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Building a results-focused, transformational course

Vikrant Duggal
Vikrant Duggal
• 3 min read

How did I design the Consulting Club course?

Members love my course! I want to share how I developed it.

Consulting Club’s core program wasn’t always so amazing. But with the accolades of late I wanted to create some space to share my learnings in building not a skills-based course, but a results-focused, transformational course.

a results-focused, transformational course

I had some qualifications to make a course:

  • I had taken numerous skills and transformational programs.
  • I had presented and conducted sales trainings in the past.
  • I had been operating as an independent consulting and achieved $30K in monthly sales.

I did not have any formal authority that had deemed me a certified trainer.

I had taken numerous skills and transformational programs. I had presented and conducted sales trainings in the past. I had also been operating as an independent consulting and achieved $30K in monthly sales. I did not have any formal authority that had deemed me a certified trainer.

In my lifetime I’ve spent close to $200K of my own money on learning and developing. I’ve made poor investments and I’ve made great investments. Generally speaking there is a lot of bad transformation training out in the world. Plenty of skills-based training and arguable if it can actually help another person acquire the skill.

I didn’t enter course design without having invested in some growth myself. I feel it’s important for me to have done something before asking another person to do the same.

The Initial Failure

I designed a workshop for a client. Ten employees showed up for two days of training. I saw a 10% success rate. You might think, well company training generally sucks. And you would be right.

10% success rate...sucks

Here were my takeaways:

  • Do not ever train someone who has no skin in the game. There are very few employees who really take free education seriously. Most of them desire to check a box and say that they did it. You may have received some insight, but you have achieved no transformation.
  • Put the most powerful part of the material in the beginning. People are tired by the end. I discovered the first 2-3 hours matter that most. Additionally, it sets the tone and people know you’re dead serious!
  • Put any knowledge-related, or skills-related material at the backend
  • Engage the participate as much as possible in visual, auditory, and kinesthetic ways

Finding the Winning Formula

I ended up redesigning the workshop as a workshop for independent consultants. It just so happened to coincide with a request from a good friend of mine. I decided to only work with people were great at something so I created a set of 6 questions that would help me select the right people (this was key learning I had from my consulting practice: client selection matters more than anything else).

Then, I focused on the outcome. I wanted this individual to obtain their first client within 6-8 weeks (the average currently 3-6 weeks). For the outcome to be achieved I had to do two things:

  1. I had to create the spark to change behavior (success is a set of practices, not a set of skills). I read this book.
  2. Then I had to layer in the key knowledge, which I had in an order that would build and show the individual they themselves were progressing.

I also knew we wouldn’t achieve the desired success in two days so the impact of the program had to last longer than the two days - I tried to focus on 3 months of impact. I had to build momentum, generate excitement/enthusiasm/belief, and give them the transformational power to overcome inertia.

I had to...give them the...power to overcome inertia.

There is only one tool in our verbal toolbox as humans with the power to transform us, or others: questions. So I drafted over 100 questions that I could possibly use to drive people to their desired destination. I narrowed them down to 53.

There is...one tool in our verbal toolbox...with the power to transform...questions.

I created additional skills and move them outside the core course offering. They were still valuable, but I didn’t need to teach something people could read and refer back to (I now have this in audio format as well).

Conclusion

There is a growing group of course creators and I wanted to share my learnings over the last 3 years having built and operator a live in-person course and one that now lives online and self-paced. If you have a superpower to help others grow and flourish you may want to consider the possibilities of building, or improving your own course to deliver the maximum impact it can.

Consulting