South West Training Blog

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

Hero or Villain? How would you be Portrayed in an Online Customer Care Story?

Hero or Villain? How would you be Portrayed in an Online Customer Care Story?
The Somerset County Gazette featured an article on 24th September outlining a family's disgust at the accommodation they were placed in when visiting a holiday site in Burnham on Sea (a seaside resort in Somerset). The family report what can only be described as a nightmare for any family who has spent money in the anticipation of a relaxing holiday.  Stomach turning photographs and the family's account of cigarette ends under the bed, an ants' nest, filthy hob,insect clad skylight and a lack of safety equipment all add to the horror of the story. To add further damage, the report outlines...
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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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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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Do Blanket Training Policies Work?

Do Blanket Training Policies Work?
Training approaches differ greatly across companies and with experience working across large corporates through to small privately owned companies, I’ve found that the value and nature of the respective policies vary greatly in tandem. Within the corporate world, my experience has been that there is a tendency to ‘pin everything down’ – if it can’t be measured, quantified and reported on, then the attitude is that efficiencies are lacking.  With the luxury of ample training budgets, the corporate world has the ability to arrange regular training courses which are delivered by fantastic trainers.  One would assume that the courses would be...
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8 Essential Lessons the German Mannschaft Can Teach Every Business

8 Essential Lessons the German Mannschaft Can Teach Every Business
Last month we witnessed a breathtaking World Cup final which saw the Mannschaft (‘team’) win after a 24 year drought. As well as appearing in the World Cup finals eight times and having won the tournament four times, Germany is now the first European team to have won the cup on Latin American soil.  Clearly, the German Mannschaft is a fantastic team. After all, we can’t neglect the fact that they played against Argentina, a country which is - unlike Germany - not known for its team but for its star player, Messi, a.k.a “the best player in the world”.However, do...
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Managing Multicultural Teams: A Participant's Feedback

Managing Multicultural Teams: A Participant's Feedback
We ran a Managing Multicultural Teams open course on January 30th. We asked one of the participants to tell us about her experience of the open course – what was covered, what her key take-aways were, and how this experience will be applicable back into her role at a Bournemouth based, international NGO. What did the training cover? The training was nicely structured but also informal at the same time allowing us (attendees) to ask as many questions and share our own experiences as we went along throughout the day. The training started with looking at how culture affects business and leadership. ...
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Contagious Leadership – Emotional Intelligence and its impact on Team Performance

Contagious Leadership – Emotional Intelligence and its impact on Team Performance
In today’s business world, hard skills are no longer seen as the sole key to success. While in the past there was no room for emotions in the workplace and the importance of soft skills was largely underestimated, they have come to be considered as indispensable and well worth striving for – and rightly so, I believe. Just think about your own experiences. Wouldn’t you agree that your emotional state greatly influences your thoughts, attitude and behaviour and consequently, your personal wellbeing, your relationships and your performance both at work and in your private life? This is why Emotional Intelligence (EI),...
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Developing Soft Skills as a Manager Today

Developing Soft Skills as a Manager Today
Management and leadership as we know it have undergone a significant shift in recent years due to globalisation and the increasing need to work virtually and across time zone and cultures. Previously, a manager was seen as someone with largely specific technical/hard skills, today that perception of the role has largely developed. In last decade, and as the world is becoming an increasing ‘global marketplace’ (Lane 1997), human resource development has also taken on a more international outlook which means that the global talent search has focused increasingly on finding, developing and retaining those individuals with a specific skillset: self-efficacy, interpersonal...
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