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02.08.20

How to become a digital coach and where to find one for synchronous online learning?

Where do you find an online coach and what competencies he or she must possess? Answers to these questions can be found in the article.
How to become a digital coach and where to find one for synchronous online learning?

Online learning goes back a long way. It takes many forms, including pre-recorded video lessons, video footage of offline lessons, training sessions, and lectures, as well as the synchronous learning format known as webinars.

Students tend to enjoy listening to a video lesson much more than reading a whole book. Besides, newly produced videos can provide more relevant material compared to paper versions. In our ever-changing world, the information given in books sometimes gets outdated even before the release.

Webinars and Live Streams

Webinars and live streams offer to obtain not just up-to-date, but also real-time information. The main advantage of synchronous formats is that they bring students together and enable them to immediately respond to the information received through feedbacks and interpersonal communication. Over the past few years, numerous webinar platforms have emerged: VirtualRoom, Webinar.ru, DreamStudy, Webex, Zoom, ClickMeeting, GoToMeeting, and others. The turnkey solutions take care of all the processes including registration, invitations, notifications, video speeches, presentations, and attendee chats.

The technology can completely replace traditional offline lectures, gathering people from all over the world and allowing to ask direct questions to the speaker, something that is not possible for conventional events.

In fact, YouTube, Vimeo, Facebook, and other live streams can bring together even more viewers than any webinar platform. Unlike online learning services, they also ensure better broadcasting and video quality.

Still, delivering online webinars and live streams takes more than just good public speaking and lecture-making skills. Performing on a virtual stage is not the same as in the physical auditorium, not to mention a number of technical issues to be addressed as well.

Once we realized the inadequacy of qualified specialists, we at ManGO! Games decided to train them by ourselves. First, we identified a digital coach's key competencies to determine the candidates' level of expertise and put together a training program.

Digital coach competencies

A digital coach has to possess the following four groups of competencies at once:

  • Technical.
  • Methodological.
  • Coaching.
  • Organizational.

Technical competencies refer to mastery of the major online training platforms: Zoom, Skype for business, MS teams, Google Hangouts, WebEx. You may focus solely on the platform already employed by your company, but we believe a person who calls himself a digital coach must be proficient in at least the most popular ones.

Other obligatory requirements for a digital coach include access to interactive platforms, a team of facilitators and administrators, and the ability to deliver an online training session without third-party support.

A digital coach must also have a properly equipped workplace and his or her own professional hardware: a camera, lighting, and multiple monitors.

As for methodological competencies, these include client requirements gathering, definition of the training goal, and detailed elaboration of the training scenario. Online training assumes switching between different platforms and tools, as well as functional areas within the chosen training software.

The next vital task for a digital coach is choosing the right exercises and materials and arranging them in a logical sequence. It is also important to ensure the content's consistency with the goals and objectives of the training. Apart from this, a digital coach must create an online training design that would be in harmony with the alternation of various activities.

Also, a digital coach should have some knowledge about mechanisms for evaluating online training efficiency.

The coaching competencies of a digital coach mainly concern the ability to manage the attention and performance of the training participants while maintaining energy and group dynamics along the way.

A digital coach is also expected to adjust the complexity of material presentation to the group level without distorting the essence. In their work, he or she are welcomed to use different online tools, such as interactive whiteboards, online voting and vote-counting systems, mini games, Zoom Rooms, etc.

Digital coaches also need to possess trust-building along with time- and change-management skills. They have to be great speakers experienced with corporate audiences. When needed, they must be able to fine-tune the original training scenario with no loss of effectiveness, hold post-training refresher sessions - coaching sessions, experience-sharing sessions, etc.

Organizational competencies are about planning and organizing preparatory procedures before the training. A digital coach takes care of invitations, registration instructions, and narrated presentations. He or she also might have to accompany a potential student to register for the event and ensure its successful conduct.

To master all of the aforementioned skills, you are invited to take the ManGO! Games Digital Coaching Course, designed to re-train aspiring ones with previous experience in offline coaching.

If you are looking for an online coach in an attempt to digitize your offline training sessions, please keep in mind the list of competencies outlined above.

So far, the market lacks or nearly lacks qualified specialists willing to adapt to free platforms and corporate training software. Not everyone can design a new course or modify a ready-made one, arrange the entire preparation procedure, and deliver training without any help. It is hard to find a person familiar with the best interactive communication tools to save the company from unnecessary expenses for various services and platforms.

In other words, the market is in desperate need of professionals to translate corporate training into an online format, to organize and conduct it by using such means to avoid undue costs. And we are in desperate need of students. Out of 180 entrants, only eight have completed their studies.

There are no turnkey training courses to teach digital coaches all of the listed competencies yet. However, judging by market demand, they may appear any time soon.

You are most welcome!

What ManGO! Games has to offer is a digital coaching program along with our teaching background and expertise in conducting online training courses. You may find our experience useful, too. If you have any questions or comments or would like to get help or consultation, please fill out the form below. If you want to stay tuned to relevant news and be first to know about ManGO! Games upcoming events, don't forget to subscribe to our newsletter at the bottom of this page.

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