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Strategic Thinking Course Modules

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The ability to plan effectively for the future is crucial for any business if they want a competitive advantage. Strategic thinking helps participants understand the need for long term planning, setting goals and priorities, and identify potential risks and opportunities.

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A Sign of the Times - Communicating Brand

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 50 minutes.

Aims:
• To encourage participants to think about how and what they communicate to customers, using a slightly unusual perspective.
• To encourage participants to think about the language they use when communicating with customers.
• To show that all communication tells the customer something about the organisation, and that sometimes that’s not the intended message.
• To demonstrate how brand is affected by every piece of communication leaving the organisation.

About

Time:
The exercise in this module will take about 25 minutes to complete (but can be shortened if necessary). In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 50 minutes to complete this module.

Aims:
• To encourage participants to think about how and what they communicate to customers, using a slightly unusual perspective.
• To encourage participants to think about the language they use when communicating with customers.
• To show that all communication tells the customer something about the organisation, and that sometimes that’s not the intended message.
• To demonstrate how brand is affected by every piece of communication leaving the organisation.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of almost any size (working in small teams of ideally fewer than 6 people).

Useful For:
Staff at all levels.

You'll Need:
In addition to the Sign of the Times cards provided, each team will need sheets of flipchart paper, marker pens and blu-tak. (You'll need to be able to fix the sheets to a wall when complete too.)

Notes:
This is a powerful exercise that really gets participants to think about the way organisations communicate. It is a useful addition to any customer service training but it is of particular use with groups that are responsible for brand and the way the organisation portrays itself to the outside world. This could be managers within the marketing department, branch managers, recruitment managers etc.

It is suitable for all types of organisation, including public and charitable bodies.

Please Note:
The Sign of the Times cards are a particularly large file (10mb) and may take a few minutes to download.

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Achieving A Shared Vision

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 45 minutes.

Aims:
• To identify specific actions that will enable groups to achieve a shared vision.
• To help individuals see how they will contribute to the achievement of a shared vision.

About

Time:
The exercise in this module can be complete within 45 minutes. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 75 minutes to complete the module.

Aims:
• To identify specific actions that will enable groups to achieve a shared vision.
• To help individuals see how they will contribute to the achievement of a shared vision.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with most workshop/courses but is not recommended for use where the group has more than 25 participants (e.g., conferences).

Useful For:
Staff at all levels working in a team. It is particularly well suited to new teams formed for a fixed period to manage/implement a project.

You'll Need:
Plenty of sheets of thin A4 card and a selection of coloured pens (felt tip pens are ideal).

Notes:
This module allows the group to share their ideas on how they intend to work together to achieve a shared vision. The group need to be clear about what their vision is. If this isn’t the case, then you might wish to use the module, ‘Creating a Shared Vision’ to achieve this.

This activity can be used as a stand alone activity or combined with others (for example, 'Creating a Shared Vision' as part of a longer event.

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Beastly Barbecues - Introducing Change

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 90 minutes.

Aims:
• To encourage participants to think about how they would introduce a change programme.
• To consider the importance of establishing a sense that change is essential and urgent.
• To encourage participants to think about how they'll sustain change.

About

Time:
This exercise will take about 45 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 90 minutes to complete this module.

Aims:
• To encourage participants to think about how they would introduce a change programme.
• To consider the importance of establishing a sense that change is essential and urgent.
• To encourage participants to think about how they'll sustain change.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to 15 participants.

Useful For:
Managers.

You'll Need:
Nothing other than the materials provided.

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Boom or Bust - An Introduction to Profit and Loss Statements and Cashflow Forecasting

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 90 minutes.

Aims:
• To understand how a forecast profit and loss account is created.
• To give participants the opportunity to practise drafting a simple profit and loss account.
• To explain the importance of a projected cash flow statement.
• To recognise that forecasts are only as good as the assumptions on which they are based.

About

Time:
This exercise will take about 60 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 90 minutes to complete this module.

Aims:
• To understand how a forecast profit and loss account is created.
• To give participants the opportunity to practise drafting a simple profit and loss account.
• To explain the importance of a projected cash flow statement.
• To recognise that forecasts are only as good as the assumptions on which they are based.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to 15 participants.

Useful For:
Staff involved in business planning/financial forecasting for the first time.

You'll Need:
A calculator for every two participants.

Notes:
This module is intended for people with no finance experience and looks at how to draw up simple finance projections for a business plan by drafting a forecast profit and loss account and a rudimentary cash flow statement.

