Essential Skills Workshops

Appreciative Inquiry

Organizations can be thought of as living beings made up of the individuals working within it. Appreciative Inquiry has the ability to change the whole organization by changing the people. Through positive questioning people will be directed to move in a positive direction. Recognizing the strengths and values of what works as opposed to what’s wrong will transform the individuals and thus transform the organization.

Appreciative Inquiry is a shift from looking at problems and deficiencies and instead focusing on strengths and successes. It is a tool for organizational change and it will strengthen relationships. Who doesn’t like to share good positive stories and events? Think about it.

Workshop Objectives:

·         Know the meaning of appreciative inquiry
·         Think in positive terms and avoid thinking negatively
·         Encourage others to think positively
·         Recognize positive attributes in people
·         Create positive imagery
·         Manage and guide employees in a positive environment

Business Acumen

Through our Business Acumen workshop your participants will improve their judgment and decisiveness skills. Business Acumen is all about seeing the big picture and recognizing that all decisions no matter how small can have an effect on the bottom line. Your participants will increase their financial literacy and improve their business sense.

Business Acumen will give your participants an advantage everyone wishes they had. The workshop will help your participants recognize learning events, manage risk better, and increase their critical thinking. Business Acumen has the ability to influence your whole organization, and provide that additional edge that will lead to success.

Workshop Objectives:

·         Know how to see the big picture

·         Develop a risk management strategy

·         Know how to practice financial literacy

·         Develop critical thinking

·         Practice management acumen

·         Find key financial levers

Business Ethics

A company’s ethics will determine its reputation. Good business ethics are essential for the long-term success of an organization. Implementing an ethical program will foster a successful company culture and increase profitability. Developing a Business Ethics program takes time and effort, but doing so will do more than improve business, it will change lives.

A company’s ethics will have an influence on all levels of business. It will influence all who interact with the company including customers, employees, suppliers, competitors, etc. All of these groups will have an effect on the way a company’s ethics are developed. It is a two-way street; the influence goes both ways, which makes understanding ethics a very important part of doing business today. Ethics is very important, as news can now spread faster and farther than ever before.

Workshop Objectives:

·         Define and understand ethics.
·         Understand the benefits of ethics.
·         Create strategies to implement ethics at work.
·         Recognize social and business responsibility.
·         Identify ethical and unethical behavior.
·         Learn how to make ethical decisions and lead with integrity.

Business Etiquette

Have you or your employees ever been in a situation where:

You met someone important and had no idea what to say or do?
You spilled soup all over yourself at an important business event?
You showed up at an important meeting under or overdressed?

Let’s face it: we’ve all had those embarrassing etiquette gaffes. Our Business Etiquette workshop will help your participants look and sound their best no matter what the situation.

Workshop Objectives:

·         Define etiquette and provide an example of how etiquette can be of value to a company or organization.

·         Understand the guidelines on how to make effective introductions.

·         Identify the 3 C’s of a good impression.

·         Understand how to use a business card effectively.

·         Identify and practice at least one way to remember names.

·         Identify the 3 steps in giving a handshake.

·         Enumerate the four levels of conversation and provide an example for each.

·         Understand place settings, napkin etiquette and basic table manners.

·         Understand the meaning of colors in dressing for success.

·         Differentiate among the dressy casual, semi-formal, formal and black tie dress code.

Change Management

Change is a constant in many of our lives. All around us, technologies, processes, people, ideas, and methods often change, affecting the way we perform daily tasks and live our lives. Having a smooth transition when change occurs is important in any situation and your participants will gain some valuable skills through this workshop.

The Change Management workshop will give any leader tools to implement changes more smoothly and to have those changes better accepted. This workshop will also give all participants an understanding of how change is implemented and some tools for managing their reactions to change.

Workshop Objectives:

·         List the steps necessary for preparing a change strategy and building support for the change

·         Describe the WIFM – the individual motivators for change

·         Use needed components to develop a change management  and communications plans, and to list implementation strategies

·         Employ strategies for gathering data, addressing concerns and issues, evaluating options and adapting a change direction

·         Utilize methods for leading change project status meetings, celebrating a successful change implementation, and sharing the results and benefits

·         Describe the four states of Appreciative Inquiry, its purposes, and sample uses in case studies

·         Use strategies for aligning people with a change, appealing to emotions and facts

·         Describe the importance of resiliency and flexibility in the context of change.

Civility In The Workplace

While a training program on workplace manners and courtesy may seem like overkill, the reality is: rudeness is an epidemic costing industry millions a year. Indeed, what society seems to be gaining in terms of both knowledge and technological advancement, it’s losing out on basic social values that directly impact the bottom line.

