There’s more to learning and development than going on a course. Beyond the training room there are many ways of making sure that knowledge, skills and changed attitudes are sustainable – and make a difference back in the workplace. Blended solutions, in particular, help to consolidate and embed the learning. Combining training and coaching produces lasting results.
Development is a process, not a one-off event. Successful learning programmes bring together a mix of high-value content offered through a variety of methods - including e-learning - delivered by inspirational trainers and coaches and underpinned by realworld support. Our approach to blended learning incorporates a range of techniques. We offer:
- Pre-work exercises
- Action learning
- Regular hints and tips
- Online activities and exercises to reinforce face-toface learning
- An e-learning solution so participants can self-manage their learning and managers can monitor it
- Advice on how to encourage participants' managers to support their learning before and after the event
- Evaluation activities which encourage participants to review learning and reinforce them to take action
Plenty of studies demonstrate the value of follow-on coaching after training, to reinforce individual commitments and actions. Many of our coaches are also trainers, so they're well placed to provide follow-up on our courses. Alternatively we can train your managers to be effective coaches. Blended learning solutions will ensure you meet your learners' needs, reinforce key messages and embed the learning.
Our e-learning solution, SpeakCube, is a suite of webenabled applications which we can deploy at short notice for access anywhere anytime. Set-up is simple, fast and keeps costs to a minimum so you can focus on the benefits of training rather than implementing the technology. Because it's webenabled, you can avoid system integration and security challenges. Learners can access their assignments with minimum effort from anywhere with an Internet connection, in or out of office hours. Through it we can manage the full range of development activities, from needs analysis through to assessment and evaluation and so ensure that material is clear and consistent irrespective of the method of delivery. You can use SpeakCube in many ways including: for product launches, competence evaluation, corporate communication, skills training, sales training, assessment and observation.
- Scheduled programme of learning - face-to-face, self-directed learning or online - which leads people through their development plans in line with the needs of your organisation and within the required timescales
- Accessible support at every stage to ensure that development does not stall
- QuestionLogic tool allows you to flex the questions and learning experience rather than take a sheep-dip approach. This approach can both direct people's learning experience and provide insightful profiles of capability for the business
- You can make changes to the product specification during or after the training quickly and easily
- Learning can be undertaken at times and locations convenient to the learners
- Activity is monitored discreetly so managers see which learning items have been completed, by whom and when - learners are prompted for action as necessary
- Learning objectives are achieved rapidly with minimal business down-time
In an increasingly global marketplace organisations can't afford to neglect the importance of good communication. Companies that invest in cultural awareness training undoubtedly reap rewards through effective working relationships, better communication, employee retention and productive staff. The aim of this training is to increase cross-cultural awareness and improve relationships between managers and staff based in different countries.
The workshop is appropriate for anyone who needs an increased awareness of differences and similarities between different cultures in a business context.
- Greet others in accordance with their customs
- Build strong and lasting relationships with people from other cultures
- Know the right way to go about conversation, holding business meetings, negotiating, etiquette etc
- Increased awareness of the differences in approach to those in positions of authority
- Enhance your reputation when doing business in other countries or working in a cross-cultural team
Why cultural awareness matters
- What do we mean by culture? How is it defined?
- What can go wrong? How do misunderstandings occur?
Recognising our own cultural assumptions
- Hidden beliefs about how things should be and how they lead to thinking something is ‘right' or 'wrong'
- How cultural values affect the way we behave
Stereotypes and prejudice
- The danger of judging people by their appearance
- The nature of prejudice, the horns and halo effect and the importance of valuing diversity
Seeing the world through the eyes of other cultures
- Considering perspectives and world views of those from another culture or country
Meeting and greeting
- How conventions for meeting and greeting vary
- What to say - and not say. How close to stand etc
Social etiquette and rules for personal space
- Taboos - being aware of things you must do in a business context in other cultures
- How rules for personal space vary
Cultural perceptions of time
- Different conventions for being on time or late and how they can lead to tension
Taking account of communication styles
Managing people in different cultures
Event Design,Delivery & Speakers
Speak First design and deliver a range of events covering any of our subject areas. This can involve anything from a motivating session for a 90-minute slot at a conference or away-day, to working with you to create an event over several days. For example, we delivered a three-hour session on Networking and Presentation Skills for a multi cultural audience in Sofia and successfully deliver a two-day Impact and Confidence event for senior managers on an annual basis. We listen to your needs and design an event that fits with the key themes and branding you want to convey. Whether you want an event with everyone in the same room, or concurrent activities with complex logistics, we can design an experience which engages everyone. It can be a challenge working with multiple providers. We are experienced in this and have a proven track record in achieving seamless delivery. Whether the occasion is for 20 people or 200, our trainers and facilitators know how to relate to the audience and work well as a team. A number of our consultants are professional speakers in specific areas of communication. We select them for their reputation in engaging the audience and providing meaningful messages.
