How This Course Will Enable You To Master Professional Conversations
Effective conversations are the basis for all relationships, both personal and professional. Yet few of us are ever taught how to have effective conversations. We've designed the curriculum for this course to teach you what we consider to be four of the core skills of highly effective conversations:
- Active Listening
The course is designed to take you step by step through the theory and context behind each of these core skills, teaching you the mindset, behaviour, body language and spoken language essential for your success.
For a taste of what to expect scroll down to the course curriculum where you can preview one of the lectures from each of the skills. These are designed to show you how The Success Methods Academy provides learning that is full of practical advice and models to support you in the real world.
All of this is delivered in a simple and easy to follow format. Some of the highlights of this course are:
3 hours of high-quality lectures, broken up into 4 focused modules. The lectures combine original and academic theory with proven best practices. These easy to apply methods will quickly become something you utilise both professionally and in day to day life.
12 development exercises. Practice all the skills on your own, at work or with friends and family using our structured and ready to go exercises to enable you to fully develop each of the skills.
- Unlimited access to the course. Watch any time and on any device. You can watch the course from your mobile device, computer, or tablet, and you’re free to learn at your own pace. Your progress is automatically marked as you take the course. Revisit lessons whenever you want.
In a professional setting our curiosity and our willingness to display that curiosity by asking questions is almost always a critical factor in our success. Without questions we can't learn about our customers or our colleagues unless they choose to explicitly and clearly spontaneously give us all the information we need.
There are three key elements to the best listening, the first one is to be active, ensuring you are contributing without having to be overly vocal, the second is to be focused on drawing out the key elements from the speaker, and third is to be concentrating your attention, not letting your mind wander away. These three core elements are the basis for understanding the meanings expressed by a speaker.
Not only can regular, short summaries save time, they can also avoid the need to go back over conversations, to avoid repeating messages and to avoid the scenario where a meeting ends without the formal conclusions that would have ensured the value of the meeting. Summaries can increase understanding, yours and that of your conversation partners, who will value your ability to take in what they are saying and demonstrate that by re-presenting it accurately.
The word challenging can be mis-interpreted, we often refer to someone or a to situation that is difficult as challenging but that’s not what we mean here. In this case we’re talking about an activity, not a characteristic. Challenging in a professional situation means the process by which we interact with a customer in a spirit of positive dialogue in order to question their thinking or beliefs in order to assist them to derive insights, ideas, options and avoid pitfalls in their situation.
Why Is Mastering Professional Conversations So Important?
Conversations are a highly effective mechanism to gather, share and exchange information in a professional setting. The interactive nature of the conversation presents an opportunity for rapid, timely and dynamic discussion to, for example:
- Develop a high level a strategy
- Understand an issue preventing progress from being made
- Reach agreement on any decision that needs to be taken
- In fact the list is almost endless.
And so the skills to have effective conversations are a vital part of our professional toolkit.
This might seem like an obvious statement but in our experience it’s not obvious from one crucial perspective: namely the amount of time devoted to mastering the skills of effective conversation.
A survey of employers noted that the ability to engage in conversation was one of the most highly valued communication competencies. But as the survey author notes very little time is actually spent on conversation skills in professional communication training.
What this tells us is that improving conversation skills presents everyone with an opportunity to enhance their effectiveness in a professional situation. While improving your skills as a conversationalist is likely to spill over into your personal life in a significant way our primary focus on this course is how to optimise these skills for success in a professional environment.
Our core skills are the building blocks of any effective conversation. They fit together seamlessly to provide you with all that you need to have highly effective conversations. Master all of these and you’ll achieve two key benefits.
For yourself you’ll have a new found ability to dig deeper into any issue, to better understand any challenge, strategy, problem or opportunity, to strengthen relationship and to project a polished and professional image
For your conversation partners, be that a customer, a colleague, a client, your boss, someone you manage, a prospect or someone to whom you are providing a service, you will become someone who they see as clearly interested in them, their challenges, their opportunities, issues and strategies. They’ll also find that you help them work things out, to arrive at solutions they may not have reached themselves, solution that in all probability improve on what would have been achieved with a less effective conversation partner.
Your Instructors - Ian Robson & Matt Rumins
Created by two industry veterans of customer success with a combined 50 years of experience in professional roles from individual contributor to c-suite executive. Matt and Ian have worked in leading roles at some of the world's premier organisations including Oracle, Salesforce, Siebel, Barclays Bank, Bio-Rad and a variety of startups including Intradiem, SignalDemand and Fuse Universal.
