Frequently Asked Questions
What is Next Level?
Next Level Trainings provides experiential leadership programs that support people in unlocking their passion, power, and purpose. Developed using positive psychology and behavioral science, our emotional intelligence trainings are proven to make substantial and lasting impacts on graduates’ personal and professional lives while also improving our local communities.
How did Next Level Trainings start?
Founded in 2014, Next Level Trainings was started as a way to build community, create an impact, and develop leadership. Its success is a testament to the extraordinary students who have used its platform to reach the next level in their own lives.
The founders were originally invited to participate in a similar training on the west coast. Inspired by the value they created for themselves and also witnessing others experiencing extraordinary results, the founders invited renowned leadership trainers and life-coaches, such as Chris Lee and Michael Strasner, to launch their own program in Ohio.
What are the core curriculum trainings?
Students begin with the Discovery Training to scratch the surface of leadership and identify what is holding them back from living their best life as their best self.
Once complete, students move on to the Breakthrough Training to create freedom from old habits and thought processes that are getting in the way of those freedoms.
The final stage of the core curriculum is the Vision and Impact Program (VIP) to utilize all tools learned from earlier trainings and applying them to everyday life. As a capstone, each VIP team also completes a large-scale community service project designed to have a massive impact in the world.
Can I skip Discovery and go straight to Breakthrough or VIP?
The core curriculum trainings are sequential and cannot be taken out of order. The trainings build on one another and are cumulative in nature. The trainings are to be taken in the following order:
Discovery → Breakthrough → VIP
Next Level Trainings offers a variety of additional workshops such as Grace, Relationships, Warriors Council: Grace Revealed, and more. Some workshops do require core curriculum trainings as prerequisites. To learn more, go to the page for the specific workshop page of interest.
What will I learn in the trainings?
The trainings are experiential in nature and focus on practical skills, leadership principles, and conceptual information with strong focuses on developing emotional intelligence (EQ), stress-management skills, integrity, resilience, responsibility, and leadership.
The purpose of the trainings is to create extraordinary results in your life: in relationships, confidence, career, finances, health, personal fulfillment, and leadership. The curriculum of the trainings accomplishes this by creating breakthroughs in self-awareness, uncovering blind spots that hold us back, and then providing tools to break through these barriers to success.
Leadership is not only for people in positions of authority or management. Everyone has the potential to be a leader in their lives. This looks like both living their own lives to their greatest potential and supporting those around them into living theirs.
What is Emotional Intelligence (EQ)?
EQ is the ability to motivate yourself to take actions that you determine will serve your vision and assist you in reaching your goals. It is the ability to be joyful regardless of your circumstances. It is the ability to manage stress, connect with others’ feelings and to understand what motivates them. It is the ability to respond to situations instead of reacting to allow for intentional, conscious choices that are more likely to lead to desired outcomes in life.
EQ has been identified by organizations such as Harvard as being the number one contributing factor to success. It is regarded as more important than IQ, resources, contacts, or other environmental factors. Our trainings develop these skills at the same time delivering intuitive, simple to understand principles to implement as leadership in life.
What is experiential education?
Traditional schools specialize in instructional education: a teacher at the front of the room conveying conceptual information relying primarily on lecture. This is an effective method for teaching knowledge, but is not typically as effective at developing practical skills and wisdom that are obtained through experience and practice.
Experiential education bridges the gap from concept to practice. Think of the difference between reading about riding a bike versus actually riding one. Emotional intelligence and leadership are skills often treated as conceptual topics when, realistically, to fully develop them as functional tools requires putting the ideas into motion.
Our trainings utilize a series of dynamic exercises in order to develop various leadership skills and traits. Exercises include one-on-one sharing, small group interactions, games, and guided visualizations. The trainings are extremely engaging and the time passes very quickly. These activities require some physical movement and active participation.
Why are people so passionate about Next Level?
People love their favorite sports teams (Go Bucks! Go Eagles!). When avid sports fans meet other fans of the same team, it doesn’t matter that they may be strangers, friends, or family; there is a shared enthusiasm and camaraderie. This level of passion is seen in many activities with a cult-like following such as running, crossfit, yoga, certain diets, Rocky Horror Picture Show, student organizations, and other popular trends.
The environment is similar within the Next Level alumni network. We are each other’s fans and have created a bond that makes it easy to show excitement about each other's accomplishments and successes. As a result, they then enjoy sharing the trainings and experience with others.
Our participants are excited because they want to see people they care about enjoy what Next Level Trainings has to offer. There is no other reward, financial or otherwise, for enrolling someone in one of our trainings.
