Critical Conversations Workshop

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How to Ask Questions that Get The Results You Want:

The Monk's Method 


 Two monks were praying, walking and talking as they do all day long. The junior monk said to the senior monk. "I'm surprised you're allowed to smoke while walking around and praying here in the monastery my dear brother. When I joined the monastery I asked our Head Monk about smoking and his answer was a resounding no. How come you are able to smoke with no problem?

The senior monk smiled and said, "Am I right to assume, my dear brother, that you asked the Head Monk whether it was alright for you to smoke while praying? "Yes," said the junior monk. "I asked him whether it was alright for me to smoke while praying, and he looked at me disapprovingly and said, "Of course not. I'm surprised you would even ask."
"Ah!," exclaimed the senior monk. "You didn't know how to ask my dear brother. It all depends on how you put it. When I joined the monastery, I too asked the Head Monk about smoking, but in a slightly different manner. I asked him: "Dear Master, Is it alright for me to pray while smoking?" And he said, "But of course my son. You can pray anytime."


In asking questions, as well as in all other aspects of communication, it's not what you say that counts, but how you say it.

The Monk's Method is part of our "Critical Conversations" workshop​. Learn more and order at significant savings.


"Critical Conversations" is a workshop that helps solve the toughest communication challenges people face daily at work. Managers consistently report that communication is at the top of the list of their challenges.


This comprehensive workshop delivers the effective conversation techniques people need to confidently tackle some of the toughest encounters at work, including performance reviews, conflict, complaints, coaching, giving criticism without offending, giving praise, effective interviews, and much more.


What It Covers

Learn to Apply Powerful Talking Tools to a Host of Challenging Communication Encounters

 Participants learn to apply specific Talking Techniques to a host of challenging communication encounters of particularly high stakes and sensitivity. The Talking, Persuading, and Influencing Tools participants learn and practice in this workshop will enable them to achieve decidedly positive results in working with others as they encounter the following TEN difficult communication situations:

  1. Giving Effective Praise that portrays sincerity and generates motivation and enthusiasm.
  2. Delivering Criticism without creating confrontation and conflict
  3. Conducting or participating in effective Performance Review sessions
  4. Conducting or participating in an effective Interview for a new job or promotion
  5. Making an Apology that touches the heart and convinces the mind.
  6. Asking Effective Questions to probe for facts and provoke for ideas.
  7. Arguing without Offending
  8. Communicating to Build Rapport and Create Trust
  9. Communicating to Create Collaboration and Engagement
  10. Communicating to Resolve Conflict and Reach Agreement

This is an electronic product in MS Word that's customizable to meet your training needs. It comes with a detailed Facilitator's Guide, PowerPoint slides, and reproducible Participant Workbook for unlimited copies to unlimited trainees. The electronic program files will be emailed to you within 24 business hours of your confirmed order.