Communicating Up

New and experienced supervisors alike sometimes selectively communicate with their up-line manager. There are many reasons for holding back information, but it is dangerous to the team, department and organization. This course helps supervisors gain confidence and skill to deliver messages, make recommendations or share challenges with their manger. Supervisors learn what’s needed to prepare for and to present information effectively to their manager and how to respond to their managers preferred communication style for greatest impact.


  • Delivery Methods: Classroom, online or blended
    Timing: 4 hours and 45 minutes including 30 minutes of suggested breaks.
  • Custom Versions: Office, Industrial and Healthcare included in each facilitator kit.
  • Class Size: 8-21
  • College Credit: All of Vital Learnings courses are pre-approved for college level credit.
  • Online Timing: on average, learners spend 60 minutes 
  • LMS: All courses are SCORM compliant. Hosted through your LMS or ours
  • Intended audience: First line supervisors, team leaders, managers
  • Reinforcement: two kinds are build into each module
  • Certification: There is no requirement. 
  • Train-the-trainer: on-demand TTT’s available for all modules.

Course Objectives:

  • Identify the medium, frequency and amount of detail needed to successfully communicate with your manager.
  • Craft your communication with your manager to address his/her interests and fit his/her communication style.
  • Come prepared for the meeting with a clearly stated objective, answers to anticipated questions and potential solutions.
  • Support your objective with facts.
  • Use the Communicating Up Skill Points to plan and conduct a meeting with your manager.

Skill Points:

  1. Open: State your objective in a style and format preferred by your manager.
  2. Clarify: Detail your objective and support it with facts.
  3. Seek/Share: Anticipate your manager’s questions and have answers prepared.
  4. Agree: Provide potential solutions for your manager to consider.
  5. Close: Summarize and confirm the next steps.
"We get very positive feedback from our people after this training. They like the practical way the skills are taught, and with the exercises and role plays they learn to apply the skills in a safe environment before applying them on the job.”
Keith Riggs, VP
JA Tractor Company

Check out these samples:

Download demo workbook
Sample Trouble Shooting Guide

For the Facilitator:

For the Participant:

  • Facilitator kits- everything needed to facilitate this course
  • On-demand train-the-trainer with tips, best practices, enhancements and alternate ways to deliver activities
  • Facilitator level access to the Vital Hub- jogger card templates, trouble shooting guides, pre-course sample letter template, reinforcement sample letter template,  access to the various versions of video, and more.
  • Participant workbook – in digital or print versions
  • 48 Hour reinforcement tool – reinforces what’s been learned in first 48 hours following training
  • Vital Boost- six weeks of reinforcement questions with a leaderboard to compare scores
  • Participant level access to tools in the Vital Hub such as reproducible worksheets to put what has been learned into practice and trouble shooting guides, other job aids,  and more.


Applications for this course:

Reinforce DiSC with this course:

  1. Brand new team leader or supervisor, or lower level manager.
  2. Team leaders, supervisors, managers who have missed basic supervisory training along the way.
  3. Team leaders who are experience frequent turnover, conflict on their teams, lawsuits, or any issues that requires them to call upon HR to their team.
  4. A great number of issues team leaders bring to HR are due to a lack of basic supervisory skills. If you want to reduce the time HR is spending doing the work of the supervisor, the Leadership Essential Series is a perfect choice.
  5. If your organization has previously introduced DiSC to supervisors, it can become a thread through these courses. It can also be brought into the skill practice in each course.


Key Concepts – “Your Manager’s Communication Profile” (11-A)

    • Discuss the DiSC profile of your manager

Key Concepts – “How Would You Handle It?” (13-A)

    • Integrate the DiSC profile of the manager in the exercise. At the end, discuss how the DiSC profile impacts the communication.

Skill Practice – “Skill Practice #2” (76-A)

    • People read the managers style. Ensure the skill practice factors this into the exercise. Have coach not only provide feedback on the model, but on how well the supervisor communicated to their manager, given DiSC style.

Class introduction

  • Open the course
  • 30 Second video message to your manager

Key Concepts

  • Communication style
  • Communication style situations
  • Communicating up best practices
  • Your managers communication profile
  • How would you handle it?

Skill Points

  • Introduction to the skill points
  • What would you say?

Foundational Skills

  • Overcoming obsticals

Positive model

  • Introduce positive model
  • Training new skills positive model video
  • Coaching existing skills positive model video

Skill Practice

  • Skill Practice #1 Preparation
  • Skill Practice #1 Coaching
  • Skill Practice #1
  • Skill Practice #1 Feedback
  • Skill Practice #2 Preparation & Coaching
  • Skill Practice #2
  • Skill Practice #2 Feedback
  • Skill practice debrief


  • 48 hour reinforcement
  • Vital Boost


  • Review achievement path
  • Close the class
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