Communication Skills Training

Communication skills have always exerted a profound influence on people’s professional achievement and their personal happiness. It is through effective communication that we create, shape, and relate to our world. People have always made mistakes and had communication deficiencies, but today, in the digital era, communication deficiencies and errors and amplified, magnified, compounded. Minor communication deficiencies are now major impediments.

Fortunately, strong, smart, and effective communication skills are eminently teachable. Below is an overview of communication skills training offered by Critical Skills Nonprofit.

Presentation Effectiveness

In some ways, we have fewer opportunities for second chances these days. There’s more competition, less time, people are increasingly distracted, and—to top it all off—our words and actions may live in digital infamy forever. We need to get our words right, the first time, because we might not get a second chance. First impressions might become permanent.

Improving persuasive ability is the sole focus of this training. Confident, purposeful communicators make the very best organizational advocates, and effective persuasive presentations can have enormous impact on an individual’s career advancement. Presentation effectiveness training can helps people get their point across.

High-Stakes Communication

This training takes a situation that matters to the student—a meeting with the boss, resolving a customer dispute, an important sales meetings, and so forth—and designs individualized instruction for the relevant context. Participants receive constant feedback and instruction throughout the training and emerge on the other side with a host of usable techniques and personalized suggestions for handling high-stakes situations.

Cross-Cultural Communication

Our ever-connected, shrinking world has brought us closer to potential customers, clients, and employees from all over the world. But a client in Spain is different from a new hire from India who is different again from Joe from Georgia (the state) down in accounting. People are different, and people of widely varying backgrounds can be especially different. Knowing how to effectively communicate with customers and employees of divergent cultures is an essential skill.

Critical Skills Nonprofit’s cross-cultural communication training will provide the knowledge and skills needed to shape messages for maximum effectiveness and help the other party understand and be interested in what you are saying. Understanding the practical differences between cultures and backgrounds can help you make sense of an interconnected world.

Conflict Resolution

Organizational disputes and interpersonal conflict can severely disrupt work effectiveness and divide people. But some types of organizational disputes can be helpful, such as conflict that challenges a problematic status quo or disputes that produce early warning that something is wrong. Conflict requires careful attention and thoughtful management. The conflict resolution training will help people develop the skills required to make conflicts constructive as frequently as possible and limit the damage when things go wrong and disputes escalate. Participants will learn how to move on after strenuous disagreements and how keep conflict from tarnishing  important work relationships.

Generational Change and Demographic Trends

It is a cliché, but indisputably true: The world is changing fast. A working understanding of society’s changing population dynamics can go a long way towards helping you make sense of a complicated and constantly changing world. Although the world is not prone to simplistic reduction, it is eminently possible to identify important patterns and trends and use these insights to your advantage. Success in a shifting world requires understanding underlying population trends and their potential impacts.

CSN’s Generational Change and Demographic Trends class seeks to demystify how issues like birth rate, ethnicity, life expectancy, and generational groups (such as Baby Boomers, Generation X, and so forth) exert inexorable pressure on the economic and political fabric of U.S. society. Using data from the 2010 United States Decennial Census and other relevant sources, the trends course will help you get a handle on the underlying patterns of our changing world. The world is changing. Stay on top of things.

Communicating with Difficult People

Some people are simply hard to talk to. Critical Skills Nonprofit’s difficult people training will help you identify common types of difficult communicators (like people who love to argue, serial arguers, emotionally volatile people, and stubborn people), and provide countermeasures for talking with them. Difficult people can cause endless frustration and make for some of our most problematic interactions.

Our natural  inclination is to do everything in our power not to communicate with difficult people, which can lead to a host of organizational problems depending on who the difficult person is and what role in the organization he or she plays. Worse, conversations with difficult communicators are highly prone to damaging escalation because difficult communication is frustrating communication—it is much easier to fly off the handle when you are dealing with a difficult person. CSN’s difficult people training will provide countermeasures to neutralize difficult people and offer an array of strategies for dealing with such challenging communicators.

Communicating Difficult Messages

Some messages we simply hate to give. The message may be highly negative, extremely sensitive, incredibly consequential, or maddeningly complex. Any one of these reasons can make communication very challenging, and just to keep things interesting, a message can trip many of these reasons all at once. For example, laying someone off is simultaneously negative, sensitive, and consequential. The dilemma is that the very messages that are the most difficult to deliver can also be the most important.

Critical Skills Nonprofit’s communicating difficult messages training will help you gain confidence and competence in your ability to deliver difficult messages. Because there is often a great deal at stake, knowing how to sensitively yet accurately convey difficult messages is a hallmark of smart, successful communication.

Employment Interviewer Skills 

(Note: This training is for nonprofit organizations.) Is there any way to eliminate all hiring mistakes? No, but having a good structure in place for conducting employment interviews and providing sound training for interviewers can go a long way towards helping the right people end up in your organization. See the results quickly in who you hire and over time in a declining turnover rate.

Getting the right people in your nonprofit organization surely matters. Asking the right questions, and asking them correctly are central to making good hiring decisions. Strengthen your employment interviews and see more of the right people end up in your organization.

Employment Interview Skills for Job Seekers

For the job seeker, preparing for an employment interview can frequently mean the difference between a job offer and a polite decline. One of the most important things you can do make a strong impression is to have concrete examples of your work experiences put into narrative form and use these examples in response to employment interview questions. To have a good interview, you need to be able to convincingly tell your best professional achievements in narrative (story) form.

In this training, job seekers will learn some essential interview questions that they need to have answers for. And participants will also learn how to answer interview questions concisely and in a manner that holds the interviewer’s attention. An interested interviewer makes for good employment interview. Figure out out how to keep them interested and prepare for important job interviews by strengthening your employment interview skills.

Professional Networking Skills

While it is tempting to focus on adding increasing numbers of people to your professional network, for most of us a far more meaningful investment is to optimize existing network contacts and develop strategies to more fully tap into our network’s potential. Most professional networks are seriously underused and quite capable of generating far more career-enhancing leads, contacts, and assistance. Critical Skills Nonprofit’s professional network training will help you tend the network you already have, develop ways to use your network more effectively, and cover tips for sensibly growing your network by adding relevant contacts.