You can read all about us here (you'll need to scroll down a bit) ➡️ Ian & Matt
- Introducing The Questioning Skill (0:49)
- An Academic Defines The Question (1:51)
- Why This Skill Matters (Curiousity Powers The Question) (1:51)
- Examples Of This Skill (1:48)
- Useful Theory (What Pub Quizzes Can Tell Us) (5:18)
- Questioning In Context (3:05)
- The Right Mindset For Questioning (1:47)
- Questioning - Quiz 1
- Behaviours To Enhance Questioning Effectiveness (7:35)
- Body Language For Great Questioning (1:18)
- Questioning & Wording (8:03)
- Questioning - Quiz 2
- Tips For Questioning Virtually (1:52)
- Developing Your Questioning Skills (2:04)
- Introducing The Active Listening Skill (0:28)
- Our Definition (How Do You Score?) (1:12)
- Why This Skill Matters (Hint, It's All About Time) (1:27)
- Examples Of This Skill (3:29)
- Useful Theory (Avoiding The Accidental) (2:38)
- Active Listening Context (3:13)
- Moving From A Passive To Active Mindset (7:18)
- Active Listening Mindset - A New Model (7:16)
- Active Listening - Quiz 1
- Behaviour & Active Listening - A New Model (6:14)
- Behaviour & Active Listening - People And The Environment (7:52)
- Behaviour & Active Listening - Manage Your Mind (3:53)
- Body Language To Encourage The Speaker (3:32)
- Words In Active Listening (2:32)
- Active Listening - Quiz 2
- Listening When Working Virtually (2:34)
- Developing Your Active Listening Skills (2:53)
- Introducing The Summarising Skill (1:02)
- Our Definition : The Key Points Of A Summary (2:03)
- Why This Skill Matters (Understanding Is Everything) (2:47)
- Examples Of This Skill (2:46)
- Useful Theory (A New Model) (5:16)
- Summarising In Context (3:18)
- Summarising - Quiz 1
- An Information Gathering Mindset (2:41)
- Using Mindset To Keep Your Summary On Track (3:46)
- Summarising Behaviours (What Are The Rules?) (2:31)
- Body Language To Support Your Summarising (2:41)
- Summarisinq - Quiz 2
- Words In Summarising - The Set Up (2:59)
- Words In Summarising - The Delivery (2:49)
- Words In Summarising - The Confirmation (3:02)
- Tips For Summarising Virtually (1:32)
- Summarising - Quiz 3
- Developing Your Skills In Summarising (3:02)
- Introducing The Challenging Skill (0:56)
- Our Definition Of A Highly Positive Technique (1:39)
- Why This Skill Matters (It's A Complex Picture) (1:42)
- Examples Of This Skill (2:18)
- Useful Theory : 3 Models (5:23)
- Challenging - Quiz 1
- The Context For Challenging (5:04)
- Getting Into The Challenger Mindset (6:11)
- Your Challenger Mindset : Delivering A Challenge (4:43)
- The Behaviours Of A Challenger (4:05)
- Challenging - Quiz 2
- Body Language While Challenging (2:15)
- Challenging And Words : It's Not Personal! (2:34)
- Challenging In The Virtual World (1:46)
- Challenging - Quiz 3
- Developing The Challenger Skillset (2:44)
- An Introduction To Small Talk (1:41)
- The Importance Of Talking Small (4:08)
- 5 Small Talk Golden Nuggets (2:49)
- Small Talk : Big In The Virtual World (2:44)
- Introducing Scene Setting (There's A Pun In There Somewhere!) (2:47)
- Your Role In Scene Setting (5:00)
- Setting The Scene (1:39)
- Setting A Virtual Scene (1:35)
Hear From Some Of Our Students
I thoroughly enjoyed Mastering Professional Conversations, the course is full of very credible advice and is delivered in a very approachable manner.
I found the course had an ideal balance of theory, and practical skills that can be immediately practised in the real world. It allowed me to reflect on my own practice and apply it to the professional context in which I work.
Overall I found the course very interesting, and enjoyed the way Ian guided me through the lectures.
Having been in various customer facing roles in the last twenty-four years I believe the skills and tactics highlighted in the course are wholly applicable to any type of role which involves interacting with other people, customers, partners or colleagues.
What I found most useful was taking the time to step back to consider each of the skills in isolation. This allowed me to think about scenarios or occurrences when I could or should have employed the skills.
Having taken the "Mastering Professional Conversations" course I feel invigorated and excited to put what I have learnt, and re-learnt into practice.
Having done plenty of courses which are dry, monotonous and difficult to stay engaged in, this pulled me straight in. I’m currently working towards being an accredited coach and asking the right questions is the cornerstone of any coaching conversation, or any conversation really!
I also loved the theory sections, I found them really interesting and I’m sure others would too. I specifically enjoyed how everything was backed up by the theory, good examples and demonstrations. This is a really welcome and creative way to look at how to garner information and so much more than any online course I’ve ever experienced.