TRAINING TIP 16: Dealing with Latecomers

By Edwin Pauzer posted 02-13-2018 09:32


There will always be extenuating circumstances when people arrive late. In a uniformed agency it is easy to be strict about time, and demand explanations. If you find yourself training in a private industry or a non-uniformed environment, it will be an entirely different story.

Let’s look at the “entirely different story.”

    1.  Set up the room to minimize interruptions. 

    2.  Ensure that you start on time. If people see that you are starting late, they will soon get the message and start coming
          in late too. They will model you

    3.  Don’t take it personally if people arrive late. There could be a multitude of reasons other than not wanting to attend
         the training. 

   4.  Welcome the latecomers without demanding an explanation. 

   5.  Have extra materials ready for them when they arrive. If you don’t have an assistant to help you pass them out, ask a
        participant to help you. 

   6.   Disburse them when they arrive. Assign each one to sit at a table with early arrivals who can bring them up to speed.

   7.  Start out with “nice-to-know” information rather than the “must-knows.” This will save you from repeating it and
        wasting time.

   8.  Pair up early arrivals with late arrivals for the breaks, telling each one is responsible for getting the other back on time.

   9.  Try to bring the latecomer up to speed during a break. 

10.  Close the classroom door when the break is over. 

11.  If a participant is chronically late, speak to her in private and try to find out the reason for her tardiness. If the person
        has more pressing priorities, see if she can reschedule the training for a later date.