Dealing with Difficult behaviour - a management training course

Mastering Difficult Conversations


Develop Your Leadership

Learn how to handle challenging behaviour, difficult situations and awkward relationships in the workplace.

Improve Your Skills

Learn to handle aggression in a professional manner using practical emotional intelligence strategies.

Build Your Confidence

Developing crucial skills for getting the best out of others, by practicing over and over until you achieve your goals.

Refine your communication skills by learning to harness your emotional intelligence with one of the UK's most acclaimed management training courses.

Why Choose This Training?

More Than Just A Course Of Lectures

What gets in the way of developing and holding on to new communication skills are old habits of thinking and speaking. Even if the advice is very good the reason why it rarely sticks are the mental habits people inevitably revert to, especially under pressure.

Unlearning those old habits and internalising a more effective and lasting approach to communication needs more than a short course of lectures on how to do it.

What Makes This Training Stand Out?

What makes this training stand out is the exceptional support through one-to-one coaching sessions and continuous feedback. Changing behaviour is not an easy task as old habits are hard to break.

With a 40-year track record we can help you cultivate practical skills, and build your confidence to so you can successfully navigate real-world challenges, ensuring lasting behavioural improvements.


Join thousands of participants getting results

"What I love about this course is that I didn't just learn about the topic, this course is about ME.  I'm confident I can reliably use my new skills, even when under pressure".

5 stars

A Project Manager At A Tech Company

"A lesson for life! The power of effective communication is incredible when one masters the skills "listening with empathy" and "speaking assertively"

5 stars

A Project Quality Engineer

Clients We Have Worked With

Well-known companies who have used this course again and again, over many years

  • Amgen 3
  • BBC
  • aunt bessies
  • Cargill 2
  • Heinz Logo 3
  • Civil service
  • NHS 2
  • Kelloggs Logo 2
  • IGT
  • JM 4 copy
  • Schweppes 3 logo
  • Castrol 3
  • Dewhirst 2
  • avon logo png
  • Nestle Logo
  • RSPB Logo 2022
  • Shell
  • UNHCR 3
  • unilever 2
  • BP 2
  • FBN 2

Course Summary

Training Objectives

This course is designed to help you develop your skills to confidently handle difficult people and situations. You will learn how to manage stress and build more productive relationships with colleagues, even those with challenging behaviour. With these new strategies, you will have the confidence to constructively manage difficult people and situations in a professional manner.

Develop Your Emotional Intelligence

You will learn a set of powerful emotional intelligence communication techniques so that you can manage difficult conversations, handle challenging situations, build relationships and set firm boundaries.

Transferable Skills

The goal of this training is to equip you with the tools they need to build strong, lasting relationships in your professional life, although because these skills are so transferable many clients report vast improvements in their personal relationships as well.

Develop Skills

This is a skills development rather than just a theoretical programme, so the emphasis throughout will be on you taking turn after turn, practising your skills, while receiving feedback and coaching about your effect on others.

Repeated Practice and Feedback

In your coaching sessions you will be helped to practise dealing with the kinds of situation you find challenging, again and again, until you are confident you can do it successfully.

Video Analysis

We'll combine practical, hands-on experience with video replay and analysis and discussion of the principles involved to help you gain both skills and understanding. Special attention is paid to your individual training needs, so you can practise your skills in real-life situations that you have to handle at work.

Sustained Change

That's why as well as your place in a small group, this training includes a generous amount of private and confidential one-to-one coaching sessions online, spread over several months, ensuring an exceptional level of support. This will ensure the changes you make are sustained over a longer period of time and any obstacles are overcome. Choose between online training available worldwide, or in-person face-to-face courses in the UK.

Course Dates and Price

For a list of upcoming course dates (for online coaching and face-to-face training), the locations of the next 3-day public courses in the UK and pricing Click here.

Free Initial Session

This initial coaching session serves as an introduction to the "Skills with People" course, allowing you to understand the course's relevance and effectiveness for your specific needs before committing to it.

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Now by involving people he takes them with him

What Makes This Training Course So Effective?

