Cowell, LLC

Technical Training

Chris Cowell on a bench

Painless technical training
for less-technical people

email envelope
phone 503-309-2716

Training Approach

I specialize in training non-technical or less-technical people working for companies that expect some technical knowledge. This includes writers, UI/UX, sales and marketing, product owners, project managers, HR, and many other non-technical departments of tech companies.

I teach in a humane, non-intimidating way using patience, humor, and empathy, because I know that technical training can be scary or overwhelming for folks without technical backgrounds. I try hard to reduce fear or impostor syndrome in my students. If they ever feel their grasp of the material slipping, I change direction, pace, or teaching techniques until I find a way of explaining things that works for them.

I cover the most relevant part of each technical topic, in order not to swamp students in details they’ll never use. This is based on the observation that experienced techies deliberately and successfully spend most of their time using only a small subset of any technology, language, or process. Carefully focused training lets students immediately use what they’ve learned without getting bogged down in hard-to-memorize, low-value technical details.

My students learn a little, do a little, and teach a little. After I explain a concept, students can build their understanding by practicing with hands-on exercises. Because teaching is the best way to learn, I often ask them to teach concepts back to me. Combining these three approaches cements understanding better than simply listening to a lecture ever could.

1-on-1 training tends to be the most successful format. Teaching groups of 8 students or fewer is almost as effective, though usually goes more slowly. Depending on your training goals, I can usually give larger-group training if the other formats aren’t practical.