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Soft Skills Workshop

Soft Skills workshop

Become a better communicator to advance in your career

This one-day workshop will help you gain a better understanding of key soft skills and how they can complement your existing skill set. Soft skills are multifaceted and can include interpersonal skills, social skills, communication skills, attitudes, and teamwork and leadership abilities. Typically, soft skills are more difficult to measure, but they are immensely valuable, especially as your career progresses.

Upcoming Seminar Dates

September 30, 2024 – Live Online
December 10, 2024 – In Person

Soft skills and your career
Soft skills are in high demand. Employers value professionals who can communicate effectively, handle difficult conversations, and make impactful presentations. Discover your communication tendencies and preferences at the Soft Skills Workshop and watch how this newfound self-awareness transforms your interactions at work. Learn to read your audience and adjust your communication style accordingly, which is an important skill to have in diverse workplaces where understanding and respecting different communication styles is crucial. Whether you’re pitching an idea or presenting a project, this workshop will teach you how to capture attention and persuade effectively. Expect hands-on exercises and real-life scenarios that let you immediately apply what you learn.

During this workshop, we will focus on helping you:

      • Gain a better understanding of your own communication style and the styles of others.
      • Understand the nuances of cultural differences as they relate to team work, negotiation, and leadership.
      • Improve your presentation skills.
      • Develop strategies to have more productive difficult conversations.
Communication Signals and Styles
Poor or miscommunication in the workplace can lead to frustration and loss of productivity. In order to become a better communicator, it is important to understand your communication style and how it interacts with the styles of others.

The workshop begins with becoming more self-aware of your communication tendencies and preferences and how they can be perceived by others. The course then moves on to learning how to read your audience to identify their communication styles. Different ways of communicating can unintentionally cause friction. Once you have a firm grasp of your communication style and how it can complement or clash with other styles, you will be able to adjust your methods to convey your thoughts and ideas more powerfully. Insight into your communication style and those of others enables more impactful, effective communication.

According to Psychology Today, the meaning of messages is conveyed 55% by the speaker’s facial expressions and body language, 38% by the tone they use, and only 7% by the words they select.  When we can align our facial expressions, tone, and words together, our ability to influence our audience is significantly increased.  Now with increased virtual interactions, the ability to pick up cues through facial expressions and tone becomes even more critical.

Difficult Conversations
Why is it so hard to have difficult conversations? One of the reasons is because often times, emotions are involved and during heightened sensitivity, it becomes harder to have meaningful conversations. During this session, we will take what you learned about communications styles and explore ways to approach difficult conversations. We will take examples submitted by the class participants to focus on common scenarios and delve deeper through targeted hands-on exercises.

Presentation Skills
It takes just a few seconds to make a first impression. If you are trying to give a persuasive presentation to a group of key decision-makers or influencers, that does not give you much time. What can you do to improve upon the impression you make? During this session, we will focus on how to stay attentive, strengthen your persuasiveness, and raise the odds of your message being remembered positively. You will also learn how to leverage both your verbal and body language as well as utilize simple techniques to elevate your positioning.


Jean Choy, Soft Skills Workshop facultyJean Choy is the Associate Dean of Executive Education and International Initiatives at the University of Washington’s Foster School of Business. She is responsible for developing long-term strategic partnerships to promote new business development and collaborative initiatives among corporate organizations, academic institutions, government offices, and individuals. Jean also teaches Communication Skills and Strategies in the Global Executive MBA Program which covers topics on the importance of engaging others, being coachable, managing team dynamics, influencing and persuading, leveraging networking opportunities, and listening.

Additional faculty for in-person course

Lee Hochberg is a television documentary producer and longtime Special Correspondent for the PBS NewsHour. Based in Seattle, he has produced nearly 300 national mini-documentary reports. He led PBS coverage of the 1989 Exxon Valdez oil spill, providing the first network coverage of the disaster and the inadequate spill response by the oil industry. His other investigations led to improvements in emergency medical response, tighter safety standards in the trucking and mountain guide industries, improved access to food stamp benefits, and better accommodation of homeless students in public schools. His work has been awarded journalism’s George Foster Peabody Award, an Emmy, the Corporation for Public Broadcasting Documentary News Award, and other commendations.

Dates and fees Registration
September 30, 2024
Live Online
Register now

Deadline: September 23, 2024

December 10, 2024
In Person
Register now

Deadline: November 26, 2024

Payment must be made by check, credit card, or submit a purchase order for later invoice.

It is strongly encouraged that you register early as space is limited. See discount and cancellation policies.

Program fee includes parking, lunches, and learning materials.

Bank of America Executive Center (BAEC)
University of Washington Main Campus
4275 NE Stevens Way
Seattle, WA 98195
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You will receive a parking code and instructions on where to park on campus from the program manager via email prior to the start of the class.

Commuter info
Please see these resources for information about commuting by bike, bus, or train:

Disability accommodation
The University is committed to providing access, equal opportunity, and reasonable accommodation in its services, programs, activities, education, and employment for individuals with disabilities. Please see this reference about submitting accommodation requests.

Continuing Education Credits
Participants are eligible to receive 0.63 Continuing Education Units (CEUs) for this seminar. You must request tracking of your CEU credits when you register. More information about CEUs.

Schedule at a glance

8 – 8:45 a.m. Check-In and Continental Breakfast
8:45 a.m. – 12 p.m. Class
12 – 1 p.m. Lunch provided
1- 4:30 p.m. Class

Like our in-person courses, online courses from Executive Education are designed and led by Foster School instructors and taught using the same evidence-based research and application. Students will participate in discussions, breakout sessions, and direct interactions with our instructors. Courses are conducted via Zoom, which facilitates participation via webcam and text-based chat.

In addition to the instructor, your program manager will provide guidance throughout the course. You will be contacted by the program manager via email and provided with course logistics.

Continuing Education Credits
Participants are eligible to receive 0.45 Continuing Education Units (CEUs) for this seminar. You must request tracking of your CEU credits when you register. More information about CEUs.

Schedule at a glance

8:30 a.m. – 12 p.m. Class
12 – 1 p.m. Break
1 – 2:30 p.m. Class
Executive Education students
Customize this seminar for your company

We can offer this seminar exclusively for your organization and tailor it to meet your goals. Read about our custom programs and convenient offerings for private trainings.

Learn about Custom and Group Programs

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