Coaching is a way of achieving rapid and transformational change. We work one-on-one at middle and senior levels to help managers in organisations develop a competitive edge by improving their communication and relationship skills. Each coach in our team is an expert in communication. All have a business background which means they identify with the issues your people deal with and help you develop practical solutions. We make sure our coaches have undertaken coach training. Many of our coaches are NLP qualified.
- mproved business performance
- rapid individual development
- increased retention of key people
- superior productivity and customer service
We work at all levels, up to and including board level. We match the coach to fit your needs so we select those who have a track record in working at the same level and in the area where you need coaching. Our team is large enough for you to choose the best coach for you. All of our coaching is focused on communication, confidence and relationships so every coach brings specialist expertise. We can help your people enhance the way they lead and inspire an organisation, handle the media or develop the communication skills necessary to build strong relationships internally and with clients. We support your managers in achieving performance and development goals.
- You can measure the outcome because we are goal and results-oriented
- We're prepared to balance support with challenge
- We work on the issues that are most important to the person we're coaching and at his or her pace
- Our clients make rapid progress in transforming their performance, developing more choices, new perspectives, and strategies to deal with challenging situations
- Our work goes beyond changing behaviours and developing skills - we challenge assumptions and limiting beliefs. By working on beliefs we make sure change is sustainable
- While we adopt a non-directive approach, using powerful questions and total attention, we are flexible enough to share our expertise and experience
- Our goal is to ensure the client gains greater self awareness and can tap into internal resources while maintaining ownership and commitment to change
- We offer support between sessions via email or telephone where required. We can also observe our clients in action where appropriate
- We operate at a strategic level, reflecting back patterns and themes. Since confidentiality is critical in coaching, we contract up-front with the client and the organisation how success will be monitored and information shared
- Our coaches regularly update their skills and receive coaching supervision
Train The Trainer
If you're asked to train colleagues as part of a strategic initiative or project roll-out, the challenge can be hugely rewarding, providing you know how to train. Your knowledge and expertise are a given - your credibility as a potential trainer relies on how you get this across. This practical and informative course will build your confidence in delivering material and interacting with course participants. You'll leave with ideas to absorb and motivate your audience. You will also know how to make the sessions meaningful, and feel confident to undertake this role.
Anyone who is not a professional trainer and who needs to deliver training courses for others. This course will benefit those who want to acquire excellent delivery skills and make a positive impact on others.
- Be able to train with a clear, confident delivery style
- Know how to build and maintain rapport with participants throughout a training session
- Adapt what you do to meet the needs of those with different learning and behavioural styles
- Make the most of your body language and voice
- Learn techniques that engage groups and stimulate interaction and involvement
- Improve your feedback skills so participants leave with real personal insights
- Know how to handle disruptive behaviour
Understanding how people learn
- Learning styles - where you fit in and what this means in training
- The four stages of learning
Managing audience attention span
- Why attention dips and how to keep them awake
- Using the primacy and recency effects to make your sessions more memorable
- Bringing material to life with stories and examples
- How rhetorical techniques bring texture and colour to your communication
Presenting and giving feedback
- Delivering input with presence, credibility, variety and engagement
- The why, what and how of giving excellent feedback
Communicating key messages
- Getting your key messages across crisply and clearly
- Tips for briefing exercises so people are clear and know what to do first time
- What to consider before, during and after a course so it runs smoothly
- How to handle nerves and come across as confident
Managing the group
- Discover your behavioural style and learn how to identify other people's
- Using energisers and other tactics to keep energy high
- Using facilitation skills to draw the group out
- Key tips for briefing and debriefing exercises
- Coming across seamlessly if you co-facilitate
Dealing with the difficult or unexpected
- How to handle the course from hell
- Dealing with the hecklers, the non-engagers, the talkers, the slow ones
Becoming a Business Partner
The role of internal consultant or partner is fast becoming a must for many organisations. Projects typically falter because of a lack of understanding of the broader context, poor contracting, weak sponsors, insufficient communication and poorly defined roles or processes. It can affect relationships that lack a strong foundation or commitment. At an organisational level there's a need to resolve complex problems, break down the silo mentality and develop skills in dealing with ambiguity. Working as a business partner requires a different skill set, as well as knowledge and a strategy to put the tools and processes to best use.