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

Do any of the examples below
remind you of your own management training need?

If so, here's how you can find out if our Skills with People course is the right course for you

  • First watch our short introductory video, "Who needs these communication skills?"
  • Then contact us for a chat and we’ll be glad to discuss what challenges you may be experiencing, and if and how this course might meet your own particular management training need.
  • Every participant begins this course with a free exploratory one-to-one coaching session by phone or Skype. You make no commitment to proceed beyond this until you're sure our Skills with People course can meet your own particular need.

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

15 examples 
of managers and professional people
who came on the Skills with People course

1. Successful manager with no specific training need other than a wish to understand better her effect on others and sharpen up her skills in preparation for a more challenging role

Manager on the fast track - loved developing her skills and hungry for feedback. She was keen to know how she came across and also to hone up her emotional intelligence in preparation for a new and more challenging role. She wanted to know what it felt like to be managed by her, to negotiate with her, to criticise her, to disagree with her, to be in meetings run by her. On the course she discovered that although she had no overriding specific management training need her ability to handle difficult situations could be significantly enhanced by sharpening up her assertiveness as well as by showing more empathy. 

2. Successful by his own efforts but not delegating or developing others

Young managing director, better at solving problems than anyone else in his team, but the more he solved the longer was the queue at his door - people were too dependent on him. He needed to stop being a compulsive problem-solver and start delegating and coaching. He had to shift the focus of his attention from solving it himself to finding out what was stopping them solve it. His management training need was to learn an entirely different way of listening. 

3. Technically very sound but lacking persuasive skills

Chief engineer on a large site. Had difficulty winning directors' support for his ideas - didn't know how to persuade others without getting into arguments. The more he argued the less receptive they became. He had to learn to stop arguing when people resisted, listen patiently, appreciate what was bothering them, reassure them, and not press his case until he had opened their minds - in other words, use more empathy. His management training need was to learn to use more emotional intelligence.

4. Flying high but not creating rapport and unintentionally creating a tense atmosphere in her team

Senior executive, earmarked for the board, task oriented, analytical, always logical - secretly sensitive to atmosphere but uncomfortable when feelings were openly displayed. She knew she wasn't getting the best out of her team and that some of them were unhappy, but she didn't know how to tackle it. They needed her to tell them when she felt good or bad about their performance instead of leaving them guessing, and to show more interest in their feelings instead of seeming not to care. Her main management training need was to develop her emotional intelligence.

5. A very positive attitude masquerading as a negative one

Rather gruff engineer who loved his job. He enjoyed helping people who came to him with requests for help - though he rarely showed it. Instead, he would frown as he thought aloud about the difficulties he was going to have to overcome in order to solve the problem. To most people this gave the totally false signal that he was unwilling or unable to help. They needed to hear him say he was keen to help and confident he could deal with the request. His management training need was to learn how to create much better mutual understanding, to become more emotionally intelligent. 

6. Career going well in spite of not being very assertive

Manager in R & D, highly regarded, soon to be promoted, wanted to brush up his skills. Didn't like having to be firm with or critical of people. He was so aware of the risk of undermining them that he sometimes failed to do justice to the issue he wanted to raise. He needed to learn how to be firm but fair, strong on the issue without attacking or undermining the person. His management training need was to learn to be assertive without being aggressive.

7. Forceful communicator who created friction

Marketing director aiming to bring about a change of outlook in the company. She would argue her case and then get impatient if people didn't see reason. The way she argued made them feel attacked. Her management training need was to learn to stop saying "Yes, but" and listen with empathy to their concerns - in other words, change her approach from an adversarial one to a more emotionally intelligent one leading to mutual respect and understanding.

8. Well intentioned manager who was demoralising his team

Sales manager with reputation for inflexibility and intolerance - having difficulty retaining members of his team. He was modelling himself on the authoritarian style of his first manager as a young man. His management training need was to learn to listen with an open mind, criticise constructively and coach staff when they needed help or raised concerns or objections.

9. Respected specialist who was too quiet in meetings

Accountant who was good at her job but lacked confidence at meetings - afraid people would be offended if she expressed her feelings and concerns. Her management training need was to learn how to talk frankly in meetings without being aggressive - in other words, how to be assertive.

10. Very logical person who didn't create enough rapport

IT manager, clever but "a bit of a cold fish". When approached with a request he would say little and ask searching questions. It shocked him to find that he made people wary because he seemed to be contemptuous. His management training need was to learn how to be more supportive and to show more understanding of people's feelings - to be more emotionally intelligent.

11. Lots of energy and ideas but little attention for his clients

Capable accountant with plenty of energy and ideas, talked a great deal but didn't listen. He was losing clients because they had no confidence he appreciated their needs. He needed to learn to slow down, lay his own thoughts aside, and listen.

12. Enormous enthusiasm but little sensitivity

Extremely task oriented manager with a reputation for being "on a short fuse". When thwarted she would brush people aside in an apparently arrogant manner. So serious were the complaints about her that her job was in jeopardy. Her management training need was to learn how to let off steam without being aggressive, and how to show she was aware of the feelings and needs of others, in other words, show more emotional intelligence.

13. Couldn't communicate with non-technical people

Electronics engineer on an advanced project, enormously enthusiastic about the project, but would get frustrated and be discouraged at meetings with production and marketing colleagues who had difficulty grasping his ideas. They said he was blinding them with science. His management training need was to learn how switch his mind from the detail of his project, tune in to their concerns and talk in language they could understand. 

14. Diligent, reliable project leader who hated dealing with difficult or aggressive people

He often needed cooperation from people in other departments over whom he had no direct authority, who were sometimes were difficult to handle. When his first approach failed he would ask his manager to intervene. His manager was concerned because he needed the project leader to stand on his own two feet and not keep asking for help. The project leader's management training need was to learn how to be more assertive and be getting cooperation from difficult or aggressive people.

15. Wanted to allow his people to have their say, but his meetings got out of hand

In his efforts to avoid acting like an autocrat this manager allowed arguments to develop between members of his department at meetings. His hope was that good sense and reason would prevail in the end. But his people were frustrated at the time being wasted. His management training need was to learn how to keep a tighter hold of the reigns in meetings, how to resolve conflict and disagreement between members, and how to assert his managerial authority when he had to make a decision.

Is there more information on this website
relevant to your own management training need?

Yes. You might also find our pages on communication skills, skills with people and emotional intelligence 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

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 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 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 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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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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 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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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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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 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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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 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 - 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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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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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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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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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 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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Examples of Training Needs Met

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

Need To Know The Quick Facts?