Development Checklist

3 min read






1. Attention-Grabbing

The workshop gains the attention of the participants with stimuli that catch and engage their brains.

2. Stated Objectives

Workshop informed participants of the purpose, goal, and why the facilitator is the best person to teach them.

3. Company Applicable

The workshop utilizes associations from existing knowledge and real-world problems.

4. Chunks

The workshop content was presented in easily consumable chunks that can be easily referenced as-needed.

5. Examples

The workshop provides examples of applying knowledge and learning from mistakes.

6. Assessment

The workshop provides an opportunity for participants to test understanding, commonly done through questions or polls.

7. Well-Organized (Fluid)

The workshop content flows and transitions well between topics.

Attention Grabbing

You want to immediately gain the attention of the participants with stimuli that catch and engage their brains.

People don't pay attention to boring things. They decide in the first 60 seconds if they are going to listen to you, and you will lose them every 10 minutes if you don't engage or trigger them in some way, such as humor, storytelling that triggers anxiety, a novel idea or thought-provoking questions, etc.  One neuroscience theory on why we are easily distracted is that using one area of our brain for prolonged periods depletes it from glucose, so we need to jump to other areas of our brain to compensate.

Workshop Objectives

Inform participants of the workshop purpose, goal and why you are the best person to teach them.

Have a slide to let your audience know what will be covered and what they should be able to accomplish after workshop completion.  Let them know when it is okay to ask questions and what authority you have on the topic that makes you qualified to teach them the topic.  Authority does not need to be that you published a book on the topic.  It could be a personal story of how you overcame a technical issue and this presentation is sharing your lessons learned. Personal stories that build empathy engage your audience and make the topic relatable which build associations in the brain to help retain the learnings.

Make it Applicable

Learning starts with real-world problems so apply as much as you can to Netflix.
Try to use associations from existing knowledge before introducing new knowledge and build on it. Retention of learning occurs most when the participant can associate the new information with previous experience.

Ask the audience “Who has done this before….” then dive into the better solution.
Show the audience a common error message and then dive into how to fix it.
When using example data, try to use relatable data sets that they may have seen before.

Chunk it

Deliver the content in easily consumable chunks that can be easily referenced later if-needed.

You chunked your content in your outline but you want to ensure those chunks translated well onto your slides. Also, as you review your slides you may identify sections of text that can be placed into the speaker notes but referenced as a single word or image in your slide.

Provide Examples

Provide real-world examples and/or guide them through the debugging process.

Guide participants with scenarios, and debugging issues together can be more impactful than showing them the correct way every time.  Sometimes how you came to the solution to the problem is more valuable than the solution itself.  It is giving your participants the tools they need to problem-solve future issues.


Provide participants the opportunity to test their own understanding of the ideas presented.

Engage participants with questions or anonymous polls to evaluate knowledge. If they do poorly or do not seem engaged, then it may not be the content, but an inability to maintain their attention and you may want to re-examine how the material is being presented.

Well-Organized (Fluid)

The workshop content flows and transitions well between topics.

If the presentation jumps back and forth between topics in a non-logical manner then you may cause cognitive overload and your participants will not retain as much as they would if it flowed intuitively.  It may also be difficult for them to find key ideas quickly if they need to reference the presentation later.