In today’s fast-paced, technically savvy world, our convenience is at the tips of our fingers no matter where we are or what our occupations are. When we need a ride, we hit the “Uber” app and get one within minutes. When we find out we’re out of milk, we utilize a delivery service. When we have to submit the proposal for our next business venture (that is due in the next five minutes) we utilize our mobile device “office” applications. Though we all have benefited from these technical advances in various ways, we cannot allow our emergency preparedness training to succumb to a simple push of a button. Conducting online training, webinars or some other fashion of e-learning can ultimately threaten our good intended training objectives. There are three areas that, if not given special attention, can make up the “Training Triad” threat in our emergency preparedness efforts; time, type and quality.
Time: Training is something we need to invest our time in as much as possible because time is something we can never get back. Unfortunately, we take the most expedient approach to our training as possible. I get it, it is a cost-effective way of “checking the box” and requires little to no staffing to get it done. It could be a place of worship that sees it as not having the staff or volunteers necessary to accomplish the task. A school administrator that views it as an obstacle when juggling “snow days” with required professional development training. Or a healthcare facility that finds themselves all too busy to conduct such training. Regardless, we tend to choose the “quick and convenient” route with emergency preparedness training. With that in mind, we move on to the second part of the training triad threat- Type
Type: As technology has it, we all too often decide to do some type of “on-line” course for our staff. The instructions read “After watching the short video, click the “next” button to advance”. Depending on what pressing issues there are in our lives will decide whether we actually watch the video, simply click the “next” button while we get a cup of coffee, or whip out that “machine gun” style finger to advance through that 30-minute course in 10-minutes. Where is the retention of the life-saving skills in that? This brings me to the third part of the training triad threat- Quality
Quality: We frequently lean towards the person who we know carries a weapon in the congregation to teach our “weapons safety” class to our church or to our supervisor at the workplace to conduct our emergency “response” drills because he/she had leadership training and is a “supervisor”. How can we even quantify our training and call it “reliable” when put in these situations where, in most cases, Google is the experienced vendor of the information that we seek?
We must consider our options with the time we have by dividing our training into phases- Phase I: threat assessments, Phase II: tabletop discussions and Phase III: scenario-based hands-on training. To establish that procedural memory and gain the retention needed in a crisis event there is no substitute for reality-based hands-on training. Experienced Instructors will tell you, participants learn and retain the information better when, after being instructed on how to perform a task, the participants get to practice performing that task in the same setting. The training provider needs to be certified while presenting materials that are compliant in three areas:
- Expresses best practices.
Following this regime will help you from falling into the “Training Triad” threat. I conclude with this question- Would you watch a video on “how to swim” and have the confidence to jump into the water for the first time?
BSR/Summit Point Training Center has built its legacy on providing such reality-based training in a manner that precedes no other. Since the late 70’s, BSR/Summit Point Training Center has been providing emergency preparedness training to civilians, military, law enforcement and governmental clients and has built their reputation under the mantra of “Training at the Limit”. BSR/Summit Point Training Center has provided training in the areas of Active Shooter Response (BECON), Firearms (pistol/rifle Basic and Advanced), Driving (basic, intermediate and advanced), Combatives (hand-to-hand offensive techniques) and many more courses that teach the participant(s) to be situationally aware and proactive instead of surprised and reactive.
- Nathan Harmon