Improving Communication Skills Improving communication skills

The Huthwaite Improving Communication Skills programme is aimed at anyone whose professional life involves making a case to others, finding solutions to problems in a group setting, handling potentially contentious issues or people, building and managing a successful team. The programme provides insight into the underlying research, a full first-hand understanding of the verbal behaviour categories and their application.

Verbal Behaviour Analysis (VBA) is the research and training methodology that underpins all Huthwaite programmes and aims to give you the skills to behave as closely as possible to our validated models of successful people achieving successful outcomes.

Consistent research and practice over the past 40 years have demonstrated, in action, that the verbal behaviours people use in commercial and internal interactions significantly affect the outcome. VBA focuses the skills around an objective measure of progress, increases the self-awareness of the practitioners, and correlates strongly to successful results.

“It was enlightening to be able to identify the different attributes of the people in a room. Learning how to be able to interact with each individual to get the best out of them and how to contribute to get the best from a meeting is invaluable. I found the Behaviour Analysis fascinating. Understanding how to structure your input and manage your own contributions and those of others, to achieve a positive outcome is really beneficial.”
Ian Gaitley - Head of Sales, Net Evidence


By the end of the Improving Communication Skills programme participants will:
  • have analysed the strengths and weaknesses of their present interactive style for persuading and influencing
  • be able to recognise the main VBA categories and understand how best to use them
  • have applied the behaviours in simulations with the other delegates
  • have applied the behaviours to situations based on their actual real-world challenges
  • be able to choose what behaviours to change in order to be more effective in communicating
  • appreciate that flexibility within a group dynamic is important
  • have insights about taking risks
  • have an increased awareness of the different messages emerging from their style of communication
  • develop core communication skills to apply in their real world.

Content - Day one

  • Raising awareness of self and others.
  • How to work co-operatively rather than competitively.
  • Introduction to Persuasion.
  • The principle of verbal communication skills, including elements such as Trust, Power, Common Ground, and Objective Setting.
  • Introduction of the Huthwaite Behaviour Categories: Initiating, Reacting and Clarifying.
  • Benchmarking delegates’ current persuasion styles, and how to use them.
  • Detailed behavioural feedback and improvement pathway for each delegate.

Content – Day Two

The second day of the Improving Communication Skills programme is flexible and depends on the audience and their particular objectives. Here are typical examples of the modules:

  • A programme to help your people more effective at persuading and influencing their colleagues, and people outside the organisation, to see their point of view and act accordingly.
  • A programme for delegates who participate in – and maybe also chair – both informal and informal meetings, to become more effective.
  • A programme for managers and others who have to deal with people whose behaviour, attitudes and actions make them difficult to work with.

Examples of optional modules for specific skills could include: chairing meetings, coaching and reviewing, leading teams, handling difficult people and situations, managing assessments, selling a strategy to colleagues, and more.

Methodology & practical issues

The programme comprises inputs, exercises with objective feedback, and opportunities for real world application. Delegates work in small groups and pairs to gain a practical understanding of the verbal behaviours and how they can be applied in different situations. The Improving Communication Skills programme is delivered by two Huthwaite trainers for a maximum of 12 delegates.

Wherever possible, we seek to incorporate into the training the real cases that are affecting your organisation here and now. 

Additional training days can be incorporated depending on the number and complexity of the issues you are seeking to resolve.