You've heard of "seminars" and the web. Put 'em together and what do you get? "Webinars!"
But what the heck is a webinar?
Webinars are a relatively new and exciting way to train you and your employees on just about any subject. All that's required is an internet connection and a phone. They are normally presented with a live instructor delivering the course; students see the instructor's screen and can hear his or her voice, and can ask questions just like in a real classroom.
You get the convenience of taking a class from your home office - no dressing up and fighting traffic and all the hassle that entails - plus webinars can be more cost-effective than regular classroom training. All in all, they are a terrific new way to take classes!
So what's the down-side?
Even though we've come a long way with technology, sometimes webinar software is spotty - audio connections are sometimes challenging, and occasionally students must log out and log back in to fix little issues.
And by far the main drawback is the lack of face-to-face interaction with the instructor. Even though students can ask questions directly of the instructor, or type them in using a chat interface, there's just nothing like actually being there with the teacher.
As an instructor myself, my main challenge is making sure my webinar students are engaged and following the presentation.
With those caveats, I can still recommend webinars as a great new way to learn. They are far better than static videos - students can still interact with the instructor - and they have a lot going for them in terms of convenience and costing.
For these reasons, we will now begin offering webinars as well as continue to provide quality live classroom training.
Let me know your thoughts in the comments section below, and thanks for reading.