Make them part of the Process

I work in Sampark Foundation as a Program Coordinator in Chhattisgarh team. My work entails meeting with teachers and officers on a regular basis. The beginning of this journey as a spark wasn’t as smooth as it is now. I never identified myself as a public speaker, it started in Raigarh district where I was supposed to deliver my first training with teachers. 
 
While walking towards the training hall a trail of thoughts was coming in my mind; how will I speak? What if a teacher asks a difficult question? Am I qualified enough?
 
I hesitatingly entered the training room, there were 26 teachers and I was supposed to train them on Sampark Smart Shala Math kit. As I started speaking, a teacher asked me about my educational qualifications. I timidly replied, “Ma’am, I have a Master’s degree in Arts”. She said, “I have a PhD in Mathematics. Why is it that you are training me and not the other way around”? 
 
I was taken a back, an ounce of confidence which I had was completely lost. I politely continued my training and she kept asking me questions in every few minutes. There were questions which I couldn’t answer properly. I was intimidated and thought this is going to be my last training ever. 
 
After sometime, a teacher from the other side of the room got up and came in front. She politely told the other teacher, “Ma’am we are here to learn about the innovative methods for our children and not to compete with each other”. She then asked me to continue the training. 
My self-esteem rose a little. I finished the training on a good note. After that day, I decided that instead of getting intimidated by those who know more than me I will make them part of the process. I started involving teachers in the training by taking their feedback on the concepts and by answering to their questions. 
 
I am glad that I didn’t adhere to my decision of not giving trainings anymore. 
 
Spark Mukesh, Chhattisgarh

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