News report originally published in Training Journal May 2012

Celine Jacques, Principle Psychologist at CAPP, gave an overview of using positive psychology to understand what makes an “ordinary being flourish and succeed in normal life”. Jacques spoke of “flow”, being so engrossed in an activity that there is a loss of time and self-consciousness, and how a person “performs and learns to the best of their ability” in this state.

Myths of the brain were debunked beautifully by neuroscientist Trish Riddell, the most popular being “it’s all downhill after 60”, where Riddell highlighted that “the brain is still perfectly capable of learning, if you think you’re too old to learn, it’s in your head but not your brain!”

A lively debate was had around Clara Seeger’s work of using David Rock’s SCARF model for social drivers of behaviour “to avoid feeling of threat in today’s corporate world” that she uses in coaching, specifically in the banking area to create a balance between “money and meaning”. There was also insight into the social brain, with Seeger imparting that “the brain doesn’t distinguish social versus physical, exclusion from a group is still pain”.

“Coaching with EASE” is a model developed by EDF Energy Senior Training and Development specialist Phil Ball. Ball spoke passionately about using the model to create a coaching culture and of the success with Transactional Analysis and scripts, or beliefs, that we all hold. “Often people are struggling at work because of a limiting script”.

Kaizen Training’s Kimberley Hare delivered a rousing and powerfully creative session aimed at practitioners to enable them to create training that is “fast, fun, fit for purpose and sticky” and advised to be “obsessed to apply back to work place or life” in training. Hare practiced what she preached, making sure that “70% of the time the learner is doing something different to them listening to the trainer”.

Chief Executive for the Campaign for Learning, Tricia Hartley reminded of Learning At Work Day in May and that events in many companies take place all around the year. The link between educating the young child, young adult and the working professional was made clear and Hartley echoed the sentiment of the day by saying “absolute key and underpinning everything we’ve talked about today is responsibility. If the trainer can step back – it’s about giving the gift of responsibility”.

Jo Cook