There is a current vogue not to include forecast balance sheets in business plans and so the balance sheet is not covered in this module.

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Breaking Goals Down

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 45 minutes.

Aims:
• To show the value of breaking goals down into smaller chunks.
• To provide participants the opportunity to practise breaking long-term goals down into a series of short term objectives.

About

Time:
The exercise in this module will take about 35 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 45 minutes to complete this module.

Aims:
• To show the value of breaking goals down into smaller chunks.
• To provide participants the opportunity to practise breaking long-term goals down into a series of short-term objectives.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to 25 participants.

Useful For:
Staff at all levels.

You'll Need:
Nothing other than the materials provided.

Notes:
We have provided you with a suggested Gap Analysis about learning to juggle. If your participants all work in a similar role or for the same organisation, you might wish to substitute this example with one that is more relevant to your participants.

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Bridge Challenge - Maintaining Momentum

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 45 minutes.

Aims:
• To consider the importance of momentum when innovating.
• To look at what builds momentum behind a project or idea, and what saps energy from a project or idea.

About

Time:
The exercise in this module will take about 20 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 45 minutes to complete this module.

Aims:
• To consider the importance of momentum when innovating.
• To look at what builds momentum behind a project or idea, and what saps energy from a project or idea.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of any size.

Useful For:
Managers.

You'll Need:
For this exercise you'll need to be able to split your participants into two teams, each with a different room to work in.

You'll also need to gather a set of 'building materials' for each team.

Typically, we provide each team with the following:
• 20 'pick-up' sticks.
• 3 pairs of scissors.
• 4 rulers.
• 6 sheets of A3 card (or 12 sheets of A4 card).
• A ball of string.
• A roll of sticky tape.

You can vary the materials you provide in any way you wish - the important thing is that each team must have exactly the same materials to work with (including the same number of pairs of scissors etc). You'll also need a toy car for each team (each should be the same size and weight). Choose a car that is 'Dinky' sized, rather than 'Matchbox' sized. (More mature UK readers will know what we mean!) For those of you who don't, we mean a car that is not too small - aim for something about six or seven inches long and weighing about 1lb (500 gram). We want this exercise to be challenging.

Notes:
This exercise can be used with very large groups (20 or more participants), but you'll need to establish more than two teams. Establish a number of small teams with four or five participants in them, and then some very large teams with perhaps a dozen participants in them.

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Business Planning - An Introduction

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 75 minutes.

Aims:
• To explore business planning as a process.
• To identify the typical structure and contents of a business plan.
• To identify the potential readership of a business plan.
• To reflect on the contents of a business plan from a reader's perspective.

About

Time:
This exercise will take about 45 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 75 minutes to complete this module.

Aims:
• To explore business planning as a process.
• To identify the typical structure and contents of a business plan.
• To identify the potential readership of a business plan.
• To reflect on the contents of a business plan from a reader's perspective.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to 15 participants.

Useful For:
Staff involved in business planning for the first time.

You'll Need:
Copies of recent business plans.

Notes:
This module is designed for staff coming to business planning with little prior knowledge, and employed within an established organisation. It will need tailoring for participants who wish to undertake business planning for a completely new venture.

Finance issues are briefly covered but are covered in more detail in a separate module.

Before running this module you will need to obtain copies of recent business plans. If you are an internal facilitator, you could use copies of your own organisation's business plans.

Alternatively, or if you are an external facilitator, business plans for many organisations can be found on the internet. Many organisations are happy for their plans to be used in training activities, but you should obtain their permission first.

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Creating A Shared Vision

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 120 minutes.

Aims:
• To agree what success looks like for everyone.
• To establish effective working relationships within groups or teams.
• To create a vision statement for the team.

About

Time:
The exercise in this module can be complete within 90 minutes. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 120 minutes to complete the module.

Aims:
• To agree what success looks like for everyone.
• To establish effective working relationships within groups or teams.
• To create a vision statement for the team.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with most workshop/courses but is not recommended for use where the group has more than 25 participants (e.g., conferences).

Useful For:
Staff at all levels working in a team. It is particularly well suited to new teams formed for a fixed period to manage/implement a project.

You'll Need:
• Plenty of post-it notes and flipchart paper.
• A selection of craft materials such as paints, brushes, glue, magazines, pieces of material. (You may prefer to restrict the materials available to coloured pens and paper, depending on the make up of the group you are working with.)

Notes:
This module allows the group to share ideas about what is important to them and to agree some communal aim, values and aspirations. As a result of this exercise the whole team will participate in the creation of a shared vision.

