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  • Does your feedback help people change?
    Does your feedback help people change?
  • Can you allow discussion and still keep control?
    Can you allow discussion and still keep control?
  • Are your conversations achieving what you want?
    Are your conversations achieving what you want?
  • Do you frequently get into arguments?
    Do you frequently get into arguments?
  • Are you getting the best out of your people?
    Are you getting the best out of your people?
  • How are you coming across to your boss?
    How are you coming across to your boss?

Might the skills you can learn on this London UK training course
give a significant boost to your performance as a manager?

YES if you want to be more successful at

What you'll take away from this communication skills training course?

You'll have a simple and easy to remember set of crucial communication skills. Practising these particular skills can't fail to develop your emotional intelligence. You'll be able to treat others with respect and understanding while speaking up for yourself with firmness, clarity and integrity. You'll be able to apply these skills to your most challenging relationships, conversations and meetings, and when dealing with difficult people. As you practise these skills your respect and understanding for others will grow, as will theirs for you. These skills will also help you with your written communications. 

Free exploratory coaching session

INTERESTED?

If so, you can have a FREE exploratory coaching session. It'll give you a foretaste of what you can get from the course. You make no commitment to proceed beyond this until you're sure this training is relevant to your own particular need.

How to accept this offer

Simply contact us for a preliminary chat and to arrange your free exploratory coaching session. 

What this session will do for you

In this session we'll aim to give you something practical you can use right away that'll help you handle a difficult situation more successfully at work. All you need do to prepare for this session is think about the kinds of situations you want to be able to handle more successfully.

FAQs

You'll find answers to many of your questions about the content and method of this course under FAQs (in the main menu above).

Want to know more 
about our communication skills training?
Read on

What's our communication skills training objective?

You're unlikely to achieve your goals at work without cooperation from others. But people's cooperation is no accident. It depends on how you communicate with them. On this course we aim to help you do it in ways that win  their cooperation, and stop doing it in ways that lose  their cooperation.

What specific feedback will you get on this communication skills training course?

A central ingredient in our approach to communication skills training is the quality of the feedback  we help you collect on the course, feedback about your behaviour as a manager or leader and it's effect on others. You'll find the answers to four very practical questions about your personal impact and effectiveness when communicating with both individuals and groups. This feedback will make a significant contribution to the development of your emotional intelligence:-

  • Precisely what emotional effect am I having on others? When am I switching them on and when am I switching them off?
  • Precisely how am I achieving this? What am I saying or doing, even unintentionally, that might be having this effect?
  • Exactly how do I need to change my approach if I want to have a different effect and get a different response from people?
  • What inner obstacle will make it hard for me to keep up my new approach? What old attitudes and old patterns of thought and behaviour do I need to unlearn if the change in my approach is to be genuine and lasting?

To assist you in this process we give you lots of opportunities to experiment, practise, and ask for more feedback. You get clear and specific suggestions about what to say and how to say it, and plenty of individual coaching. You go round the cycle of practice and feedback again and again until you're confident you're able to come across as you intend.

What key basic communication skills does this training course help you master?

Treating others with respect and understanding calls for empathy. Speaking up with firmness, clarity and integrity calls for assertiveness. These two crucial communicating skills, blended together, will enable you to create a robust but harmonious atmosphere of courtesy, mutual respect, trust and understanding. Such an atmosphere is not only very good for business, it works wonders in other walks of life, too. We'll help you master these two crucial skills and use them together when you need them most. They are the two basic skills at the heart of emotional intelligence:-

  • Assertiveness - getting others to recognise and acknowledge your concerns. It's hard to get others to take you seriously unless you can speak assertively. It's how you give them access to what's really going on in your mind.
  • Empathy - recognising, acknowledging and trying to understand other people's concerns. It's a listening skill. It's hard to gain their trust and make them receptive to your influence without empathy.  With empathy you gain access to what's going on in other people’s minds.

What specific kinds of situation will this communication skills training empower me to handle more successfully?

