“It Won't Work!”

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Occasionally, Certified Instructors come across the comment, “It won't work!” from participants who disagree with methods in CPI’s training programs. There are a variety of reasons that these comments come forward. It could be that the participant has tried the method once and was unsuccessful. Perhaps they have seen others try it and fail. Maybe they got a different result than the one they anticipated. Finally, they may simply have doubts.

While there are no guarantees that any method from any program will work, lack of understanding or desire upon the employee could lead them to conclude that the method, indeed, does not work. This is an absolute, black-and-white perspective that does not lend itself to the realities of crisis intervention. The following are some ways to manage this type of perspective from participants. 

Try again. Just because something doesn't work once doesn't mean it won't work if attempted again. The old adage of “If at first you don't succeed, try, try again” really comes into play here.

Try it differently. Sometimes, a simple change in implementation of the method could change the result. This is a time where the Certified Instructor could ask the participant what they could do differently to get the desired result.

Have someone else try it. Is it simply a matter of the person who tried it lacking the skills or the rapport to make the method successful? Where one employee finds defeat, another finds success.

Try it with a different client/student/patient. Just because it didn't work with one person in your care doesn't mean it won't work with another. Students and care receivers are unique and respond differently to interventions.

Try it with a team approach. Many interventions work better when we use our colleagues and coworkers with the intervention. Teams can provide a more thorough, professional method.

Try it in conjunction with other methods. Often times, one method in and of itself is not nearly as effective as trying it in combination with other techniques.

Hearing that “it won't work” can be frustrating for any Certified Instructor. The aforementioned approaches could help you deal with this type of challenge within your trainings. Please provide other techniques you’ve found to be helpful or think could be helpful. Thank you!

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About the Author

“Define success by the degree of dullness in your day. A boring day is an indication that you’ve prevented and handled situations so well that it never made the evening news. That’s a good day!”