To address the growing problem of incivility in the work setting, this workshop introduces the concept of civility, its importance to a company, as well as its typical causes and effects. Skills needed to effectively practice civil behavior, as well as different ways organizations can systematize civility in the workplace will also be discussed. The benefits to Civility In The Workplace are countless and will pay off immensely in every aspect of your job.

Workshop Objectives:

·         Define civility, understand its causes, and enumerate at least three of its behavioral indicators.

·         Understand the costs of incivility, as well as the rewards of civility, within the workplace.

·         Learn practical ways of practicing workplace etiquette.

·         Learn the basic styles of conflict resolution.

·         Learn skills in diagnosing the causes of uncivil behavior.

·         Understand the role of forgiveness and conflict resolution.

·         Understand the different elements of effective communication.

·         Learn facilitative communication skills such as listening and appreciative inquiry.

·         Learn specific interventions that can be utilized when there’s conflict within the workplace.

·         Learn a recommended procedure for systematizing civil behavior within the workplace.

Conflict Resolution

Wherever two or more people come together, there is bound to be conflict. This course will give participants a seven-step conflict resolution process that they can use and modify to resolve conflict disputes of any size. Your participants will also be provided a set of skills in solution building and finding common ground.

In the Conflict Resolution workshop, participants will learn crucial conflict management skills, including dealing with anger and using the Agreement Frame. Dealing with conflict is important for every organization no matter what the size. If it is left unchecked or not resolved it can lead to lost production, absences, attrition, and even law suits.

Workshop Objectives:

·         Understand what conflict and conflict resolution mean

·         Understand all six phases of the conflict resolution process

·         Understand the five main styles of conflict resolution

·         Be able to adapt the process for all types of conflicts

·         Be able to break out parts of the process and use those tools to prevent conflict

·         Be able to use basic communication tools, such as the agreement frame and open questions

·         Be able to use basic anger and stress management techniques

Customer Service

Each and every one of us serves customers, whether we realize it or not. Maybe you’re on the front lines of a company, serving the people who buy your products. Perhaps you’re an accountant, serving the employees by producing their pay checks and keeping the company running. Or maybe you’re a company owner, serving your staff and your customers.

The Customer Service workshop will look at all types of customers and how we can serve them better and improve ourselves in the process. Your participants will be provided a strong skillset including in-person and over the phone techniques, dealing with difficult customers, and generating return business.

Workshop Objectives:

·         State what customer service means in relation to all your customers, both internal and external

·         Recognize how your attitude affects customer service

·         Identify your customers’ needs

·         Use outstanding customer service to generate return business

·         Build good will through in-person customer service

·         Provide outstanding customer service over the phone

·         Connect with customers through online tools

·         Deal with difficult customers

Customer Support

Customer support used to mean a face-to-face conversation with a customer, or a phone call.  Today, technology has changed how we approach customer support.  It now encompasses the internet, websites, webchats, and even smart phone apps.  The customer experience begins long before the purchase is made.

With our “Non-Telephone Customer Support” workshop, your participants will discover the new opportunities in customer support services via the internet, but also how to use these opportunities to their advantage.

Workshop Objectives:

·         Define customer support

·         Know the different venues for customer support

·         Recognize challenges of customer support

·         Learn different applications

·         Know proper forms of documentation

·         Learning to be proactive in customer support

Delivering Constructive Criticism

Delivering Constructive Criticism is one of the most challenging things for anyone. Through this workshop your participants will gain valuable knowledge and skills that will assist them with this challenging task. When an employee commits an action that requires feedback or criticism it needs to be handled in a very specific way.

Constructive Criticism if done correctly will provide great benefits to your organization. It provides the ability for management to nullify problematic behaviors and develop well rounded and productive employees. Constructive feedback shows an employee that management cares about them and will invest time and effort into their careers.

Workshop Objectives:

·         Understand when feedback should take place

·         Learn how to prepare and plan to deliver constructive criticism

·         Determine the appropriate atmosphere in which it should take place

·         Identify the proper steps to be taken during the session

·         Know how emotions and certain actions can negatively impact the effects of the session

·         Recognize the importance of setting goals and the method used to set them

·         Uncover the best techniques for following up with the employee after the session

Developing Corporate Behavior

With this workshop your participants will be able to develop a business environment that reflects a positive set of values and ethics. Aligning these characteristics with the standards of conduct is what makes a business stand out and be a leader in the business world.

Through our Developing Corporate Behavior workshop your participants should see improved team building, better communication, and trust. By realizing the benefits of corporate behavior and developing a successful plan your participants should see a reduction in incidents and an increase in team work and loyalty.