Here’s a list of situations most people find challenging. They're challenging because they're the situations in which people's emotions are aroused. That's why you need emotional intelligence to handle them. You can pick the most relevant items on the list, and we’ll help you practise them as much as you like in safety and with expert coaching:-

  • turn unproductive business relationships into powerful and successful partnerships,
  • gain people's co-operation and win their confidence when they’re resisting or objecting,
  • calm people down when they are aggressive or complaining,
  • persuade, sell or negotiate strongly but in a positive atmosphere without becoming entrenched in fruitless argument or appearing arrogant,
  • resolve conflict and disagreement in an atmosphere of mutual respect and understanding,
  • confront difficult issues without being aggressive or over-familiar,
  • stand up for what I think or want without getting a reputation for being arrogant or difficult,
  • disagree without getting into conflict,
  • say "no" without causing resentment,
  • give constructive criticism – being firm but fair – "tough on the issue but soft on the person",
  • give really bad news without appearing arrogant or heartless,
  • give genuine praise without being over-familiar or making people feel patronised,
  • criticise without making people feel attacked,
  • receive criticism positively and with resilience without appearing defensive or arrogant,
  • appraise, counsel, coach or mentor helpfully,
  • handle resistance and negativity with confidence and grace when you’re chairing a meeting.

But doesn’t all this talk of communication skills  make this a rather mechanical process?

Not at all. These are not like manual skills, such as driving a car, which once developed you can use automatically while your mind and heart may be somewhere else. They require your full attention. They are skills of the heart, ways of expressing your whole self honestly and helping the other person do the same. They enable you to speak up for yourself and at the same time be generous and considerate to others. They're extremely valuable both at work and outside work. 

What is emotional intelligence and why does it play so crucial a part in communication skills training?

In his book, "Emotional Intelligence", Daniel Goleman surveys human brain research and explains why people become irrational when their emotions are aroused. He explains why we are more successful in life and at work if we are aware of, can admit, and can talk about feelings. He puts forward the concept of emotional intelligence, and defines it as a set of learnable skills. The heart of it is the awareness of and ability to verbalise feelings, and the two central skills in his set are listening with empathy and speaking assertively. These are the two skills at the heart of this communication skills course.

Feelings are our life force – our vitality. Provided we can admit and express them they can be the source of our personal authority, freedom and integrity. Bottling them up or suppressing them when we are under stress causes a loss of vitality, confuses our thinking, and keeps us in a disconnected, defensive, uncreative, self-limiting and restricted state of mind. Talking about feelings is a safe way of expressing them. It enables us to connect with others and recover the full use of our rational faculties. Empathy and assertiveness are the two communication skills that, in combination, help us do this. That’s why they’re so high-powered.

We've said our approach to communication skills training is "simple but not easy". What’s difficult about it?

What makes learning these skills difficult is old habits – old patterns of thought and speech, deeply ingrained through a lifetime’s practice. This course is designed not only to give you new communicating skills and techniques but also to help you lay aside old habits. This means not only becoming aware  of them but also unlearning  them. That’s why the course includes four private and confidential one-to-one coaching sessions by phone or Skype. These are to help you make sure you don’t revert under pressure back at work. The whole learning experience is spread over 6 months.

If a number of people in the company need this kind of communication skills training, can it be brought to us and be done in-company?

Yes. We first talk to some of the individuals who need it in order to do a specific communication skills training needs analysis, and then make sure the training is geared precisely to their needs. 

Yet more reasons why you might benefit
from this communication skills training course

  • You work in customer services and find it very difficult having to handle customers’ complaints when things go wrong.
  • You’re not confident enough and at your best when dealing with very senior people.
  • You’d like to be able to speak with more personal authority even when you're not in a position to tell people what to do.
  • You'd like to be able to make your conversations at work more purposeful and productive.
  • You often find yourself being misunderstood. You'd like to be able to reduce misunderstandings.
  • You're not very successful in dealing with difficult people.
  • You'd like to be more aware of non-verbal communication and be more alert and responsive to non-verbal signals.

Is there more information on this website
relevant to communication skills?

Yes. You might also find our pages on assertiveness, feedback skills and managing conflict relevant and helpful.

We love helping you communicate successfully

By giving you communication skills that'll transform even your most challenging relationships and interactions.

That's the purpose of Skills with People, our training course for managers and professional people at all levels. Thousands have benefited from this course.

Video Introduction

What People Have Said About The Course

Golf Club Manager

Ten out of ten for the course for me personally. I think I would have resigned if it hadn't been for the course.

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National Training Index* report on the course

"From delegates reports we have identified Skills with People is a 'highspot' among UK business courses. Delegates mentioned as most helpful the enha ...

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Feedback from participant's boss - A Philips Semiconductors director

To what extend do I think his training need has been satisfied? Completely. I have been approached by 4 peers to tell me that they could see a very po ...

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Feedback from a participant's boss - a WS Atkins director

Now he actively listens, probes, asks for clarifications and does not assume anymore he knows the answer.

