Communication Course: Difficult Workplace Conversations

Communication Course: Difficult Workplace Conversations

Communication short courses in Sydney, open to everyone.

Improve your communication skills with our Communication courses in Sydney.

Learn Communication with our Communication courses in Sydney - short courses open to everyone.

This communication course focuses on difficult conversations in the workplace and will provide you with a clear framework for facilitating dialogues for difficult situations. The aim of this communication course is to empower you with the tools required to manage difficult conversations in a supportive and constructive way, ensuring that you no longer feel the need to avoid them. This communication course will explore a skills framework specifically designed for handling difficult conversations in the workplace. This communication skills framework has wide applicability that is also relevant for mediation, negotiation and conflict resolution in one-on-one or team settings.

People working together in any context will inevitably experience disagreement, conflict or will find themselves at cross-purposes. These interactions can lead to difficult conversations and unresolved issues that fester and ignite often when it is least expected. No one looks forward to initiating a difficult conversation or to address performance or sensitive matters with staff or supervisors. Many people avoid confronting tough issues for fear of getting it wrong or being perceived as confrontational. This communication course will support leaders, managers and staff to improve their communication skills to allow them to negotiate these differences and disagreements more effectively. This course will allow you to engage and respond to colleagues in a more concise and focused way, and eliminate problems before they arise.

Learning Outcomes

At the completion of this communication course you will learn to:

  1. Apply a communication skills framework for addressing communication challenges and opportunities at work with a detailed set of guidelines.
  2. Know if, when and where to instigate a difficult conversation with your boss, peer or direct reporting staff.
  3. Give the other person a stake in the outcome and avoid a zero-sum outcome.
  4. Manage your counterpart’s expected outcomes.
  5. Create strategies that employ an optimal mix of communication channels and techniques for reaching desired audiences, and which deliver measurable outcomes.
  6. Practise communication in a transparent and ethical way in diverse contexts for specific purposes.

Course Content

This communication course will cover the following content:

  • Analysis of Difficult Conversations.
  • Reasons why conversations become difficult.
  • Communication skills framework designed for handling difficult conversations to enhance your skills.
  • Explore options for sample scenarios of difficult conversations to assist you in giving powerful, positive feedback.
  • Developing professional and personal boundaries.
  • Summarise strategies and problems to watch out for.
  • Take home framework to achieve conversational outcomes.

Intended Audience

This communication course is suitable for managers, supervisors and team leaders who are interesting in improving their communication both at work or in their professional lives. This communication course is designed for individuals who have to communicate in challenging situations and those who are looking to benefit from the implementation of sound communication techniques.

Delivery Style

This communication course will be delivered as an interactive workshop consisting of an instructor-led lecture, group and individual activities. This approach allows participants to work through concepts introduced by the instructor in an application-focused teaching environment. Participants will challenge their understanding of the concepts and consider their application once back in their individual workplace.

Course Prerequisites

This communication course has no prerequisites and is open to all members of the public.

About your instructor

Ann Brewer

Ann Brewer

Professor Ann Brewer is the Dean, University of Newcastle, Sydney. Her career has spanned organisational behaviour, psychology, education and business as a researcher, lecturer, and author. Her research expertise is people at work including conflict, change, leadership, commitment, stress as well as gender.

Ann is an accredited executive coach with more than 20 years of experience enhancing the performance of individuals, teams and organisations. In that capacity she designs and develops coaching programs for whole-of-organisations as well as 1:1 coaching consultations. She begins with establishing a foundation for each client to clarify their professional aims and values for developing and sustaining leadership resilience. Her coaching strategy is focused on leadership, relationship and culture building as well as dealing with thorny issues and conducting difficult conversations.

Ann’s professional background incorporates diverse programs and initiatives for individual development, team building, organisation design, and facilitation. Her practical approach to leadership and organisation development is derived from her own senior leadership positions.

Her work has been applied in diverse industry sectors such as business, education, industrial relations, human resource management, health administration, public policy, transport and logistics; banking and mining. She has led commercial facing entities including a start-up to success.


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Course Features

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The University of Newcastle, Sydney Campus is a leading provider of short courses in Australia, with industry qualified and experienced educators that bring up-to-date real-world skills directly to the classroom.