This activity can be used as a stand-alone activity or combined with others to form a longer event. The module Achieving a Shared Vision naturally leads on from this module.

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CRM - A Plan for Dune Races

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 75 minutes.

Aims:
• To identify approaches and ideas that could be used in a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) strategy.
• To develop a strategy based on the information provided about Dune Races.
• To share ideas and thoughts about what makes an effective CRM strategy.

About

Time:
The exercises in this module will take about 45 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 75 minutes to complete this module.

Aims:
• To identify approaches and ideas that could be used in a Customer Relationship Management (CRM) strategy.
• To develop a strategy based on the information provided about Dune Races.
• To share ideas and thoughts about what makes an effective CRM strategy.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to 15 participants.

Useful For:
Staff at all levels.

You'll Need:
A small prize for the winning team.

Notes:
This is one of a short series of modules that look at Customer Relationship Management (CRM) as a topic in its own right and is a useful follow on to 'Introducing CRM'.

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Describing Our Organisation’s Culture

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 40 minutes.

Aims:
• To understand what culture is and why it is important.
• To encourage participants to actively consider and discuss the culture of their own organisation.
• To elicit and compare the different perspectives that will exist about the organisation’s existing culture.
• To consider the appropriateness of the organisation’s current culture to drive future business success (optional – for culture change workshops).

About

Time:
The exercise in this module can be completed in about 40 minutes. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 60-90 minutes for this module.

Aims:
• To understand what culture is and why it is important.
• To encourage participants to actively consider and discuss the culture of their own organisation.
• To elicit and compare the different perspectives that will exist about the organisation’s existing culture.
• To consider the appropriateness of the organisation’s current culture to drive future business success (optional – for culture change workshops).

Group Size:
This module can be used with groups of up to 15 participants.

Useful For:
Staff at all levels, including managers and board directors.

You'll Need:
Nothing other than the materials provided.

Notes:
This activity is designed to provoke discussion around existing organisational culture, or to be used as an icebreaker for leadership programmes that contain a session on organisation or team culture.

This activity is also suitable to be run as an internal facilitated session for organisations that are considering or are in the process of a culture change. This activity will encourage contribution and engagement from staff at all levels about current and future culture, and is equally suitable for senior managers and board directors.

You will need to allow the longer time of 90 minutes if using the exercise as part of a culture change session.

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Employee Engagement 1 - What's in It for Me?

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 70 minutes.

Aims:
• To introduce managers to the subject of employee engagement.
• To help managers begin to understand why employee engagement is central to being a successful manager.

About

Time:
The exercise in this module can be completed in about 70 minutes. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing about 105 minutes for this module.

Aims:
• To introduce managers to the subject of employee engagement.
• To help managers begin to understand why employee engagement is central to being a successful manager.

Group Size:
This module can be used with groups of between 3 and 20 participants. Ideally, you'll have at least 6 participants though so that you can create 3 teams of 2 or more.

Useful For:
Participants with managerial responsibility (or those who will have imminently.)

You'll Need:
• Prepared flipcharts with simple 'cartoon' faces drawn on them - one face for each participant.
• Post-it notes.

Notes:
This exercise is designed for the start of an Employee Engagement workshop.

Before the participants arrive – create a flip chart or charts with colourful cartoon faces on. Please have enough faces so that there is one for each participant. Have these on display at the start of the exercise.

There are two parts to this exercise. It is essential that both are completed to ensure that learning is maximised.

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Feelings Cards - Personal Development

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 40 minutes.

Aims:
• To provide an opportunity for participants to consider how they perceive themselves and how others perceive them.

About

Time:
The exercise in this module will take about 15 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 40 minutes to complete this module.

Aims:
• To provide an opportunity for participants to consider how they perceive themselves and how others perceive them.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to 25 participants.

Useful For:
Staff at all levels.

You'll Need:
• One set of Feelings Cards per participant (provided).

Notes:
Use this in any training session where you want participants to reflect on how they see themselves and how they think they are seen by others.

You will need to use strong facilitation skills to debrief this exercise.

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Feelings Cards - Strategic Development

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 60 minutes.

Aims:
• To enable participants to consider how customers and staff view their organisation.
• To identify cultural/image strengths and weaknesses within the organisation.
• To generate discussion about how cultural/image strengths can be maintained, and how weaknesses might be overcome.

About

Time:
The exercise in this module will take about 45 minutes to complete (but can be shortened if necessary). In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 60 minutes to complete this module.

