Learn how to deliver amazing presentations with our new Presentation Skills course

How many presentations have you given in the last six months? The chances are, you’ve given quite a few, even if you don’t know it. It’s not always about standing up on stage in front of hundreds of people – it could be updating your team on project progress, delivering performance figures to the board, pitching for sales with a client, even just taking three or four people through a new business process. Presentations come in many forms and the communication skillset is pretty similar across the range. You need to be able to engage with people, communicate clearly, and meet both your and their objectives. Many people get nervous at the thought of presenting, and that’s quite normal. Having a well thought through presentation plan will naturally help you overcome those nerves and deliver with confidence and clarity. Even if you’re one of those lucky people that are confident about standing up, all eyes on them, and speaking to a group of people, there’s always room to improve and refine your presentation style.

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Skilful.co at the Essex Business Excellence Awards 2016

Essex Business Excellence Awards 2016 FinalistWe had a great time at the Essex Business Excellence awards on Friday and met lots of people working in some really interesting businesses. Everyone was passionate about what they do, and it’s really inspiring to hear their stories and how they got to where they are. There were awards ranging from Innovation, Best Growing Business, Best New Business (which we were a finalist for), through to Marketing and Entrepreneur of the year. The competition was tough, and to make it as far as the finals was a real honour.  Thanks to everyone involved for a great evening.

It’s back to work today on our Presentations course, coming soon to Skilful.co

New Interviewing course available now

So many managers we’ve spoken to said that they wish they had some help with interviewing when they started out. The time and productivity that is lost when the wrong person is selected for a job – not to mention the hit on morale for both parties – can be difficult to claw back. This is why we designed an interviewing course to help managers get it right, first time, every time.

From today, you can take our Interviewing course and learn about:

  • Good practice for interviewing
  • Preparing a clear and concise job description
  • How to draft key questions that match your job description
  • How to review a CV, and what to look for
  • How to get a clear indication of ability through competency based questions
  • How to get the interview off to a good start
  • How to take useful notes during the interview, so that you have everything you need after
  • How to close the interview in a clear and positive way
  • How to follow up with everyone and select the right person

We’ve also included practice activities where you can role play an interview and ask different questions to see the types of response you’re likely to get. Sometimes, just asking a question or pointing something out in a slightly different way will unlock valuable information.

If you’ve already got a Skilful.co account, you can go straight to the Interviewing Course and start learning how to get it right. To find out more about Skilful.co membership and our other courses, including Appraisals, Delegation, Teams, Motivation, and so much more, visit Skilful.co and sign up for a trial account today.

Skilful.co is a finalist in the Essex Business Excellence Awards 2016

Essex Business Excellence Awards 2016 FinalistWe are thrilled to announce that Skilful.co has been selected as a Finalist in the ‘Best New Business’ category at the Essex Business Excellence Awards. The ‘Best New Business Award’ is designed to recognise:

“Having entered the market during particularly difficult economic times companies that, despite the obstacles, are managing to achieve growth and are on track towards long term profitability.” 

We’re keen for the business to grow and help more and more managers, in Essex and across the UK, to build their management skills, and be successful as leaders.

The awards are on the 23rd September at Hylands House, Chelmsford, and we wish everyone the best of luck!

New on Skilful.co

It’s an exciting time at Skilful.co. We’ve had some brilliantly helpful feedback from managers using Skilful and we’ve taken those comments on board and are building their suggestions into the site, so we’re learning and growing all the time.

We had feedback asking for more ‘standalone’ short pieces of learning and so we added the “Discover” area to the site, with videos, articles, worksheets and infographics to make it even easier to learn over a coffee. People also asked for more downloads and handouts to go with the courses so Skilful.co members will see these popping up.

We’ve filmed a brand new interviewing course with Fiona McBride (to be launched this summer) to help managers make the right recruitment decisions, as well as give a great candidate experience. We’ve met lots of people who have taken new recruits into the team, only to find out they weren’t right for the role, so our new course will help make sure that managers hire the right people.

We’re also working on a Presentations course, designed to give people the skill to prepare a great presentation and the confidence to deliver it well, so that giving presentations needn’t hold the fear factor that does for so many managers.

Finally, we’re moving! From next week we’ll have bigger offices with a brand new filming studio and new filming spaces to bring the videos on Skilful to life.