Leading Through Conflict

For over 40 years we have specialised in training managers and professionals to become more confident and competant at dealing with difficult behaviour. We can help you develop the skills and perspectives you need to effectively manage difficult behaviors, communicate with and manage challenging individuals, and lead with confidence and success. Here's how;-

Your training is designed with your particular needs and challenges in mind. This means that rather than a bland or generic syllabus we will address the specific types of difficult behavior that you face and provid practical solutions and strategies for managing those behaviors effectively. You'll be able to immediately apply what you have learned in your day-to-day work.

Your training is led by an experienced trainer who has a deep understanding of this subject. They'll effectively convey knowledge and insights to you and help you develop new skills and perspectives. He'll facilitate interactive and engaging discussions and activities, so that you'll have opportunities to practice what you have learned and receive feedback.

Your training will be structured in a way that makes learning fun and enjoyable. This means using a variety of teaching methods, such as lectures, case studies, role-plays, group discussions and one-to-one coaching. Your trainer is experienced at creating an immersive learning experience. The time will fly by. You will also have ample opportunities to reflect on your experience and apply what they have learned in real-world scenarios, rather than generic templates.

This course is practical-oriented rather than just theoretical. This means your training is focused on giving you practical skills to apply in both your work and home relationships. You'll gain useful tools, strategies, and techniques to help you manage difficult behaviors effectively. Rather than just theoretical knowledge, you'll be able to immediately use the skills you learn in your daily life.

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She now feels more confident in tackling people

Might This Course Be Right For You?

Might your need to be better at dealing with difficult or challenging behaviour be met here?

Yes, if some of the following are true:

  • You need to learn to handle difficult or challenging behaviour in the workplace?
  • You spend a lot of time working with people because you have a leadership, management, advisory, helping or support role.
  • Your performance depends, probably more than on anything else, on how well you communicate and deal with people, but often dealing with them is hard, because you find their behaviour challenging.
  • You have to cope with their challenging behaviour more often that you wish. When this happens, it stresses you and can affect your performance. It also affects their performance. You realise their challenging behaviour might itself be caused by stress at work.
  • Managing difficult and challenging behaviour effectively needs more experience, understanding and communication skills than you currently possess.
  • You have to deal with angry, or difficult customers, clients, managers, coworks and other colleagues.
  • You'd like help learning how to handle difficult conversations.
  • You'd like to be better at understanding and managing workplace conflict.
  • You need to become more skilled at managing other people's stress and emotions in the workplace.
  • You need to be better at communicating with difficult people.
  • You'd like to be better at understanding and managing workplace bullying.
  • You'd like to be better at applying assertive communication techniques.
  • You'd like to be more skilled at dealing with difficult supervisors.
  • You'd like to be more skilled at managing office politics.
  • You'd like to be better at understanding and managing emotions at work (other people's as well as your own).
  • You'd like to develope effective negotiation skills
  • You'd like to be better at understanding and managing conflict resolution strategies

A London Uk based management training course called "Skills with People"

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He's now far more aware of his impact on others

How This Course Can Help You Communicate Better

What this communication skills course in dealing with challenging behaviour can help you to do better

  • It can enable you to be better at dealing with aggressive, challenging and difficult behaviour on the part of customers, staff, employees and colleagues, at managing difficult people and situations constructively, at managing a difficult team.
  • You'll be more confident you have strategies for dealing with challenging people and situations with in a professional way.
  • You'll be better at coping with the difficulties arising from the behaviour of colleagues you work with.
  • You'll be more successful at managing stress, your own and other people's.
  • You'll have the skills to create more productive and harmonious relationships with all the people you work with, including those whose behaviour you find difficult and challenging.

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Learn how to be soft on the person yet tough on the issue

Is This Training Course Relevant For You?

Is this training course on dealing with challenging behaviour relevant for you?