Workshop Objectives:

·         Understand what behavior is

·         Understand the benefits of corporate behavior

·         Know what type of behaviors you want to implement in your company

·         Know how to implement corporate behaviors

·         Know how to maintain corporate behaviors

Handling a Challenging Customer

Customer service is a necessary position in the job world today.  It helps companies give customers what they want and what they need. Although many customers can be difficult, with the right training, skills, and knowledge, any difficult customer can be handled properly and effectively.  With a positive attitude, your employee can effectively deal with the most difficult customers and both parties can end the conversation satisfied.

With The Handing A Challenging Customer workshop, your participants will learn how engaging customers properly can benefit both the employee and customer. Effective customer service can change a company’s reputation for the better.  Through this workshop, your participants will gain a new perspective on how to react to negative customers and leave the customer satisfied and as a returning customer.

Workshop Objectives:

·         Cultivate a positive attitude

·         Manage internal and external stress

·         Develop abilities to listen actively and empathize

·         Build a rapport with customers in person and over the phone

·         Understand the diverse challenges posed by customers

·         Develop strategies to adapt to challenging circumstances

Networking (Outside the Company)

Networking – according to Merriam Webster is “the exchange of information or services among individuals, groups, or institutions; specifically:  the cultivation of productive relationships for employment or business”. These and other events can become more easily managed with this great workshop.

With our Power of Networking (Outside the Company) workshop, your participants will begin to see how important it is to develop a core set of networking skills. By managing and looking at the way people interact and seeing things in a new light, your participants will improve on almost every aspect of their networking strategy.

Workshop Objectives:

·         Identify and avoid obstacles

·         Implement networking principles

·         Use online tools

·         Prioritize contacts

·         Manage networks effectively

 The Power of Networking (Within the Company)

Networking has become a crucial part of the world today. Most people are aware of external networking and primarily focus on that. It is important to pay extra attention to internal networking, or networking within the company. To be truly effective, internal networking must be utilized throughout the company.

With The Power of Networking (Within the Company) workshop your participants will learn how internal networking is changing the workforce. Through this workshop, your participants will gain a new perspective networking, and what benefits can come from fully utilizing and making connections with internal networking.

Workshop Objectives:

·         Define networking

·         Understand networking principles

·         Use networking tools

·         Avoid common mistakes

·         Understand how to build relationships

·         Manage time successfully

Risk Assessment and Management

It is not possible to control or manage 100% of risk, but knowing what do before, during, and after an event will mitigate the damage and harm. Identifying potential hazards and risks and making it part of the day to day business is important. Safety should be the first priority as every business must face the reality of risks and hazards.

Through our Risk Assessment and Management course your participants will be aware of hazards and risk they didn’t realize were around their workplace. Identifying hazards through proper procedures will provide your participants the ability to prevent that accident before it occurs. Limiting and removing potential dangers through Risk Assessment will be an incredible investment.

Workshop Objectives:

·         Identify hazards and risks

·         Update control measures

·         Grasp the fundamentals of accident reports

·          Identify risk management techniques

·         Outline a disaster recovery plan

·         Communicate to the organization

Safety In The Workplace

Workplace safety is the responsibility of everyone in an organization. Companies have legal obligations to meet certain safety requirements, but many go further than the minimum obligations. Safety standards and procedures must be put in place, and everyone needs to follow the standards in order for them to be effective.

Our Safety In The Workplace course will be instrumental in reviewing common hazards, safety techniques and after completion, your participants will have the tools to help them create a Safety policy for your work place. By identifying and anticipating hazards, employers can prevent injuries and keep employees safe.

Workshop Objectives:

·         Define workplace safety.
·         Understand legal responsibilities associated with a safe work environment.
·         Create a safety plan and identify hazards.
·         Recognize the role of management.
·         Develop training procedures.
·         Learn how to implement a safety plan.

Teamwork & Team Building

For most of us, teamwork is a part of everyday life. Whether it’s at home, in the community, or at work, we are often expected to be a functional part of a performing team. Having a strong team will benefit any organization and will lead to more successes than not.

The Teamwork And Team Building workshop will encourage participants to explore the different aspects of a team, as well as ways that they can become a top-notch team performer. Your participants will be given the details and concepts of what makes up a team, and what factors into being a successful team and team member.

Workshop Objectives:

·         Describe the concept of a team, and its factors for success

·         Explain the four phases of the Tuckman team development model and define their characteristics

·         List the three types of teams

·         Describe actions to take as a leader – and as a follower for each of the four phases (Forming, Storming, Norming and Performing)

·         Discuss the uses,  benefits and disadvantages of various team-building activities

·         Describe several team-building activities that you can use, and in what settings

·         Follow strategies for setting and leading team meetings

·         Detail problem-solving strategies using the Six Thinking Hats model — and one consensus-building approach to solving team problems

·         List actions to do — and those to avoid — when encouraging teamwork

Contact Us

Andrew Morrison

Director of Business & Industry Services