post-training.  In June, I co-facilitated my first class, and I really enjoyed it.  My years as a poet, giving public readings, and my years teaching composition at university helped me immensely.

One thing I learned is that most trainers, like most writers, are quite shy.  We don’t like to be in the spotlight, but once there, something happens.  In my more poetic days, I thought of it as the goddess of poetry.  She inhabited me for a while and when I left the stage, she’d move on to the next wallflower.

Now I understand the phenomenon a little differently.  I let the passion for the subject I’m teaching take the reins.  When you love what you do, it isn’t hard to be dynamic, entertaining even.  I pour on the happy, sunshiny energy in public situations.

I got my first taste of Participant Centered Training in August, and then in December, became one of three trainers delivering systems training via NetMeeting to all of our staff in the province.  It was a grueling month of 3-hour session after 3-hour session, morning and afternoon, every day.  I’m surprised I didn’t get laryngitis.

Ultimately, that first year was just about getting acclimatized to the unit and my place in it.

In January and March of 2010, I co-facilitated a newly redesigned version of some of our operational training.  Of course, there was more coaching to do, a never-ending stream of it 🙂

Then, in May of 2010, I received a present: a SMART Board.  Our department received six of them; each delivered to a separate location.  To my knowledge, I was the only one to unpack the boxes, assemble the SMART Board, call IT to install the drivers and software, and give the dear thing a test run.

Basic functionality was all I had time to master, however, as other priorities emerged.  Involvement in a working group, the development of a brief introduction to the SMART Board for my colleagues, an in-person team meeting (I work on a virtual team), training in SharePoint, and preparation for and execution of three and a half months of intensive training kept me busy until the end of November.

When I finally had a little time, I returned to the SMART Board, registered the operating software, updated it, and learned a little bit about Notebook.  Then my hungry mind found something else to play with.

Have you received a work-related present, or a new toy that was a game-changer for you?  What was it?  How did it change your game?