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Archive: Mar 2020

  1. PTP launches Face-to-Face Live

    Given the unprecedented times we are living in as the COVID-19 pandemic picks up speed, many businesses are being forced to evolve and change. For us at PTP this has meant looking for new ways to allow organisations and individuals to continue essential training, building resilience into a workforce to cope with uncertainty and allowing for ongoing development. That’s why we have launched Face-to-Face Live – a series of training sessions that delegates can join as part of a public group or which can be organised on a one to one basis with a PTP Trainer provided the training live.

    Why are we launching Face-to-Face Live?

    Moving training online in this way takes into account the reality for many businesses that a large percentage of a workforce may now be working from home. In-person training sessions are not currently practical but the technology and infrastructure exists to continue to deliver this online. PTP has created a series of 20+ courses that are now public sessions that anyone can join online, including those focusing on key topics such as Managing Remote Teams and Managing Change. It’s crucial for staff and organisations not to stagnate during this uncertain time and access to relevant training offers an opportunity for progress and ongoing development among staff. It can also help to provide structure where employees are struggling with home working and improve focus and motivation.

    What are the benefits of online training?

    Online training gives businesses and employees options when it comes to individual professional development that can contribute to overall business growth. These are just a few of the advantages of using it.

    • Online training can fit in around existing obligations and responsibilities, whether that is the need for parents to handle childcare or in a situation where an individual is sick. One to one training sessions are especially flexible and can be booked for a time that best suits the individual.
    • Being part of a community. Especially now with citizens being instructed to stay at home the potential negative impact of isolation is very real. Online training provides an opportunity to be part of a community and build networks even in these times of social distancing.
    • It’s incredibly easy for anyone to access online training – delegates just need an internet connection and a computer or device to do so.
    • A wealth of resources. As well as live training sessions, online resources may include one to one support, downloadable notes and materials, assessments and videos. Technology provides many opportunities to reinforce and review time that has been invested in online training to ensure that the learning really sinks in.
    • There is plenty of evidence to suggest that online learning is incredibly effective when it comes to information retention. In fact, it can have more impact as a result of the variety of tools available and the flexibility when it comes to schedules.

    What makes Face-to-Face different  to many other online learning tools, is that our trainers will be delivery the training live specifically to you or your team, that means they can teach at your pace, be available to answer any questions and talk further about anything you need more help understanding.

    PTP Face-to-Face Live is now up and running and you can already book in to the public sessions for April and May. If you’re keen to maintain professional development and motivation no matter what this crisis brings, a resource such as this could be key.

  2. Top 7 tips for writing a successful tender

    Creating a successful tender is not rocket science. However, it does require getting the structure right and ensuring that you include the relevant details. These top tips are designed to help you create an effective tender that will achieve positive results.

    • If there is a template, use it

      . There’s a reason that the template has been provided and, especially if you don’t have a lot of experience with this type of document, it can be a great guide to the process of creating one. Bear in mind that templates may place certain word limits on sections and require content in specific formats.

    • If there is no guide to form then opt for clear, logical and well organised.

      You may not have a template or a structure guide to work from for your tender. If that’s the case then it’s even more important to write a document that is concise, clear and which makes sense. Start with an engaging introduction that seeks to identify the reason for the tender, as well as the rationale and central proposition of your bid.

    • Use the selection criteria as a guide.

      When you’re writing a tender pay close attention to the selection criteria – does your bid meet these needs? It’s not enough just to state that it does you’ll also need to provide examples of verifiable experience and outline the credentials that you have that make you the ideal match.

    • Make sure that all the details are there.

      Writing a successful tender can be an involved process and there may be a lot to remember where the details are concerned. Depending on the bid you may need to include information such as the cost, whether that includes taxes, details of any subcontracting that you’re proposing to do, a timeline with milestones identified, any conditions that might affect the costing you’ve done as well as information about intellectual property rights if relevant.

    • Check your tender – and then check it again

      . The document will need to stand up on its own so it’s essential that it contains all the relevant information and comes across as an engaging and impressive piece of writing. Spelling and grammar errors may seem like small issues but they can seriously undermine your case if you don’t remove them from the tender before it’s submitted.

    • Find referees to support you.

      It’s essential to choose appropriate referees and to ensure that they are happy to back up your bid in this way. It might be useful to provide a brief to referees so they know what you’re trying to do.

    • Be timely.

      If you’re late submitting the tender then that can mean a waste of a lot of work. Make sure you give yourself plenty of time to complete the submission – if this is being done online remember that network issues or tech breakdown could be devastating if you’re trying to get the tender in at the 11th hour.

    Writing a successful tender is a simple process that requires an eye for detail, engaging content and ensuring that all the right information is in the correct place. Find out more by booking onto our How To Write Winning Tenders Training Course…

  3. Our top 12 tips for handling difficult conversations

    Conflict in the workplace can be very destructive, leading to sick days or a lack of motivation, even personal attack. As a leader, learning how to handle difficult conversations provides an opportunity to head conflict off early and create a more positive environment at work.

