South West Training Blog

Articles, tips, guides and blogs around business skills, training, professional courses and development in addition to South West relevant news.

Which Communication Skills are Most Important in the Workplace?

Which Communication Skills are Most Important in the Workplace?
We know that effective communicators get more done, more effectively, with less stress and better outcomes We've listed some of the most important communication skills in the workplace, in bite-size chunks!. These skills will go a long way to helping you build successful relationships with your colleagues, gain trust and to perform above and beyond your work objectives: Friendliness: We are more likely to do things for people that we like and respect. Being friendly with people will naturally gain colleague trust and respect and ensure more positive relationships. Effective communicators take the time to show an interest in their colleagues and to...
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Management or Leadership? What's the Difference?

Management or Leadership? What's the Difference?
A common question asked by newly appointed managers attending our Management and Leadership training courses is, ‘What’s the difference between management and leadership?’. It’s an important question as the difference is not a mere case of pedantics. Although the two concepts work hand in hand, there are important differences between the two terms, which managers need to understand, if they are to appreciate when they should be leading and when they should be managing. Essentially, the difference between leadership and management is that leaders inspire people to follow them, whilst managers have people working for them.  To help describe this further,...
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Essential Cross-Cultural Skills for the Dorset Tourism Industry

Essential Cross-Cultural Skills for the Dorset Tourism Industry
Dorset is beautiful – in fact, it is so beautiful that the tourism industry attracts almost half a million foreign tourists a year and contributes just under £230 million a year to the Dorset economy. The growing attraction of Dorset as a holiday destination is clearly evident in the increasing numbers of cruise ships docking at Portland Port, with Dorset bound tourists doubling from 30,000 to 60,000 from the previous year. With 80% of cruise ships’ passengers choosing to stay in Dorset (and hence contribute to the economy), the Dorset tourist industry has every reason to be excited. To capitalise upon...
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Five Traits of a Successful Sales Person

Five Traits of a Successful Sales Person
Excellent salespeople are like gold dust. Businesses with a detailed understanding of what it takes to do well in sales, use this understanding to build high performing sales teams that consistently win business and drive company success. So what does it take to be a winning salesperson? Below, we have outlined the most important traits: Trait Number 1: Passion From prospecting to closure, passion is an essential driver across all elements of the sales cycle. Passion is emotionally contagious and a salesperson, passionate about the product or service, will, no doubt, pique the interest of their prospect. Likewise, a passionate approach...
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It’s not just a beautiful place, Dorset has some of the best companies to work for in the UK!

It’s not just a beautiful place, Dorset has some of the best companies to work for in the UK!
There’s a good reason why our training company is headquartered in Dorset – and that is, that along with other parts of the South West, we believe that Dorset is one of the most beautiful places in the UK. A vibrant county with entrepreneurs, multinationals and small family businesses bustling together against the backdrop of a stunning landscape, it’s fair to say that Dorset is the place to be! Adding to the many reasons to celebrate Dorset, is research carried out the by the Indeed Job Search website, which has ranked a number of Dorset companies in the top ten list of...
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Tips to secure employee buy-in to company training programmes

Tips to secure employee buy-in to company training programmes
Working with businesses across the South West, it’s fair to say that securing employee buy-in to company training programmes is a common challenge for many learning and development staff. The attitudes of reluctant trainees are typically rooted in past experiences, such as previous enrolment on poorly scoped training programmes, working within a company culture that devalues training, or enrolment on courses that were a bad fit for their role. As most learning and development staff realise, these attitudes can be incredibly damaging due to their ‘contagious’ nature. Not only do these attitudes serve as self-fulfilling for the negative learner when attending...
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Mindfullness and Training

Mindfullness and Training
Janet Street-Porter gave her views on ‘Mindfulness’ meditation in the Daily Mail this week. At the risk of ‘outing’ my love of a good trashy read when I’m drinking my coffee first thing in the morning, I was caught by the title: ‘Can Mindfulness really make you Live longer’? It caught my eye as ‘mindfulness’ is a term which is increasingly quoted on public forums. As a concept, it’s taken on a life of its own and it’s bandied about by psychologist, therapists, government bodies, NHS and celebrities alike. From a training perspective, mindfulness as a subject has started to dominate the training...
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Make your Training Company Tender Questions Relevant

Make your Training Company Tender Questions Relevant
Part of my role as a Training Coordinator at Training South West is to tender for training contracts within the Dorset, Cornwall, Devon and Somerset areas. Although the initial documentation phase can be rather painful at times, a number of businesses use this phase as a basis to select companies who perform well against criteria to take part in a subsequent face to face process. I really enjoy this part of the process as it provides a fantastic opportunity to increase my exposure to the diverse range of South West businesses and I’ve met some really interesting people because of it....
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Is Financial Illiteracy Costing you Dearly?

Is Financial Illiteracy Costing you Dearly?
According to research by the think tank ‘IPPR’, British people love going it alone. They estimate that over 14% of us now work for ourselves.  There’s clearly a huge attraction to working independently (not least being able to manage your own holidays and working times) but the realities of being a sole worker without the backing of all the functions that typically support a larger business can be tough. Not only does the individual need to excel professionally within their chosen specialism but they also need to be adept at marketing, sales, administration systems and processes, website management, IT, HR and finance....
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Calling on South West Businesses to Accommodate Remote Working during the Winter Months

Calling on South West Businesses to Accommodate Remote Working during the Winter Months
I am fortunate enough to be abroad and working at the moment and I am not looking forward to coming back to Dorset, which my family have written to say is already becoming rather cold. I wrote an article recently on behalf of Training South West which urges businesses in the region to allow more people to avoid the nightmare of commuting during winter months and accommodate remote working arrangements.  For some people it's essential that they attend the work place but for many others it's not critical to their role at all.  They can probably get a far better job...
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Our Dedicated Somerset Training Venue

Our Dedicated Somerset Training Venue
Training South West has traditionally delivered its training from a dedicated training venue in Crewkerne, Somerset with beautiful, light airy training suites and great facilities. Delegates have always commented on the rooms as allowing a pleasurable space in which to learn. Due to the way in which we work with our clients and the broad area covered across the South West, we have decided that dedicated training venues have value but that they are not always the right solution for our clients.  Why?Our clients do not necessarily have the luxury of time to enable them to travel to a training destination...
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How well do you Performance Manage your Team?

How well do you Performance Manage your Team?
For those of us, fortunate enough to have worked under great managers early in our career, we rarely forget them and aspire towards their management attributes as we progress within our careers. I recall a conversation not too long ago with members of the team in which we discussed the ‘best managers’ for whom we’d worked and one colleague in particular was adamant that all her management skills were learnt from the manager that she held in such high esteem. She remained connected with him and would often approach him if in need of management advice or mentoring. As such, he...
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