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Feedback from participant's boss - a Johnson & Johnson finance director

He has made excellent progress in the management of his team. He has ensured key stakeholders are involved in decision-making and has gone to great le ...

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Feedback from participant's boss - an HSBC investment director

I have had three unprompted comments from different team members and colleagues who have been surprised at the consideration he has shown in helping s ...

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Sports Centre Manager

I feel that my relationship with other attendees has improved massively following the session. I'd say 9/10 for what I've got from the course as I sa ...

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Senior Engineer, Qualcomm

An unbelievable experience, highly motivating training and one of the few which stays forever in your mind. A tangible impact to your life and workin ...

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Feedback from participant's boss - a Johnson Matthey Catalysts (Germany) senior manager

There has been a noticeable improvement in the performance of this customer service engineer. He is much more succinct now than he was before. He was ...

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Feedback from participant's boss - a Prudential director

He is a lot more confident. At the last meeting of our business unit leaders he fully led the meeting and dealt with people very well.

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Senior Resource Consultant, Shell International

“Skills with People” has helped me deal with conflict situations.  It has helped me to diffuse tension in meetings and convert pushback into alignment ...

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Feedback from participant's boss - a Billiton director

He's obviously making a positive effort and it does show. People used to be scared of him. No longer.

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Feedback from a participant's boss - a Shell International senior manager

He is showing far more self-awareness and more restraint in potentially confrontational situations. He is far more aware of the impact his actions and ...

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Feedback from participant's boss - a Kimberley-Clark marketing director

He is now aware of his need to control his direct approach. He was sometimes too assertive. I think he is now well balanced in this respect.

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Feedback from a participant's boss - a Merck Sharp & Dohme medical director

She feels more confident in tackling people and has been impressed with her new found techniques, e.g., in dealing with members of the marketing depar ...

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Leisure Centre Manager

The most useful part of the course was learning how to convey my disappointment with a member of staff without demotivating them, without making them ...

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Learning & Development Coordinator - The Entertainer

I can't recommend this course enough. It has genuinely been the most impactful course I have ever completed. Understanding that I can be assertive w ...

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The wife of a participant

"Just thinking about last night’s conversation and it’s bringing tears to my eyes – it’s what I’ve always wanted: to be able to talk with you like tha ...

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Feedback from a participant's boss - a Glaxo SmithKline research director

He has made good progress in two areas: 1. team leadership - he listens with empathy to others well and considers their standpoint as well as his own. ...

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Feedback from participant's boss - head of projects in Heinz

He now gains support through his willingness to involve people more and take them with him.

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Feedback from participant's boss - a Johnson & Johnson marketing director

She has become increasingly aware and focussed on ensuring she is gaining cooperation from colleagues by the way she approaches situations. E.g., Meet ...

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Feedback from participant's boss - Chairman of White Clarke Group

He has greatly improved his ability to manage a situation. He listens more and uses that information to convince. A good example is the .... group, wh ...

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Project Quality Engineer (self funding)

A lesson for life! The power of effective communication is incredible when one masters the skills "listen with empathy" / "speak assertively". Defin ...

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Theatre Manager

Managing to confront them but still maintain their cooperation and support. Previously I was either not confronting or confronting and ending up with ...

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Workshop Manager, Professional Plant Services

I now find it easier to have awkward conversations. (As a result of how he has changed several more people from his company are asking to attend the c ...

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Fundraising Officer, United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR)

A very intimate training which will make anyone reflect on how best to engage with colleagues when confronted with difficult situations.

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Thank you from a participant

I wanted to let you know that I have secured a new role.  I had to go through an assessment centre and one challenge was to negotiate with a 'belliger ...

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EHS advisor (environmental health and safety), Johnson Matthey

This is the best non-techincal course the company has ever put me on because it's the most useful. 

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Examples of Training Needs Met

Technically very sound but lacking persuasive skills Read More...
Very diligent but hated dealing with difficult people Read More...
Being more assertive would help career go better Read More...
Allowed his meetings to get out of hand Read More...
Enormous enthusiasm but little sensitivity Read More...
Had a positive attitude but gave a negative impression Read More...
Forceful communicator who created friction Read More...
Very logical but not creating enough rapport Read More...
Flying high but creating a tense atmosphere Read More...
Preparing for a more challenging role Read More...
Respected specialist who was too quiet at meetings Read More...
Difficulty communicating with non-technical people Read More...
Lots of energy and ideas but little attention for his clients Read More...
Well intentioned but demoralising his team Read More...
Not delegating or developing others Read More...

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