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The Oxford Group - A City & Guilds Group Business

Short courses

Some management skills are essential learning for all. We have a wide range of one-day solutions which focus on applying management theory to real-work challenges and scenarios.

What you get with The Oxford Group?

  • The guidance of a global organisation with more than 30 years’ experience honing key management and leadership skills for hundreds of clients and thousands of learners
  • A combination of tried-and-tested methods and new approaches informed by the latest research
  • Efficient delivery format and easy administration, so you get maximum impact with minimal disruption to your business activities
  • A competitive price with no hidden extras


Delivered by experts with specialist experience ‘in the field’. Ideal for senior leaders.


What our clients say

The programme was clear, concise and delivered the objectives it set out to deliver - what more do you want from a training course!

Programme participant

Informative and well presented… good use of practical examples and group work was enjoyable.

Programme participant

Short Courses

According to LinkedIn Workplace Learning Report 2018, 94% of employees say that they would stay at a company longer if it invested in their career development. Our short courses are perfect for building the skillsets of your managers and leaders.

Please browse for more details about each course.

    Behavioural interviewing

    Making sure interviewers across your organisation ask candidates the right questions and adopt a consistent approach is essential to attracting top talent.

    This workshop focuses on the practice of criteria-based behavioural interviewing, transforming the way interviewers observe and assess the performance of others in a wide variety of settings, helping them make better selection decisions.

    Core content

    • An introduction to behavioural interviewing
    • Developing a robust and appropriate selection process
    • Writing the role description and person specification
    • Designing effective opening and probing questions
    • Preparing and structuring the interview, practising observation and recording behavioural evidence
    • Practice interview sessions in small groups with focused feedback to sharpen key skills
    • Classifying and evaluating evidence gained

    Coaching skills

    The most effective managers are the ones that bring out the best in their colleagues.

    This workshop provides a thorough introduction to the skills and techniques of coaching others at work.  Participants learn a coaching framework useful in a variety of situations from short informal discussions to formal appraisal discussions.  This workshop will enable participants to help others to continuously improve – as well as themselves.

    Core content

    • Understanding the benefits, nature and role of coaching in a business context
    • Defining clear coaching outcomes and operating a balanced scorecard to measure progress
    • Introduction to The Oxford Group’s core coaching framework for formal and informal situations
    • Understanding the importance of both preview and review coaching
    • Developing a set of enabling beliefs, skills and behaviours to operate as an effective coach
    • Real coaching opportunities in small groups with focused feedback

    Facilitation skills

    Effective trainers, managers and team leaders know how valuable facilitation skills are to get the best from groups and individuals. 

    This workshop explores the methods, tools and techniques that encourage attitudinal and behavioural change, enabling participants to make a real contribution to their organisation through others.

    Core content

    • Understanding group dynamics
    • Group management – previewing and reviewing group sessions
    • The importance of non-verbal behaviour
    • Facilitating meetings – relationship with the group and the leader
    • Problem-solving techniques
    • Using the facilitation model of process, content and people
    • Role of the facilitator – knowing and adapting your personal styl
    • Giving and receiving feedbac
    • Practice sessions with focused feedback

    Influencing skills

    Being able to motivate, persuade and engage with colleagues is essential to achieving your goals.

    Participants of this workshop will be clearer and more confident about the outcomes they want to achieve, know more influencing techniques and be more able to understand and work with the needs of others.

    Core content

    • What is influencing?
    • Understanding your stakeholders
    • You and your influencing preferences
    • Personal influencing challenges—planning to influenc
    •  Group action learning
    • Uses a ‘Strength Deployment Inventory’ as a practical tool to inform influencing strategies

    Managing performance

    Knowing how to improve team and individual performance is perhaps the most important skill a manager can have.

    This workshop covers all the key learning and techniques for effectively managing the performance of others. It will enable participants to understand better the needs and motivations of others and use a range of practical tools and techniques to work with them to deliver great results.

    Core content

    • Working with The Oxford Group model, ‘Factors That Affect Performance’, applied to real work, people and situations
    • The keystones of performance – establishing clarity, setting objectives, exploring mutual expectations, giving effective feedback and measuring results
    • Exploring styles and behaviours to work effectively with others – balancing task and relationships
    • Getting the most from others – achieving empowerment through effective performance coaching
    • Practice sessions in small groups with focused feedback to hone skills in real time

    Presentation skills

    Many people find delivering a presentation a daunting prospect but ensuring that yours will hit the right notes improves impact and helps alleviate nerves.

    Our practical step-by-step approach to effective presentations covers all aspects of presenting in a business context. This workshop builds both individual preparation and confidence as well as introducing tools, techniques and tips to make the most of your presentation opportunities.

    Core content

    • Core presentation skills planning model
      • Determining the objective
      • Gathering relevant information
      • Editing your material
      • Planning a structure
    • Boosting your confidence, avoiding and handling nerves
    • Handling questions effectively
    • Generating interest and having an impact
    • Tips for using MS PowerPoint and visual aids
    • The power of rehearsal
    • How to ensure your presentation has impact and is memorable

    Dealing with ambiguity

    Being relaxed and confident when dealing with uncertainty will result in better business decisions.

    This workshop provides participants with an insight into their strengths and areas for development, as well as how to support their teams during ambiguity.

    Core content

    • Discovering your strengths and areas for development against the core competencies needed to be effective in ambiguity
    • Working with and understanding ‘The Ambiguity Toolkit’
    • Understanding which situations can be controlled and which can’t, and how to act accordingly
    • Understanding team and individual behaviours and how to work with them
    • Exploring what communication approaches are productive when dealing with ambiguity
    • Getting comfortable in taking decisions and moving on
    • Creating a personal action plan to use for reference beyond the workshop

    Managing change

    Poor leadership is widely acknowledged as the reason why most change programmes fail.

    This workshop highlights best practice in change management. We ask participants to bring with them some real examples of change situations to work on during the day.

    Core content

    • Personal impact of change
    • Creating readiness for change—why change?
    • Stakeholder analysis and engagement
    • Empathy and accountability
    • You and your influencing preferences
    • Change elevator speech
    • Beliefs and congruent communications
    • Handling resistance
    • Anchoring and leveraging change

    Leading multicultural & virtual teams

    The world is getting smaller. Technology has allowed more and more businesses to operate internationally, meaning teams can be spread over a significant geographical space. This can lead to isolation, lack of a sense of identity and cohesion— which all impact performance.

     This workshop, built on our practical experience of operating in more than 60 countries spread over five continents, introduces you to the frameworks and tools leaders need to overcome these challenges and create a high-performing remote team.

    Core content

    • Understanding what culture is and how it impacts the way we see ourselves and others
    • Handling different cultures and working styles
    • Understanding how differences can impact team performance (both positively and negatively)
    • Remote working and communicating effectively when you can’t be there (e.g. conference calls) and using the appropriate behaviour
    • Managing team performance through remote coaching and giving effective feedback in difficult situations with global teams
    • How to build team spirit
    • Techniques for creating and maintaining trust 
    • Behaviours of effective multicultural teams

    Storytelling for leaders

    The oral tradition of storytelling has always been a feature of human interaction but can also be used as a powerful business tool.

    This workshop boosts the awareness and potential of managers to consciously use storytelling as an effective means to translate business and personal messages so they inspire commitment and intelligent action.

    Core content

    • The power of stories and our deep shared heritage of storytelling
    • Understanding the power and potential of storytelling in a business context
    • The different kinds of stories and basic structures
    • Three main story formats:
      • Inspiring action - 'springboard'
      • Shaping culture - 'values in action'
      • Building credibility - 'who am I?’

    Executive presence and impact

    Have you ever wondered why some people can just walk into a room and get noticed?

    This masterclass breaks down the key elements of ‘executive presence’: demonstrating gravitas and self-confidence in day-to-day informal and formal situations, communicating clearly and expressively, being assertive without being aggressive or dominant, remaining in control and unflustered in difficult or unpredictable situations, to influence and make a positive impact on others while being yourself.

    Core content

    • Introductions with impact
    • Leadership and emotional intelligence
    • What is executive presence and how can I improve it?
    • My most powerful moment
    • Scenario preparation and coaching
    • Thinking strategically
    • Elevator pitch
    • Modelling
    • Positive state management
    • Handling stress – theory and practise
    • Real life scenarios
    • Action plan – putting it all together

    Key features

    • Self-assessment of recent situations in which positive presence and impact mattered for leadership effectiveness
    • Practical skills-building in a variety of business settings with immediate and focused feedback
    • A dedicated, specialist consultant with deep expertise in best practice and latest thinking
    • Self-assessment and expert feedback on appearance and stature
    • In-session focus on future real situations to preview and practice new tools and behaviours
    • Experiential learning at the three levels of head, hand and heart

    Leading complex change

    In the early 1950s Kurt Lewin, the grandfather of thinking on organisational change, created the three-step ‘freeze, unfreeze, refreeze’ model for businesses progressing through their desired states.

    Nearly 60 years later, the forces of technology, demographics, rising customer demands and changing workforce mean change has got tougher and businesses often find themselves in permanent ‘slush’ where change never completes before the next big shift comes along. Research shows two thirds of organisational change programmes failing to produce desired outcomes.

    This masterclass makes participants smarter in their role as a change agent and change leader, bringing them up to speed with the latest research, using case studies from across the world. 

    Core content

    • How we make sense of change (individually, collectively and organisationally)
    • New, contemporary models of leadership
    • Changing workforce patterns, attitudes and the ‘death of deference’
    • Shifting modes of social networking and sense-making
    • The compelling argument for employee engagement
    • Change and systemic organisational thinking
    • The differences between change and transition
    • Large group work
    • ‘Informal Coalitions’ and the power of the chats around the water cooler
    • ‘Nudge Theory’, ‘Fun Theory’ and other light touch approaches to change
    • Achieving involvement and buy-in at pace

    Key features

    • Incorporates leading-edge thinking in this field
    • Short burst theory input
    • Real-world exploration of change (case examples and participant challenges)
    • Creation of change support network
    • Takeaway hints and tips

    Leading for innovation and agility

    In surveys of CEOs across the globe, innovation and agility repeatedly appear as both a key ambition and a primary concern for the leadership. Both can deliver ‘game changing’ benefits, both can be destabilising and unwelcome forces.

    Modern organisations have to be quick, responsive and continually reinvent themselves if they are to keep their edge, delight their customers and ultimately survive. At the heart of innovation and agility lies change, experimentation and by design, some degree of failure – and leaders need to accommodate this. 

    This masterclass introduces leaders to the latest thinking and enables participants to apply it back in the workplace.  

    Core content

    • Taking stock of organisational agility
    • What is agility and does it matter? 
    • The environmental need for agility
    • A strategy for creating agile organisations
    • Innovation and dilemmas
    • Inspiring innovation
    • Resilience: strengthening your own and leading others
    • Blueprint for generating innovation and agility

    Key features

    • Incorporates leading-edge thinking in this field
    • Short burst theory input
    • Real-world exploration of change (case examples and participant challenges)
    • Takeaway hints and tips

    Leading your strategic environment

    The decisions taken by leaders such as restructuring, refocusing or upskilling their organisations are informed by the demands of the external environment. As technology advances and customers become more demanding – and powerful –  strategic decision making is increasingly challenging.

    Leaders must also operate in an ‘authorising environment’ where the likes of the media, competitors, the legal environment, the government can work for or against your organisation’s ambitions.

    To succeed as a leader in this turbulent context, leaders need to be crystal clear on their priorities, excel at engaging with and shaping the external environment and understand which features of the authorising environment need the most attention.

    This masterclass focuses on this central question of how best to frame the leader’s role in engaging with and influencing the strategic environment.  And it explores the importance of the speed, how frequent engagement should be and where attention needs to be. 

    Core content

    • Models of strategic leadership
    • The strategic triangle; organisational purpose, means and the authorising environment
    • The capability challenges of shaping the environment 
    • Raising your levels of influence and impact
    • A strategic view of networking
    • Urgent and Important priorities; getting a grip on your time
    • Getting your organisation fit to shape the environment

    Key features

    • Incorporates leading-edge thinking in this field
    • Short burst theory input
    • Illustrative cases of environment-shaping
    • Live examination of your strategic priorities
    • A strategic view of diary management
    • Takeaway hints and tips

    Neuroscience and managing diversity & inclusion

    Neuroscience provides us with a better understanding of the ways that our brains code information and therefore the basis of how we can change our behaviour. Leaders can use this to improve their performance and bring the best out of their teams and other colleagues.

    Awareness of how our brains work gives us a new perspective on ‘unconscious bias’, and enables us to manage our inherent preferences and not allow them to drive decisions.

    This masterclass is designed to help you devise ways to decrease the impact of unconscious bias and address diversity and inclusion.

    Core content

    • How unconscious bias develops in the brain and how change can be difficult
    • The role of unconscious bias in driving our behaviour
    • The relationship between unconscious bias and the diversity and inclusion agenda
    • The benefit of overcoming bias and increasing diversity and inclusion
    • How to overcome unconscious biases to create a more diverse workplace Key features

    Key features

    • Led by a neuroscience specialist
    • Create plans and processes that will increase diversity and inclusion in your organisation and ways to measure the impact of these changes

    Start the conversation

    We have your managers' and leaders' development needs covered, so speak to us today.