Train the Trainer

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Presentation Mastery

Use the AIDA Formula in Developing Your Presentation

AIDA is one of the core elements of the Instructional Design module in our Train the Trainer Bootcamp. AIDA is an acronym based on the names of the four major steps into which a presentation or segment of a training program can be divided.


At the beginning of any presentation, you must get the attention of the group. One of the most obvious ways is to ask a question. Easy question with obvious answers helps. For example, “How are you?”

Members of your audience may be preoccupied with their own conversations; when you solicit an answer to a question, you break through that preoccupation and gain their attention.

You can further build on it. If for example, you were running a program on leadership, you might ask a group of managers, “What makes leadership so challenging?” Or, to begin a presentation about budgeting, you might ask, “What kinds of problems do people encounter when they don’t handle money well?”

As your participants begin responding, the side conversations will stop. You can then record participant responses on a flip chart.

The idea is to break through preoccupation, gain favorable attention, involve your audience.


Here’s where you the most important domain – “What’s in it for me?”

Every person to whom we will ever make a presentation is tuned to the radio station WII-FM? As we gather the information we want to present and as we recognize that there are things we want our audience to know, feel, and do as a result of our presentation, we also have to determine how each participant will benefit from knowing what we want them to know, feeling what we want them to feel, doing what we want them to do.

This is perhaps THE MOST IMPORTANT aspect to consider when presenting to an adult audience.


In the desired step, we begin to share the content, the practical how-to’s, that we suggested were forthcoming in the attention and interest steps.

Here’s where we offer the means toward the end results. How can I solve the problem, close more sales, make more effective decisions, appraise performance more effectively, train more creatively? These questions are explored in the desired step.

Sadly, many trainers try to jump directly to this step, and that practically destroys the worth of this step.


This final step is based on your asking the group, “What actions are you going to take? What did you learn, and how are you going to put your learning into practice?” Ideally, their feedback will indicate to you that training has provided a new, more effective way to do something and that they’re willing to give it a try.

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