Many organizations host topical internal training sessions for staff, usually with names like “Brown Bag Sessions,” “Lunch ‘n Learns” or “Bitesized Learning.” They’re generally short, informal sessions on a variety of topics ranging from job skill improvement and wellness to creativity and team building.

For the ultimate in Brown Bag programs, turn to the folks at Google who host the acclaimed Talks at Google. Don’t let the plain name fool you, they offer a rich tapestry of speakers and topics that range from educational and motivational to just plain interesting. They bill them as “The world’s most influential thinkers, creators, makers and doers all in one place. Talks at Google. Where great minds meet.” If you need inspiration for your own internal program — or if you’d just like to feed your own mind with some inspirational talks from fascinating people, you can see them all online at Talks at Google or subscribe to the YoutTube channel. This video offers a preview:

Most talks run from 30 to 60 minutes. You can search or filter them by topic or by author. The topics include:

  • Art & Culture
  • Authors
  • Business & Entrepreneurs
  • Chefs & Food
  • Economics
  • Entertainment
  • Environment
  • Fitness & Sports
  • Health & Wellbeing
  • History
  • Leaders
  • Politics
  • Science
  • Technology

OK, most of us don’t have the budget or the leverage that Google has to attract prominent, national leaders, thinkers, and celebrities, but you can tap into many local resources to put a fun program together. Here are some people you might tap into:

  • Internal topic experts
  • Consultants and vendors your company works with
  • Community leaders
  • Local college professors
  • Local authors
  • Experts in your industry
  • Your insurer or health care providers

Susan M. Heathfield of The Balance (formerly about.com) has written quite a few useful articles about various internal training methods, including the Brown Bag lunch variety. Here are a few of her articles:

Here are a few other how-tos that might help:

 

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Is your organization interested in bolstering its training program?

Learn about ESI’s Peak Performance Benefits, which include state-of-the-art training programs.

 

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