Who are the trainings for?
People of all backgrounds, genders, orientations, education levels, ethnicities, and religions
People who want to improve themselves
People who are successful but burnt out or have lost their passion
People with specific goals they are committed to achieving
People looking to improve specific areas of their lives
People looking to clarify a vision for their lives
People looking to develop themselves as leaders in their families and community
People looking to develop their influence
People who are already successful and looking for the next level in their life
I have a history of alcoholism/substance abuse. Can I attend the trainings?
We have had many students complete this program successfully that have a history of alcoholism and/or substance abuse. However, Next Level Trainings is not designed for treating addiction in any way, shape or form.
For those currently battling addiction or recently in recovery, it is important to achieve sobriety prior to participation in the trainings. A minimum of 6 months of sobriety is required, and it is recommended that the student get support from their sponsors.
All student must be sober for the entire duration of the training weekends. Events hosted by Next Level Trainings are drug and alcohol free.
I have a history of mental illness or an emotional disorder. Can I attend the trainings?
The health of our participants is our number one concern. We are a coaching organization, not a therapeutic practice, and we rely on our participants to accurately disclose any health conditions which may contradict participation. The trainings are rigorous and at times emotionally uncomfortable and challenging, and therefore may not be suitable for those with a history of, or currently undergoing treatment for, mental illness.
To ensure everyone’s health and safety, all participants must complete a confidential health questionnaire prior to attending. Click here to see a sample of the questionnaire. You may be required to get a waiver signed by a medical professional attesting to the safety of your participation.
Do employers give time off or pay for the trainings?
Many employers are supportive of participation by their employees in leadership development programs. It makes sense! We offer a Corporate Sponsorship Letter for students looking to request financial support from their employer as well as requesting days off without utilizing vacation or personal days. Please contact our office for a copy of this letter.
Can I get continuing education credit for attending?
At this time, this training does not qualify for professional continuing education credits.
Does Next Level Trainings offer scholarships?
Next Level offers one scholarship in memory of Tracy Austin designated specifically for students with a current or former cancer diagnosis and caretakers of those with cancer. Read more about the scholarship opportunity here.
Does Next Level Trainings offer corporate discounts or trainings?
We can offer group rates for teams of 5 or more. We also design custom programs for corporations looking to create stronger teams in their workforce. Contact us if you are interested to learn more.
What's the refund/transfer policy?
We have a no-refund Tuition Policy. You can, however, transfer your deposit to a future training of the same type by calling the office. You can also transfer a balance to another student for an equivalent training for a fee of $30.
Can I use my phone during the training?
All trainings and workshops conducted by Next Level Trainings are created to be immersive and experiential. This requires you to be 100% present in the room and the exercises you are participating in. In the training room, cell phones are turned off and put to the side. There are breaks at least every 3 hours on training days. You can use your phone during these breaks. There is always someone in the office and an emergency number you can give to your family during training hours to get in touch with you in case of an emergency.
Can I leave early or show up late?
These trainings are cumulative in nature and missing parts of them would inhibit your ability to follow along and create the maximum value. Like missing a major part of a movie, you would be confused when you came back. It is important that you attend all parts of the trainings on all days. If you are coming from out of town, please make your travel arrangements accordingly.
I'm not local. Where can I stay?
People have attended the trainings from over 25 states and several countries, including Russia, Italy, France, and Germany. We have centers in Columbus and Philadelphia. In Columbus, the Trainings are primarily held at the Epicenter Event Space which is nearby to many hotels, shops, and restaurants. Please find out about all local travel needs at our Travel & Accommodations page. In Philadelphia, the trainings are held at several different conference centers. Check your specific training for details about the venue.
What should I bring with me?
When you enroll in a training, you will receive an email from our office letting you know details about what to expect as well as logistical details. However, we always recommend bringing layered clothing, a bottle of water, snacks, any required medications, and an open mind to every training.
I'm enrolled in a training with my friend/family member. Can we pair up and work together during the weekend(s)?
We often have family members (including spouses) or friends attend trainings together. It is an incredible activity to share with someone, and almost invariably draws people closer. While you are permitted to attend the same training class with loved ones, in the training process you will be directed to work with people you do not know prior to the training.
Is this a religiously-based program?
No. The curriculum for this leadership training is not rooted in any religion nor does it have religious elements included in the training. We welcome students of all denominations, belief systems, and religious and non-religious backgrounds. The feedback we invariably receive from people of various faiths that have participated, is that this work deepened their faith. Next Level Trainings is truly a family-oriented organization. Our events are all alcohol and drug free and children are welcome to many functions.