Aims:
• To enable participants to consider how customers and staff view their organisation.
• To identify cultural/image strengths and weaknesses within the organisation.
• To generate discussion about how cultural/image strengths can be maintained, and how weaknesses might be overcome.

Group Size:
Fairly adaptable but we would recommend use with groups of less than 15 participants, working in two teams.

Useful For:
Staff at all levels.

You'll Need:
• One set of Feelings Cards per team.
• Flipchart paper and marker pens for each team.
• Blu-tack.

Notes:
Use this as a catalyst for discussing how the organisation is currently viewed by its stakeholders, and how participants would like it to be viewed in the future.

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Find Your Team - Work Groups or Teams?

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 20 minutes.

Aims:
• To explore the differences between a team and work group.
• To help participants identify when a team or group is required.

About

Time:
The exercise in this module can be complete within 20 minutes. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 90 minutes to complete the module.

Aims:
• To explore the differences between a team and work group.
• To help participants identify when a team or group is required.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with most workshop/courses but is not recommended for use where the group has more than 25 participants (e.g., conferences).

Useful For:
Teams, work groups and/or their leaders who wish to explore the current organisation and management of the group.

You'll Need:
Each participant will need a copy of the case study and handout (downloaded from Trainers' Library).

Notes:
Where the intention is to encourage a work group to work together as a team, this module can be usefully followed by the following modules:
• Creating a Shared Vision.
• Achieving a Shared Vision.

It can also be a useful inclusion in any training intervention around remote teamworking.

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Hotel Doldrums Part 1 - Where Are We Now?

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 120 minutes.

Aims:
• To build an understanding of the key steps in strategic planning.
• To encourage participants to analyse financial and other data using a SWOT analysis.
• To encourage participants to think about where they are now, before moving on in the next module to consider where they want to be.

About

Time:
The exercise in this module can be completed in about 75 minutes. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing about 120 minutes for this module if working with 10-12 participants.

It is strongly recommended that, for maximum impact and best overall use of time, this module is run in conjunction with the other modules from the Hotel Doldrums series.

Aims:
• To build an understanding of the key steps in strategic planning.
• To encourage participants to analyse financial and other data using a SWOT analysis.
• To encourage participants to think about where they are now, before moving on in the next module to consider where they want to be.

Group Size:
An ideal group size for this module is 12, with participants working in 3 teams of 4. If you have more than 15 participants in your group, you may want to consider ‘doubling up’ on some of the briefs with more than one team using the same scenario. This doesn’t detract from the learning; in fact it can be interesting to see how different teams approach the same problem and task.

Useful For:
Staff at all levels including individuals, groups and teams that need to use strategic planning and analysis skills in the workplace.

You'll Need:
Each team will need a hotel data pack (provided) and a syndicate room or area.

Notes:
Hotel Doldrums is a series of modules that are designed to be run in sequence.

Together they form a complete 1.5 day workshop, which can be run as a single workshop, or as three independent sessions, each lasting between 2 and 4 hours. We’ve also suggested other modules you could add to the programme, if you have more time available.

Hotel Doldrums can also be run as a teambuilding game, where teams are left to compete with less facilitator involvement during the exercise, but a thorough review at the end. This takes about 3.5 hours to run.

If you prefer to use the teambuilding version of Hotel Doldrums, please download the trainer’s notes from the teambuilding games section of Trainers’ Library.

This series of modules is set in the context of the hotel industry but requires no specialist knowledge of it.

The modules, when used together, also draw out skills relating to business planning, problem solving, influencing, team working and making presentations.

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Hotel Doldrums Part 2 - Where Do We Want to Be?

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 180 minutes.

Aims:
• To give participants the opportunity to identify and explore options and appraise these.
• For participants to create a 3-5 year outline strategic plan based on the fictional case study they’ve been given.

About

This module follows on from Hotel Doldrums, part 1, and is not designed to be used as a stand-alone module.

Time:
The exercise in this module can be completed in about 135 minutes. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing about 180 minutes for this module if working with 10-12 participants.

Aims:
• To give participants the opportunity to identify and explore options and appraise these.
• For participants to create a 3-5 year outline strategic plan based on the fictional case study they’ve been given.

Group Size:
An ideal group size for this module is 12, with participants working in 3 teams of 4. If you have more than 15 participants in your group, you may want to consider ‘doubling up’ on some of the briefs with more than one team using the same scenario. This doesn’t detract from the learning; in fact it can be interesting to see how different teams approach the same problem and task.

Useful For:
Staff at all levels including individuals, groups and teams that need to use strategic planning and analysis skills in the workplace.

You'll Need:
Each team will a hotel data pack (provided) and a syndicate room or area.

Notes:
Hotel Doldrums is a series of modules that are designed to be run in sequence.

Together they form a complete 1.5 day workshop, which can be run as a single workshop, or as three independent sessions, each lasting between 2 and 4 hours. We’ve also suggested other modules you could add to the programme, if you have more time available.

The modules, when used together, also draw out skills relating to business planning, problem solving, influencing, team working and making presentations.

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Hotel Doldrums Part 3 - How Will We Get There?

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 240 minutes.

Aims:
• To encourage participants to develop a strategy from the options generated in previous sessions.
• To encourage participants to prepare and give a persuasive presentation outlining their strategy and the work they have done.
• To reflect on the learning from the Hotel Doldrums series of modules.

About

This module follows on from Hotel Doldrums, parts 1 and 2, and is not designed to be used as a stand-alone module.

Time:
The exercise in this module can be completed in about 140 minutes. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing about 240 minutes for this module if working with 10-12 participants.

Aims:
• To encourage participants to develop a strategy from the options generated in previous sessions.
• To encourage participants to prepare and give a persuasive presentation outlining their strategy and the work they have done.
• To reflect on the learning from the Hotel Doldrums series of modules.

Group Size:
An ideal group size for this module is 12, with participants working in 3 teams of 4. If you have more than 15 participants in your group, you may want to consider ‘doubling up’ on some of the briefs with more than one team using the same scenario. This doesn’t detract from the learning; in fact it can be interesting to see how different teams approach the same problem and task.

Useful For:
Staff at all levels including individuals, groups and teams that need to use strategic planning and analysis skills in the workplace.

You'll Need:
Each team will a hotel data pack (provided) and a syndicate room or area.

Notes:
Hotel Doldrums is a series of modules that are designed to be run in sequence.

Together they form a complete 1.5 day workshop, which can be run as a single workshop, or as three independent sessions, each lasting between 2 and 4 hours. We’ve also suggested other modules you could add to the programme, if you have more time available.

The modules, when used together, also draw out skills relating to business planning, problem solving, influencing, team working and making presentations.

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Influence 1 - The Games People Play

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 70 minutes.

Aims:
• To enable participants to consider the value and difficulty caused by organisational politics and political games.
• To create an understanding that managers cannot avoid politics and so need to know the games in which they may – deliberately or inadvertently – be playing.

About

Time:
The exercise in this module can be completed in about 40 minutes. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing about 70 minutes for this module.

Aims:
• To enable participants to consider the value and difficulty caused by organisational politics and political games.
• To create an understanding that managers cannot avoid politics and so need to know the games in which they may – deliberately or inadvertently – be playing.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to about 20 participants. It tends not to work well with very small groups.

Useful For:
All managers, but particularly those who are new to management and may not understand the political nature of organisations, including their own.

You'll Need:
Post-it notes, marker pens, a flipchart and copies of the handout provided.

Notes:
This is the first in a series of three modules examining influence, power and politics. It can be used on its own as a short session or with the other two to form a complete half day programme.

Politics is often seen as a ‘dirty word’ by many people, or as one in which they have no interest. The purpose of this module is for the participants to recognise that divorcing themselves from politics is a decision that could affect them adversely – and is, in itself, a political act. To influence the direction an organisation is taking means people taking part in politics.

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Influence 2 - Sources of Power

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 50 minutes.

Aims:
• To enable participants to understand what power is and where it comes from.

About

Time:
The exercise in this module can be completed in about 25 minutes. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing about 50 minutes for this module.

Aims:
• To enable participants to understand what power is and where it comes from.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to about 20 participants. It tends not to work well with very small groups.

Useful For:
All managers, but particularly those who are new to management and may not understand that power comes from many different sources, not just authority.

You'll Need:
Nothing other than the materials provided.

Notes:
This is part two of three modules looking at influence, politics and power. It can be run on its own or combined with the other two modules to make a complete half day programme.

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Influence 3 - Profile of Power

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 50 minutes.

Aims:
• To allow participants the opportunity to identify their own sources of power, to know which they need to develop and to have an action plan for doing this.

About

Time:
The exercise in this module can be completed in about 50 minutes. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing about 80 minutes for this module.

Aims:
• To allow participants the opportunity to identify their own sources of power, to know which they need to develop and to have an action plan for doing this.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to about 20 participants.

Useful For:
All managers but especially those who are new to the management role and may feel that they have little power of their own to allow them to accomplish results.

You'll Need:
Nothing other than the materials provided.

Notes:
This module is the third in a series looking at influence, power and politics. Whilst this module can be run on its on, it will have more effect if used as a follow on to the work done in Influence 2 - Sources of Power.

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Introducing CRM - Customer Relationship Management

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 60 minutes.

Aims:
• To define and briefly explore the concept of Customer Relationship Management.
• To consider the types of data that helps organisations manage their customer relationships and where this can be found.

About

Time:
The exercises in this module will take about 30 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 60 minutes to complete this module.

Aims:
• To define and briefly explore the concept of Customer Relationship Management.
• To consider the types of data that helps organisations manage their customer relationships and where this can be found.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to 15 participants.

Useful For:
Staff at all levels.

You'll Need:
Nothing other than the materials provided.

Notes:
This is the first of a short series of modules that look at Customer Relationship Management (CRM) as a topic in its own right. In this first module we look at what is meant by CRM and why it is important. The exercise looks at information required in order to start planning a customer relationship strategy.

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Introducing Leadership - A Logical Puzzle Based Exercise

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 75 minutes.

Aims:
• To understand the difference between leadership and management and the importance of both.
• To identify ways that participants can lead and manage their most important team members.

About

Time:
The exercise in this module can be completed in about 45 minutes. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing about 75 minutes for this module.

Aims:
• To understand the difference between leadership and management and the importance of both.
• To identify ways that participants can lead and manage their most important team members.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to about 15 participants.

Useful For:
Participants with current (or imminent) managerial responsibility.

You'll Need:
Nothing other than the materials provided.

Notes:
This exercise is a great way to open up a workshop about leadership. It removes the need for the more traditional participant introductions and enables you to observe the participants in action and explore their priorities and attitudes to managing people.

You can run this exercise with a range of team sizes, with between 4 and 8 players in each team. Please select the correct Clue Card pack based on the number in the team. Choose the team sizes that work for you. For example, with a group of 15, the exercise can be run with 3 teams of 5 or 2 teams, one of 7 and the other 8.

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Making Continuous Improvement Happen

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 45 minutes.

Aims:
• To identify improvements that can be made.
• To identify things that need to be taken into consideration when planning continuous improvement activities.
• To plan one improvement that can be implemented in the workplace.

About

Time:
The exercises in this module will take about 30 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 45 minutes to complete this module.

Aims:
• To identify improvements that can be made.
• To identify things that need to be taken into consideration when planning continuous improvement activities.
• To plan one improvement that can be implemented in the workplace.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to 15 participants.

Useful For:
Staff at all levels.

You'll Need:
Nothing other than the materials provided.

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On Target for Goal - Goal Setting

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 180 minutes.

Aims:
• To define aims, goals and objectives.
• To identify the purpose of goal setting.
• To introduce a six-step model for goal setting.
• To enable participants to practise goal setting.
• To identify and discuss some tools and techniques that support setting and achieving goals.

About

Time:
The exercises in this module will take about 100 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 180 minutes to complete this module.

Aims:
• To define aims, goals and objectives.
• To identify the purpose of goal setting.
• To introduce a six-step model for goal setting.
• To enable participants to practise goal setting.
• To identify and discuss some tools and techniques that support setting and achieving goals.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to 25 participants.

Useful For:
Staff at all levels.

You'll Need:
Nothing other than the materials provided.

Notes:
Although the whole module may take 3 or more hours to run, this is comprised of several smaller sessions that can, if necessary and appropriate, be separated. This module is appropriate for anyone who needs to set and achieve goals in the workplace, their career or their personal life.

You may find it helpful to work through the definitions set out in the first session and apply them to a goal of your own, so that you have a personal example to share with participants if they are a little reluctant to discuss their own goals.

Session four is a long session (2 hours) that takes participants through the goal setting process and allows time for them to define and describe in detail their goal(s). It is split into several sub-sections (linked to the stages of goal setting) for ease of use. The timing of a break is suggested but it may be taken at any time during this session, as convenient for the group.

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One Hump Or Two? - An Introduction to Continuous Improvement

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 50 minutes.

Aims:
• To provide a basic understanding of continuous improvement as a process and management tool.
• To place continuous improvement in context through a participatory exercise.

About

Time:
The exercises in this module will take about 30 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 50 minutes to complete this module.

Aims:
• To provide a basic understanding of continuous improvement as a process and management tool.
• To place continuous improvement in context through a participatory exercise.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to 25 participants.

Useful For:
Staff at all levels.

You'll Need:
Old newspapers and sticky tape.

Notes:
You will need a large pile of old newspapers and some reels of sticky tape for this exercise.

You will also need to have made one "standard design" camel from folding or scrunching newspaper and using sticky tape.

This camel should have discernible legs, a head and a hump; but does not have to be a work of art! The participants need to be able to roughly copy it (note - the exercise is about improving upon the original). Finally you need to make a baton from newspaper, which will be used to bat the camel along in the camel races.

You will also require space to set up a track - this can usually be achieved by safely moving tables and chairs to the sides of the room.

You may wish to have a supply of small prizes available for the camel race winners.

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SMART Objectives

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 90 minutes.

Aims:
• To welcome participants to the course.
• To introduce the facilitator and participants to each other.
• To discover the participants needs.
• To encourage interaction and discussion.
• To practise writing SMART objectives.

About

Time:
The exercises in this module will take about 50 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 90 minutes to complete this module.

Aims:
• To welcome participants to the course.
• To introduce the facilitator and participants to each other.
• To discover the participants needs.
• To encourage interaction and discussion.
• To practise writing SMART objectives.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to 25 participants.

Useful For:
Supervisors and above.

You'll Need:
Nothing other than the materials provided.

Notes:
This module provides a long introduction to courses, but is particularly useful where the concept of SMART objectives is important to the training being delivered. It provides an ideal introduction to performance management training for example.

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Snakes and Ladders - An Introduction to Risk

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 80 minutes.

Aims:
• To encourage participants to think about the nature of risk.
• To encourage participants to think about risk in relation to project management.
• To provide participants with an understanding of basic risk management strategies.

About

Time:
The exercises in this module will take about 30 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 80 minutes to complete this module.

Aims:
• To encourage participants to think about the nature of risk.
• To encourage participants to think about risk in relation to project management.
• To provide participants with an understanding of basic risk management strategies.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to 25 participants.

Useful For:
Team leaders and junior management.

You'll Need:
Coloured pens and sticky labels.

Notes:
This module can be used as a follow on from "The Wedding Planner", and "The Runaway Bride" to create a half day training programme. You will need a large supply of sticky labels that participants can write on. (Ideally these should be in a variety of colours). In addition you'll need plenty of coloured pens.

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The Card Factory - Using Vision and Values

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 75 minutes.

Aims:
• To encourage participants to think about the extent to which staff feel engaged with the organisation they work for.
• To consider who staff feel is responsible for business performance.
• To think about how vision and values are used within the organisation.
• To demonstrate how values can be ingrained in the organisation.
• To consider the benefits of an organisation where staff feel engaged and responsible for the business outcomes.

About

Time:
This exercise will take about 60 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 90 minutes to complete this module.

Aims:
• To encourage participants to think about the extent to which staff feel engaged with the organisation they work for.
• To consider who staff feel is responsible for business performance.
• To think about how vision and values are used within the organisation.
• To demonstrate how values can be ingrained in the organisation.
• To consider the benefits of an organisation where staff feel engaged and responsible for the business outcomes.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to 15 participants.

Useful For:
Managers.

You'll Need:
For this exercise you will need a good quantity of greeting card making materials. For example: Glue, Double sided tape or pads, Scissors, Card of various colours and textures, Ribbon of various colours and Gold/silver markers.

You'll need enough materials for each team of 4-6 participants to make one 'template' card and one 'team' card of their own design.

Notes:
This exercise was first used at the 2008 Trainers' Library Conference and has been designed around the five 'passions' that underpin our business. It's an unusually personal module that we've used to share some of the key principles and approaches that we believe have been key to the success of Glasstap. It's been added to Trainers' Library in response to requests from participants who attended the conference.

You can use the five values we've suggested for the exercise to great effect. The exercise can also be easily adapted to your own organisation's vision and values but we do strongly recommend limiting the number of values used in this exercise to 6 or fewer.

If your organisation does not have a clear set of values or principles, you could use an exercise like 'Feeling Cards' to generate discussion around people's values and to identify some possible organistional values for the future.

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The Case for Internal Customer Care

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 45 minutes.

Aims:
• To identify the benefits and dangers of internal customer care programmes.
• To reach agreement on how to define internal customer care as a desirable goal.

About

Time:
The exercise in this module will take about 30 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 45 minutes to complete this module.