Hundreds of managers and professionals, over several decades, have obtained the understanding, experience and communication skills they need for this important aspect of their working life and career, by attending this management training course. It provides a 3-day course of practical behaviour training in a small group, as well as a substantial number of individual one-to-one coaching sessions spread out over several months. It's called, Skills with People (see participant's testimonials to hear how clients rate and review this training). In particular:

  • It will increase your confidence at handling the kinds of challenging situations and behaviours many experienced managers, leaders and professionals find very difficult.
  • It will help you develop a simple and therefore memorable set of practical communication skills and strategies that will enable you to improve your performance and handle these types of challenges effectively.
  • The fact that these skills are simple to understand, does not mean they are necessarily easy to practise. That's why, as well as the group training workshop, we also provide the support of several private and confidential one-to-one coaching sessions with a trainer.
  • The skills and strategies to handle challenging behaviour should be a central part of any leadership or management development.
  • For lack of this ingredient many managers, leaders and specialist in advisory and support roles fall short or fail, in spite of all their drive and technical competence, in leading, managing and supporting teams successfully.
  • Though we call our training courses, Skills with People, other labels are sometimes used when we provide it inhouse, including … communication, leadership development, leadership training, management training, behaviour training, personal development, or emotional intelligence, professional development, performance management.
  • We focus on the two vital skills at the heart of emotional intelligence. One is speaking assertively (sometimes known assertiveness skills) - that is, behaving in a way that gets other people to take you seriously. The other is listening with empathy - that is, satisfying the other person that you respect them and understand what matters to them.
  • This approach is extremely helpful when you have to appraise other people's performance and giving them constructive feedback.
  • It enables you to create a calmer experience, and a more trusting atmosphere of mutual respect and understanding.
  • Although it focusses on handling situations in your working environment in general, our clients often tell us it has also been hugely helpful to them in dealing with relationships with family and friends.

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Learn how to be both firm and fair

What Skills Will This Training Course Give You?

We give participants not only the understanding but also the communication skills they need to be confident they can calm people down when they are hard to deal with and under stress. On the training course, as you practise handling challenging situations, your understanding develops too, as does your confidence. This is hands-on behavioural training with lots of practice, feedback and coaching.

No two participants are the same. Everyone's pace of learning and the situations they find challenging are different. That's why there are no more than 6 participants in the group, and why everyone is offered, as well as the three-day group session, several separate private and confidential one-to-one coaching sessions.

The understanding you will get from the training course

One of the things this training course is about is stress management. When people you work with are under stress … whatever the root cause … their stress unavoidably stresses you. You can't manage stress unless you can understand what's stressing them and making them speak and act in a way that you find hard to deal with. For this you need empathy. It's a learnable skill. It's one of the core skills you would develop on this course.

Other people's stress might be to do with habits of response they've needed to develop to cope with past pressures in their life … or it might be to do with the current threats, real or imagined, that they're experiencing in work … or both. It also helps to be aware of and be able to communicate about the stress to your mental health you your self are under in having to deal with all this.

The communication skills you will get from the training course?

Our approach is simple and practical. We've boiled the skill-set you need down to just two strategies. These two will equip you to handle almost all situations where people's behaviour in the workplace presents a challenge. Once you've mastered this crucial two, you'll have more confidence you can apply the skills and manage situations and people you previously found hard to manage. The reason is that, when you use them together, you're able to create a calm, rational atmosphere of mutual respect, understanding and trust. This is particularly needed in times of stress, uncertainty, change and conflict.

This simple skill-set is the heart of emotional intelligence. Most of us already have this to some extent. It's a natural part of the human race's evolved survival kit. It's based on an inbuilt sensitivity to feelings, and how they can affect our relationships with others. But regrettably, due to pressures and habits of modern life, society and environment, many of us pay little attention to our in-build emotional intelligence and leave it unused and dormant.

The two crucial management skills this course will remind you of and help you master are:

  1. Empathy - the ability to listen and tune in to another person's point of view, and to encourage others to be true to themselves,
  2. Assertiveness - the ability to get the other person to tune in to your point of view, and to be true to yourself.

This training course is not theoretical but a practical experience. You learn strategies and practise how to listen with empathy to others, that is, what to say to make them feel genuinely respected and understood. You also learn how to talk to them in a professional way that makes them hear what you are saying and take you seriously. The two skills are very effective when used together in the same situation or conversation because, together, they create a respectful and trusting atmosphere. As well as plenty of practice, you receive helpful feedback about your precise effect on others as you practise and develop.

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People who feel understood are more receptive

Other Reasons You Might Choose This Training Course?

