Beyond Execution

Making a difference in project management by training, speaking and writing


My Biggest Challange as a Trainer - Immediate Perception

Posted by beyondexecution on November 10, 2011 at 10:20 AM

Yesterday I presented a one day course on Conflict Resolution at the PMI Saskatchewan Professional Development Conference (PDC). As I was being introduced at the start of the day, the room assistant said as part of his opening: "and this young gentleman will be presenting..."


I cringed internally. Even though I have over 15 years of experience in project management across multiple industries, I don't look it. Part of this is due to me being of Asian descent - we are notorious for looking younger than we are. Part of it is also the image of what we think a project management trainer looks like. The typical project management trainer has over 20+ years of experience, may be retired, and certainly has a lot of grey hair to prove it. I only have a few sprinkles of grey. And part of it is that I started in project management early in my career, which for my "cohort" is a bit unusual.


Did this affect my delivery? Not at all; once I get going I concentrate on the teaching. Did it affect how others perceive me? It's hard to say. It's difficult enough as it is to build rapport in a one day course, let alone the topic content being very heavy on theory. When I teach a 2-5 day course, my PM experience has a better chance of coming through.


In the end I was very happy with my performance - I felt I did my best in preparation, offering relevant and recent examples and ultimately the delivery.

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Reply James Smith
6:57 AM on November 15, 2022