So there’s lots happening as we build Skilful and make it more and more helpful for managers. Thank you!

Skilful.co wins gold for B2B website at the Essex Digital Awards 2016

We had an amazing night at the Essex Digital Awards and very proudly received the gold award for B2B website. The Essex Digital awards have been running since 2013, and reward innovation and progressive thinking in businesses, individuals, events, charities, and educational establishments.

When presented with the award, the judges said “Faced with a subject matter that can be dry and unglamorous, this design has been approached with a dynamic and professional eye, producing visuals that match the excellent content for user engagement.”

Robin Bailey did a fantastic job of hosting the event and it was great to meet him and Patrick Maynard from the Essex Chambers of Commerce on stage to receive our award.

We’ve worked with some impressive people to build Skilful.co and develop the courses and bespoke content. Our first group of coaches – Fiona McBride, Tracey Rotsey, and Carla Wise – all contributed a diverse range of knowledge and experience which we regularly see help managers in both small and large businesses. The feedback we’ve been getting really shows that online management training can make a big difference, and we love seeing managers become better and more confident, and actually finding management training engaging and enjoyable. We’ve also been a part of the Essex Innovation Programme which has really helped drive us forward and grow as a business.

We’re still offering other finalists in the Essex Digital Awards 2016 a chance to take part in our management training for free. You’ll get 3 seats free for 3 months (normal value of £225+VAT). After the 3 months there will be no obligation to continue with the subscription, but hopefully we’ll be giving many people the confidence and ability to become great managers. If you were a finalist, be sure to get in touch before 22nd April 2016 to grab your seats and start your online management training.

Skilful.co is a finalist in the Essex Digital Awards 2016

We’re very proud to announce that we’ve been selected as a finalist in this year’s Essex Digital Awards!

The Essex Digital Awards recognise innovation and progressive thinking by rewarding some of the industry’s ‘leading lights’. The competition is tough this year, and we’re incredibly proud to be a part of it. We set out to make management training modern and accessible to all businesses using technology, so for us to be made a finalist for this award really motivates us to continue and push forward.

To celebrate, we’re offering other finalists 3 seats on Skilful.co for 3 months, absolutely free (normal value of £225+VAT). This will give companies which are leading the way in digital innovation a chance to up-skill their managers in areas such as appraisals, leading meetings, interviewing, and many more topics which are all included in our subscription. After the 3 months there will be no obligation to continue with the subscription, but hopefully we’ll be giving many people the confidence and ability to become great managers.

If you’re a finalist, we invite you to get in touch so you can claim your free Skilful.co seats and start training today. This offer will run until 22nd April 2016, so if you’re interested, be sure to get in touch before then.

How to say ‘no’… in under 5 minutes

In our latest ‘quick tips’ video we explore why people find it hard to say ‘no’, but why it’s important to ensure you stay productive and manage expectations properly. Here are some tips and things to think about to make sure you can say ‘no’ in the best way, depending on the situation and what you’re trying to achieve.

Five management resolutions for 2016

It’s the time year when we often reflect and start to think about the year ahead. We were talking about what piece of advice we could give that will help people be better managers in 2016. We thought about everything we hear from managers and their teams and boiled it down to the 5 Resolutions in our new video. We think if you regularly do these 5 things you and your team will be better placed for a successful 2016.

  1. Engage with your team so you and they know what’s happening and how things are going.
  2. Set clear goals so you all know what’s expected and by when.
  3. Delegate well. This doesn’t mean dumping on people, it means giving people responsibilities and supporting them to develop and succeed.
  4. Follow up on the goals you set so people feel supported and tasks aren’t forgotten.
  5. Give each of your team feedback so they know if they are doing well and where they can improve.

What are your management resolutions or tips for 2016? We’d love to hear!

How to manage your boss… in under 5 minutes

If you don’t know what your boss expects of you, how can you be sure you’re focusing your time and energy on the right tasks? In our latest video we’ll talk you through why it’s important to get to know your boss; what are their concerns, worries, and how are they being measured? If you don’t know, the best way is to simply… ask. Open a dialogue with your boss, find our what they expect you to deliver, and also use this as an opportunity to make sure you have everything you need to make this happen. Here’s how to do it: