People Engineering for Engineering People
Email or call me for in-house presentations: Tel +27825585311

Why this course?

It would seem that Engineers spend most of their time at University learning to do the sums of engineering - learning to deal with the Technology.
It would also seem that Engineers spend most of their working life dealing with PEOPLE.
This two-day workshop is aimed at equipping people in the engineering and related professions with the foundations of the people skills required to cope in an engineering environment.

Who have already been?

More than a thousand engineers have already attended People Engineering for Engineering People.
The workshop has also been presented on an in-house basis to numerous companies, among whom are
  • De Beers
  • Nam Water
  • Umgeni Water
  • Columbus Stainless Steel
  • TransTel
  • Polifin

So what's it about?

The idea is to provide you with a few "Instruments" to find out what makes those around you "tick".
Once we have identified their needs, we can go on and develop strategies for matching their needs with what we have to offer, and matching what we want them to do with what they need.
We also take a fresh look at our traditional beliefs about conflict, and we consider times when conflict can be good rather than bad, provided it is managed properly.
We take as a point of departure that the best way of communicating is by obtaining information, rather than by disseminating it. We communicate best by looking, asking questions and listening.  All these skills are convered in the workshop.

What happens?  What topics are covered?

The course is a blend of exercises and short talks. We do an exercise, and discuss what we learnt from it.  There are no boring lectures.

Facing the rockface:  How to recognise different temperaments and convince them of your point of view

We use a simple model to understand various temperaments.  You may want to try this yourself by filling in Thabo Ndlela's Temperament Spreadsheet and finding out what it tells about you.

Conquering Conflict

There are two origins of conflict.  We have conflict because we differ, and we have conflict because we are the same.  This section shows how to deal with both types of conflict.  The most common mistake in dealing with conflict is that we deal with it in a scalar fasion, whereas the more effective way is to approach conflict as a vector.  Two people pulling from exact opposite directions cannot move an object.  If, however, they move closer together, it is easy to dislodge the obstacle.  We will show you how to use lateral thinking in conflict resolution.

Learning to co-operate, co-operating to win.  Group dynamics

We do not work alone.  This section shows how to form dynamic self-managing teams based on a mutual goal, positive interdependence and individual responsibility.

Listening with your ears and your eyes

The most important aspect of communication and persuasion is to find out what the other party wants.  We can do this best by looking and listening.

Dealing with cultural differences - Race and Reconstruction

We look at cultural diversity.  What causes it, what are its benefits and drawbacks, and how do we manage it to our advantage?

Making the most of meetings

Most of us find meetings a waste of time. Yet most of us spend most of our time in meetings.  Even when two people sit together in an office, or over a cup of coffee, it is a meeting.  We look at how to avoid meetings, how to keep meetings short, and  how to get the most out of meetings.

How to motivate those who work for you - managing in the middle

Many of us think the reward is in the pay-cheque.  We do a little test to see what really motivates YOU.  Then we figure out what might motivate those who work for us.  Remember - it is not just our subordinates who work for us.  The boss also works for us.  We ofen end up having to manage up and down.  This section will show you how.

Preparing effective presentations

We all dread the time we have to stand in front of a group and persuade them of our point of view.  This section is built up of a careful analysis of the techniques of hard sellers - people who sell time-share and vacuum cleaners - and we look at ways of using those techniques to present our solutions to clients, management and those around us.

Working with networks

It's not what you know. It's not even whom you know - it's who knows you that really matters.  This section deals with ways of getting your name out there so that, when a promotion comes along, they'll know who you are.

How to turn a disaster into a marketing opportunity

In this last session we put it all together by showing you what happens when you have to face a critical audience.  Some of us represent management, and some of us represent the press and we have a scenario-based workshop in which we use all the skills we learnt in the past day and a half to get ourselves out of trouble.