What are the duties of a trainer? What is his function? What value does a trainer have for young people?
I have been an instructor in the training workshop for mechatronic engineers at TÜV Rheinland for exactly one year. In order to explain the duties of a trainer, I could now go over various paragraphs of the Vocational Training Act and write something about “acquiring the vocational ability to act and acquiring certain skills”. But there is so much more behind all that.
My teaching assignment – more than just specialist topics
The fact is: First and foremost, during the 3 ½-year training period, the trainer tries to convey the subject-specific topics to the trainee and to bring the company’s mission statement closer to him or her. But is that all there is to it? No. For me, a trainer has far more duties.
As an instructor I deal with many different kinds of people. We currently have ten trainees between 18 and 33 years old, with different backgrounds, cultures, ideologies, and values. My job is to prepare these young people for their future professional life. To make them understand what it means to be a working adult, to act independently and to show initiative. It is important to us to promote the ability to work in a team.
Trainer function: role model and supporter
For the trainee I am available as a contact person for all questions. Be it technical, professional or even private issues. Every day for three and a half years you see each other at work and interact together. Bad blood is absolutely out of place here.
It is important to me that my trainees appear confident and are not afraid or worried to ask me anything. Being close to the trainees is very important. A trainer should not lose his authority and should act as a role model, especially for young people.
Since I work as a full-time trainer, I also try to sit down with a trainee alone as often as possible and work on certain topics he or she has not understood. A trainer should be there for his trainees all around to keep motivation high and to make their transition into working life easier.
Addressing each one individually
A few weeks ago I helped one of our trainees to transport pieces of furniture to his home. We got us a transit, put everything away, and I drove us. I took the opportunity to talk to him in a private one-on-one conversation. Away from the working environment and the other trainees, I learned about his problems in training that he would not express during normal working hours.
Since I work with a large number of different people, I have to tune into each person’s personality individually in order to get through to them. Remember,in Cologne we say “Jede Jeck is anders”, meaning everyone is different.
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