  • What you will be learning on this course will make you more confident and successful in dealing with challenging individuals, questions and groups at all levels.
  • You have your own individual priorities, needs and challenges. The private and confidential coaching we provided both before and after the three-day group session will enable you to get the most out of the course for your own individual priorities, needs and challenges.
  • What you learn from it will not only make you more assertive but also more understanding of other people, to understand their issues, as you learn how to focus your attention on them and be a better listener.
  • The skills you learn on this course will help you develop and get the best out of your team if you are in a position of leadership and management.
  • The training course will enable you to demonstrate a very positive approach to handling challenging situations.
  • Many of our clients discover, as a result, that they are able to deal with a much wider range of challenging situations and people than previously.
  • The more responsibility you have at work, the more crucial it is to be able to manage these kinds of situation well.
  • If you use this approach when dealing with your boss, his or her confidence and trust in you will increase, because you are building a relationship of mutual respect and understanding.
  • On this course you work closely with other participants and learn a lot from their experience.
  • Practising these skills makes you more understanding not only of others but of yourself as well.
  • You will be able to create an understanding and calm environment in which others are less stressed, because they no longer feel threatened.

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People used to be scared of him - no longer

Is This The Kind Of Communication Skills Training Course You're Looking For?

  • Yes, if you are looking for a course in how to deal with, handle, manage, cope, or respond to challenging behaviour, difficult people, handling staff, employees, difficult teams or situations in the workplace, or in how to deal with difficult or aggressive customers in a professional way.
  • Yes, if you want training as well as private and confidential coaching that will enhance your management and leadership ability, your relationships with people that apply both in the workplace and away from work.
  • Yes, if you want to be able to reduce the stress around you at work.
  • Yes, if you want to be more confident in handling what is probably the most challenging part of your job, dealing with difficult people.
  • Yes, if you want to enjoy your work more because are able to create around you in your company, business, team, department or organization, an atmosphere of mutual respect understanding and trust.

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People can't help arguing when they feel misunderstood

What Situations Will This Training Help You Handle More Successfully?

  1. It will equip you to manage situations in the workplace caused by difficult behaviour on the part of difficult employees, staff, colleagues … and even bosses for those who report to demanding managers.
  2. Dealing with difficult, challenging or aggressive customers. These skills are important for anyone involved in customer services, especially when there is a problem.
  3. Team building, and managing difficult teams where there is pressure, stress, disagreement or conflict.
  4. Running challenging meetings.
  5. Conflict management. There can be little conflict resolution unless you know how to create an atmosphere of mutual respect, understanding and trust.
  6. Project management.
  7. Giving bad news.
  8. Managing change. Many people feel threatened by change, and therefore fear it and resist it.
  9. Performance management, and conducting staff appraisals.
  10. Taking part effectively in meetings.
  11. Bringing out the best in people in wide variety of challenging situations.

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Assertiveness, Listening Skills & Emotional Intelligence Training

What Old Mental Habits Can Get In Your Way?

Most of us cling to old mental habits even when we no longer need them. Often, they're so deeply embedded in our mind that we're not even aware of them, but they can get in our way when we're trying to develop a new skill. That's why, as well as helping you learn new skills on this course, we also help you unlearn old mental habits when they seem to be getting in the way.

Here's an example. Many people believe that behind other people's difficult behaviour in the workplace there must be a deliberately negative motive. It's a belief that makes us look for the worst in other people and makes it hard for us to deal with them in a way that gets the best out of them. It may come from our own past experiences, perhaps in early years, of trying to protect ourselves from difficult behaviour. It may be a reason why we find difficult behaviour at work so challenging. The trouble is it makes our strategy for dealing with difficult people at work appear disapproving and leads to even more difficult and challenging behaviour from the people who are already being difficult.

If we assume instead that the difficult and challenging behaviour of people at work may come from a positive, though unrequited workplace need, we will have a more open-minded approach to handling them and are more likely to discover what their need is. This will provide us with a more successful, less disapproving, strategy for managing challenging behaviour. We can then bring out the best in them.

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Free exploratory coaching session

The first session is free so you're not committing yourself until you're sure this training is relevant for you. You will also learn something practical you can use right away that'll help you handle a difficult situation more successfully at work.

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