Your Guide to Pulling off a Last-Minute Training Session

Picture this: you are going about your day and you realize it - that training session you agreed to give is just a few days away.

Whether you agreed to deliver it in advance and it got put on the backburner, or your supervisor dropped the last-minute responsibility on you, a group of trainees is expecting you to deliver an informative and engaging training session.

Does this sound familiar? To many consultants, life coaches, and Human Resources professionals, this is simply part of being a corporate trainer. And while it can be stressful, there are ways to fast-track your preparation and put on a successful last-minute training workshop.

By focusing on your objectives and prioritizing your tasks and time, you can provide effective corporate training on a tight deadline.

Below is our guide to pulling off an organized, credible training session with a less-than-ideal timeline:

Establish Your Priorities

When working with a short deadline to your training workshop, it is important to stay particularly focused on the big picture. Here are some questions to ask yourself when clarifying the big picture of your training session:

  • What do I want my trainees to have more clarity on with my training session?
  • What behavior am I trying to change in my trainees?
  • Who is my audience, and in what ways can I ensure my training resonates with them?

Take a moment to carefully consider each of the above points, and write your thoughts down. When you can answer these questions, you will have a better understanding of what you need to incorporate in your training, and even how you want to deliver it. By establishing your priorities for your training session in this way, you can focus on what matters most and prevent wasting time on things that don’t serve your training workshop.

Be sure to consistently refer to your set objectives as you speed through developing your training workshops.

Prepare Your Content

Can you imagine the stress of writing training content from scratch for a last-minute training session? Luckily, you don’t have to. If you want to deliver meaningful training, it is probably too late at this stage in the game to be writing your own content. With the many options for gathering quality training materials, your training content should not necessarily be written, but rather, assembled. And with our Workshop Kits, you can do just this.

Each of our training kits have training manuals with 12 modules, pre and post-tests, and assessments. They also include ice breakers, PowerPoint Slides, Quick Reference Sheets, and certificates.

Since the bulk of the work is done for you, our training kits are the perfect solution to a last-minute training workshop.

And while you don’t have to write your content from nothing, you definitely want to make some time to prepare and customize your training materials to ensure they match your voice as a trainer.

Our courseware packages offer you top-quality training materials that are customizable, user-friendly, educational, and fun. You simply need to prepare and deliver your training.

Our courseware packages are created in Microsoft Office and can be opened using any version of Word and PowerPoint, from 97 to 2010. This means that you can customize the content by adding your logo, changing the color scheme, and incorporating any of your organization’s branding guidelines.

Customizing your course is easy. To edit text, just click and type as you would with any document. This is particularly convenient if you want to add customized statistics for your region, special examples for your participants’ industry, or any other additional information. You can also use all of your word processor’s other features, including text formatting and editing tools (such as cutting and pasting).

Once you make all of your preparations, simply navigate to the Table of Contents, right-click, and click Update Field. You may see a dialog box; if so, click “Update entire table” and press OK.

When you make changes on your training content, don’t forget to also make them on your PowerPoint slides. This could also include custom visuals and infographics relevant to your industry.

If you are really looking to fast-track your training for a last-minute workshop, this is by far the easiest way to do it and save hours (and hours) of time.

Practice Delivery

Believe it or not, research says that the magic number of rehearsals you should do before a presentation is 10 (yup, you read that right).

Since we are short on time (and your training workshop is probably quite long), we are ditching that expectation, but you should keep it in mind when preparing for a training session where you have more time, and notice the difference.

But it is important you at least try to run through your training delivery once or twice. Whether it is alone, or with a trusted colleague, a run through – even a brief one - of your training session is well worth the time it will take. While you won’t be able to memorize what you’re going to say (and you shouldn’t), memorizing your opening lines can allow you to start strong to build trust with your trainees and boost your confidence for the rest of your workshop.

Furthermore, take some time to consider questions that may arise during your training session. Have some answers ready for any questions you may anticipate. If you pause to ask for questions and don’t get any, this would be a good time to bring up the ones you prepared to answer. You can transition this by simply saying “A question I am often asked when delivering this training is…” or “You might be wondering…”

When people ask questions during your training, make sure to repeat them and address the answer to the entire group so everyone can learn from it. And if you don’t know the answer to a question, don’t be afraid to simply say you aren’t sure but that you will get back to them.

 By positioning yourself to confidently answer questions and doing what you can to familiarize yourself with your training content, you will boost your credibility as a trainer by showing that you came prepared – even under a tight deadline.


Pulling together a last-minute training session is never ideal, but it’s not impossible. And working under pressure can actually make for great results. By prioritizing your focus, content preparation, and delivery, you can put on an effective corporate training session in a limited amount of time.

What are your tips and tricks for putting on a last-minute training session? Let us know in the comments below!

Posted by Katelyn Roy on

  • Tags: business skills training, business training, corporate training, courseware, delivering training, employee training, in-person training, Instructor-led training, last minute, Presentation Skills, Soft Skills Training, Successful Training, training, Training Industry, Training Materials, virtual training, workplace training

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    • This just happened to me last night…wish I had this resource yesterday. While I did not include all of the steps above, I was pretty close to it and now I see how I can improve my preparedness for the future- awesome guide

      Troy A. Burgher on

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