Essential Skills of Communicating

What’s the cost of poor communication skills? The Society of Human Resource Management highlighted a study of 400 companies, each with 100,000 employees and found that the average loss in revenue to each was 62 million per year. Most communication errors have to do with a failure of pretty basic communication skills- the very skills that are featured in the Essential Skills of Communicating:

  • Craft clear and concise messages
  • Deliver messages designed for the team member
  • Listen to communicate
  • Manage non-verbal behaviors

The Essential Skills of Communicating is one of two foundational courses in the Leadership Essentials Series. It focuses on core practical skills leaders use every day. Furthermore, these skills are skills used in conjunction with other skills taught in this series. 

For example, if a team member approaches a supervisor with a complaint about fairness on the team and the team leader brushes it off, it is possible that this complaint will morph into other more challenging problems. The employee may quit and leave, or the employee may quit and stay! The employee may take their concern to the team and create a team rift that is larger and more complex than the original challenge. It is possible the team leader did not really listen to the team member’s concern to realize they needed to act and not brush off this challenge.

Course Features:

  • Delivery Methods: Classroom, online, or blended
  • Timing: 4 hrs 30 minutes (includes 30 minutes of scheduled breaks)
  • Custom Versions: Office, Industrial and Healthcare included in each facilitator kit
  • Class size: 8-21 participants
  • College Credit: ALL Vital Learning’s courses are accredited through the University of Phoenix.
  • 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.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Utilize an empowering and dynamic communication process to increase team members’ motivation and commitment.
  2. Construct and express clear and concise messages in both written and spoken communication.
  3. Deliver messages that address the interests of the listener.
  4. Make verbal and nonverbal communication congruent to reinforce the intent of messages.
  5. Use Reflecting, Probing, Supporting, Advising to demonstrate active listening to others.
  6. Provide the rationale for your feedback, whether to reinforce or improve performance.
Skill Points:
  1. Craft clear and concise messages
  2. Deliver messages designed for the team member
  3. Listen to communicate
  4. Manage non-verbal behaviors
"The examples provided were excellent and helped to explain the content more clearly. "
Vetrans Administration
Demo Workbook
Sample from 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, reproducible worksheets 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 that cover barriers that may occur when practicing skills with strategies

Application 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.

How will the Essential Skills of Communicating help our organization?

Essential Skills of Communicating will reduce the huge cost to organizations for the communication errors that take place each day by coming at communication errors from a variety of vantage points;

  •  It gives supervisors a window into their non-verbal behaviors impact on any face to face communication. 
  • It will help leaders consider the team member as they craft written or verbal communication
  • It will give leaders tools to listen and respond with empathy to team members concerns
  • It will provide some simple tools for providing feedback

Clear & Concise Communication – “Using Short Simple Words” (12-A, 12-B)

  • How the receiver’s DiSC profile impacts how you structure communication and word choice

Clear & Concise Communication – “Clear & Concise Speaking” (15-A, 15-B)

    • How the receiver’s DiSC profile changes the way you communicate

Messages Designed for the Team Member – “Self Interest & Empowerment” (17-A)

    • Integrate the context of personality profiles and how that impacts the way you design messages in the interest of the receiver.

Messages Designed for the Team Member – “Communicating Interest” (18-A)

    • Identify what DiSC profile Dan & Maura are and why.

Messages Designed for the Team Member – “Design with Interests in Mind Exercise” (19-A)

    • Assign the team members a DiSC profile. Change the DiSC profile for each scenario.  Ask how this affects how the message is crafted and delivered.

Impactful Feedback – “Feedback to Reinforce and Improve” (37-A, 37-B)

    • As you classify the feedback, also discuss how feedback might be given differently to different DiSC profiles.

Mastering the Essential Skills of Communicating – “What Would You Do Scenarios” (39-A)

  • Assign DiSC profiles to the team members in each scenario. Choose different profiles for each scenario.  Ask participants to incorporate this profile in their skill practice.  At the end, ask how the DiSC profile of the team member impacted how they approached the scenario.

Course Outline

Open the course

  • Attributes of great communication exercise
  • Class outcomes and skill points
  • Empowering leadership communication
  • The case of the shrinking team exercise

Clear and concise communication

  • “Say what?” exercise
  • Using short and simple words
  • Clear and concise speaking
  • Clear and concise writing

Messages designed for the team member

  • Self interest and empowerment
  • Communicating interest
  • Design with interest in mind exercise

Listen to Communicate

  • How to listen
  • The verbal aspect of listening exercise

Nonverbal communication

  • The power of nonverbal communication
  • Nonverbal and verbal agreement

Impactful Feedback

  • Feedback to reinforce and improve

Mastering the Essential Skills of Communicating

  • “What would you do?” scenarios


  • 48 hour reinforcement
  • Vital Boost


  • What did you learn? (A 30 second video call to your boss)



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