Over the years, it has become clear to me that the groups of students I like best are also the ones who learn the best: when I am at my most real, most energetic and most open, then those groups of students learn best. When I am less giving of myself, my students learn less well. Consequently, I have become interested in how my work as a psychotherapist, in which the relationship is key, can inform my work as a trainer. I have realised that one of the most effective tools we have in teaching is ourselves – our personality, our imagination, our humour. When I can establish a relationship with a group, as with a client, I am more effective. I call this the effective teaching alliance. This workshop discusses the importance of the teaching alliance, and offers a simple theoretical tool. This is the relationship quadrant, which is adapted from a model first developed by Ernst (1971). I will use it to explain how we might develop and use the relationship to be more effective trainers. This paper also draws on the work of Irving Yalom and Chip and Dan Heath
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