PDC – Preparing for Difficult Conversations

Course Name: PDC - Preparing for Difficult Conversations

Learning outcomes
In this course, you will learn how to:
• use planning tools to help you clarify your thoughts and set objectives
• use self-awareness to keep your own emotions and language in check
• use key listening and questioning techniques to build trust and empathy
• use positive body language to defuse conflict and support your verbal message/s
• modify your communication strategies for difficult phone conversations
• appreciate the role cultural differences can play in derailing effective communication
• set clear boundaries and guidelines for acceptable behaviour and language
• follow-up appropriately from a difficult conversation.
As with all our ACIM short courses, this is a very interactive program. Our facilitators use
well-paced presentations, practical group activities and discussions, and individual planning
exercises to help you stay focused and engaged right throughout your training. You can
also take part in optional role plays, if you would like extra assistance in developing your
skills. Many participants find that practising their responses is a helpful way of building
How can you put your new skills to good use?
This course is designed to be hands-on and very practical so you can apply your new skills
at work and benefit from them immediately. In particular, it will help you to improve your
planning, communication, problem-solving, leadership and resilience skills.

Course Code: PDC
Training Plans: Preparing for Difficult Conversations

This course is suitable for anyone whose work involves giving unwelcome news or
potentially upsetting information to colleagues, clients or members of the public. The skills
are particularly relevant for supervisors, team leaders and new or aspiring managers.
You’ll be taught how to use a range of effective preparation techniques and advanced
communication skills to help you plan what you want or need to say, as well confidenceboosting
strategies to help you manage those conversations professionally, rather than
delaying or avoiding them. Some of the topics you’ll cover include: understanding the cost of
doing nothing; planning your opening statement; the importance of timing and choosing the
right venue; using positive body language to support your message; understanding cultural
differences in communication; strategies to help with difficult phone conversations; and
setting clear boundaries and guidelines for acceptable behaviour and languag

Units of Competence:
CodeUnit NameType
PDC   Preparing for Difficult Conversations