    1. Reflect a little. Prepare yourself to let the other person tell their story before you jump in. And before you open the conversation reflect on your own perception – are there any preconceived ideas or emotions that you’re bringing to the table that aren’t really helpful?
    2. Identify the problem. If there is an issue, before you raise it, get clear on what it is and the impact it’s having. Otherwise confusion could make the situation worse.
    3. Identify the outcome. Before you have a difficult conversation be unambiguous in terms of what you want to achieve with it – that could be getting another person to agree to something, providing support or agreeing a mutual plan of action to overcome obstacles.
    4. Don’t block emotions. It’s far healthier to acknowledge them, whether these are your own or someone else’s.
    5. Remember how important it is to be consistent. If you take a different approach to a difficult conversation with one employee than you did with another then you may find that you start to lose people’s trust. It’s crucial to be consistent in the way you treat everyone if you want to ensure positive outcomes.
    6. Allow for there to be some moments of pause. You don’t need to fill every single silence in a difficult conversation with chat. It might be necessary for both parties to stop and think or to give the other person the opportunity to process what you’re saying.
    7. Be direct. From the start of the conversation be open and concise – begin with something that sets the scene as to why that person is there and what you want to talk about.
    8. Make an ongoing relationship your priority. Although it can take a long time to establish a positive relationship with someone this can be blown away in minutes by a bad conversation. When you’re thinking about the best way to approach a difficult chat make preserving the relationship the focus.
    9. Understand conflict resolution. It’s often useful to do some training on conflict resolution so that you have the language and the tools to manage the process.
    10. Be clear about how you’re going to handle objections and obstacles. Most often these come in the form of stonewalling, sarcasm and accusing. These ploys are inevitable in a difficult conversation and so it’s a good idea to work out in advance how you want to deal with them.
    11. Pick your time and place. A difficult conversation that takes place before a deadline in the middle of a busy office could have a much more negative outcome than one in a less stressed environment and a more relaxed location.
    12. Delve into the science. There are lots of books, lectures and podcasts available on the topic of difficult conversations and the more widely you read around the subject the easier you’ll find it to work with.

    Difficult conversations are inevitable but the way you handle them can make a big difference to outcomes. Find out more by booking onto our Handling Difficult Conversations Confidently Training Course…

  4. How to become a finance expert with no knowledge

    If you want to develop your own financial expertise then having no initial knowledge is actually a great place to start. There are a wealth of resources available today for anyone who is interested in becoming more knowledgeable where finance is concerned, whether you’re looking to acquire expertise relating to complex securities or your own personal finances.

    Books are a great place to begin

    Whether you opt for paperback or the Kindle version, reading can open the door to a huge amount of knowledge when it comes to financial topics. The For Dummies series, for example, is renowned for simplifying complicated topics and making them easier to grasp and there are a number of other specific titles, such as The Richest Man in Babylon, which help to provide the basics. The online world also offers incredible resources where reading is concerned. A simple Google search will usually turn up multiple websites where you can read about everything, from pensions to corporate investment.

    Get some first hand knowledge

    Once you’ve started to gain a basic understanding of the financial matters that most interest you it’s often worth talking to someone who has been working in the industry for some time. You might start with something as simple as an appointment with a financial adviser who can explain how different financial products fit together or by attending lectures or seminars that are given by the experts. The financial services industry also puts on events, whether these are hosted by firms in the sector or by regulatory bodies, and these can be an incredibly useful source of information especially about specific or specialist topics.

    Develop what you’ve learned

    Once you understand the fundamental principles of the financial products or systems you’re interested in it’s time to refine that knowledge. That could mean a visit to the local library to pick out specific titles that will help you to advance further – or booking yourself onto a course that covers a niche you want to know more about. The financial services world is constantly evolving and becoming an expert means committing to ongoing learning.

    If you currently don’t have any financial knowledge but you’re keen to become an expert there are lots of opportunities to make a productive start. Find out more by booking onto our Finance for Non-Finance Managers Training Course…

In-House Training with PTP

PTP stands for Practical Training for Professionals and our aim is to make our training as practical as possible so delegates can return to the workplace with skills they can implement immediately. PTP now delivers training to over 40% of the FTSE 100.

What you get for your money

What is 1-to-1 training?

1-to-1 training can be based on any of the 100 plus courses that PTP provides, it includes an initial telephone conference of up to 1 hour, a 1/2 day (3.5 hours) on-site one to one training session at your premises with one of PTP's expert trainers and then a further telephone conference call of up to an hour within 2 weeks of the on-site visit.

You have the option of a line manager being involved in both telephone conferences, the second telephone conference which can be for feedback and action planning is generally scheduled during the on-site visit.

Who does 1-to-1 training suit?

Individuals taking on a new challenge or responsibilities. Professionals who want a trusted "sounding board" and thinking partner. Executives or managers who want to enhance their leadership effectiveness to achieve organizational and career success. Executives and professionals wanting to compete successfully but still retain balance in their life. Individuals who want to understand their blind spots so that they don't stand in their own way on their path to success. Executives and Professionals who want to improve their interpersonal skills so as to be more effective with bosses, peers, subordinates, or people in general. How much does 1-to-1 training cost?

A 1-to-1 training session costs from as little as £400 + VAT and will include an initial telephone conference of up to 1 hour, a 1/2 day (3.5 hours) on-site training at your premises and then a further telephone conference call of up to an hour within 2 weeks of the on-site visit.

What is U-Choose?

Choose from any of the 150 plus courses that PTP provides, and choose from 1 of our 50 plus UK wide training venues. You must book for 2 or more delegates and at least 4 weeks in advance, but that’s it, the course you want where you want it. The reason we ask for a minimum of 4 weeks notice is to enable us to market the course you have scheduled to other companies and organisations. However, if we fail to sell any additional places we guarantee to run the course just for you.

How much does U-Choose Training cost?

U-choose costs the same as our normal open courses i.e. the normal delegate rate. This includes lunch and refreshments throughout the day, framed certification and comprehensive training notes. A U-Choose booking can only be confirmed once we receive payment which can be made via credit/debit card, BACS or cheque. Payment is due at least 4 weeks before the date you request. Please note to be eligible for U-Choose you must book a minimum of 2 delegates on the same course & date.