Aims:
• To identify the benefits and dangers of internal customer care programmes.
• To reach agreement on how to define internal customer care as a desirable goal.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to 15 participants.

Useful For:
Staff at all levels.

You'll Need:
Nothing other than the materials provided.

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The Change Journey - What to Do When Change Really Hurts

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 60 minutes.

Aims:
• To describe the change curve.
• To consider strategies for working through the change curve journey.

About

Time:
The exercise in this module can be completed in about 40 minutes. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing about 60 minutes for this module.

Aims:
• To describe the change curve.
• To consider strategies for working through the change curve journey.

Group Size:
This module can be used with groups of between 8 and 25 participants.

Useful For:
All staff including managers.

You'll Need:
• Article – ‘When Change Really Hurts’, available in the Articles section of Trainers’ Library.
• Post-it notes.

Notes:
This can be a challenging session to run so it’s important that you feel confident in your knowledge and have lots of information to add if the group clams up. Apart from the article that you need for the session, you may also find it useful to read those by Damien Hughes and Martin Haworth, also available in the Articles section of Trainers’ Library.

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The Internal Service Chain

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 75 minutes.

Aims:
• To explore the concept of an internal service chain.
• To give participants the opportunity to map an internal service chain and identify critical internal relationships.

About

Time:
The exercise in this module will take about 55 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 75 minutes to complete this module.

Aims:
• To explore the concept of an internal service chain.
• To give participants the opportunity to map an internal service chain and identify critical internal relationships.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to 25 participants.

Useful For:
Staff at all levels.

You'll Need:
Nothing other than the materials provided.

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Triangle of Responsibility - Three Key Roles of Management

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 60 minutes.

Aims:
• To allow first time managers to become familiar with the important aspects of being a manager.
• To help participants understand the three key roles of a manager.

About

Time:
The exercise in this module can be completed in about 45 minutes. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing at least 60 minutes for this module.

Aims:
• To allow first time managers to become familiar with the important aspects of being a manager.
• To help participants understand the three key roles of a manager.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to about 20 participants.

Useful For:
First time managers who are starting out in the role or managing a new team. This module is particularly useful for those individuals who need to understand some of the underlying principles of the role of manager.

You'll Need:
Nothing other than the materials provided.

Notes:
This module can be usefully followed by the following modules:
• Any First Time Manager course module from Trainers’ Library.
• Any Leadership module from Trainers’ Library.

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Trouble at the Inn - Managing Poor Performance

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 180 minutes.

Aims:
• To encourage participants to consider different approaches to improving poor performance, and the relative merits of those different approaches.
• To encourage participants to think about appropriate timescales over which they might expect to improve performance and standards.
• To consider the implications of not taking action to improve poor performance.

About

Time:
This exercise will take about 80 minutes to complete. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing 180 minutes to complete this module.

Aims:
• To encourage participants to consider different approaches to improving poor performance, and the relative merits of those different approaches.
• To encourage participants to think about appropriate timescales over which they might expect to improve performance and standards.
• To consider the implications of not taking action to improve poor performance.

Group Size:
This module is suitable for use with groups of up to 15 participants.

Useful For:
Managers.

You'll Need:
Nothing other than the materials provided.

Notes:
There are two different versions of the team brief for this exercise.

For junior managers we recommend using version 1, which contains a list of actions that the managers could consider when dealing with the issues of poor performance.

For more experienced managers, we recommend using version 2, which does not provide any clues about the type of action they could take and encourages them to come up with their own solutions.

This module is ideally suited for inclusion in training around managing change.

You can reduce the amount of time needed for this module by approximately 30 minutes by not requesting a formal presentation and simply asking each team instead to talk through its proposed actions.

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With Authority Comes Freedom - Introducing Tannenbaum and Schmidt

Time:
In total we estimate this exercise will take 90 minutes.

Aims:
• To understand the importance of delegating authority appropriately to other colleagues.
• To introduce the Tannenbaum and Schmidt Continuum as a method of deciding what levels of authority to delegate.

About

Time:
The exercise in this module can be completed in about 55 minutes. In total, allowing for discussion, we recommend allowing about 90 minutes for this module.

Aims:
• To understand the importance of delegating authority appropriately to other colleagues.
• To introduce the Tannenbaum and Schmidt Continuum as a method of deciding what levels of authority to delegate.

Group Size:
This module can be used with groups of up to 25 participants.

Useful For:
Those who have responsibility for other staff, or who will do very soon.

You'll Need:
• One set of cards for every team of 2-3 participants.
• Blu-tack.

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