Evaluation sheets for internal training?

We’ll be running quite a massive series of internal developer trainings in the next months, and in a planning meeting, I got into a short but heated opinion exchanges about whether we should hand out evaluation sheets after the sessions or not. I was against it. And now I wonder if I’m right.

Sessions will be held by members of the development team, the audience are developers too; there should be two dozens of people. There’s going to be one or two repetitions of the sessions.

Pro evaluation sheets:

  • The speaker gets feedback on how he was doing. This helps her/him to improve both the session (slides, script, timing) and presentation skills.
  • Participants feel more involved. Maybe they can even vent away some frustration and feel better.

Contra evaluation sheets: (you might notice, I’m biased towards this side of the argument. Hence the longer and more arguments. Which does not make it right per se.)

  • I don’t like filling them out, so I presume nobody does. I would not expect an outrageously high return rate. Given that you only get a few data points (there are 12 participants in total), what’s the validity?
  • The speakers are just developers; teaching groups is an exception from their day job. Everyone will give their session maybe two times. So even if you get a very clear indication of things you could improve, there’ not that much opportunity.
  • Designing a questionnaire, distribution of sheets, and evaluation are all tasks that take their time – a scarce resource that I feel could be of some use elsewhere.

In the end, I still think it’s just not worth the effort.

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About

Christian is a software architect/developer. He lives in Germany, reads a lot, and likes cycling.

Posted in Team
One comment on “Evaluation sheets for internal training?
  1. [...] evaluation and meetings I got some quite passionate feedback on my latest frowning on capturing feedback for internal trainings. In short, the reaction was that there are some obvious advantages to gain in capturing feedback, [...]

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