UTServicesHRCTDCourse finderEnglish Conversation Techniques for Managers - 1

English Conversation Techniques for Managers - 1

Even after years of experience as a manager, team lead, supervisor, or HR-adviser, it can still be quite a feat to conduct particular conversations with your people in English. You may feel that your English language skills are generally good enough to do your job well; perhaps you even master specialist jargon. The difficulty, however, lies in finding the right words when you have especially challenging conversations.

Maybe you find it tricky to communicate discontent with someone´s performance or behaviour, or to talk with your employees when someone gets seriously ill or passes away. You may find it hard to manage conflicts or to let an employee know that their contract is not being renewed or particular perks are not being granted. Such conversations require that you offer both clarity and compassion, that you put clear boundaries in place and ensure the employee feels supported. It´s enough to make one feel like a tightrope walker in one´s own mother tongue. In a foreign language, the task becomes even greater.

NB: The first and second course can be taken independently from each other, however, it makes most sense to take them in order. Course 1 lays the foundation for enhanced conversations in English between a manager and an employee. Course 2 provides more advanced techniques and topics that touch upon dealing with personal circumstances within the professional context.


The focus lies on refreshing your existing knowledge, learning new ways of expressing yourself, and practising with conversation techniques - both speaking and listening - so that you learn to master difficult conversations with ease and confidence.

A common class format will be discussion on the topic, conversation structure, and language, followed by one practice conversation in the main room with feedback, and then one-on-one practice in breakout rooms for further integration. There will also be room for discussion after the practice rounds to evaluate the conversations in terms of both successes and issues so that the classes remain tailormade to your needs. The methodology is a crossover between English language learning and communication techniques.



This course consists of 6 sessions of 1.5 hours each over the course of 6 weeks. No additional time investment is needed outside of class, so there is no homework and no level test before or at the end of the course.

There is a possibility for teams to register as a group (date and time tbd – please contact m.j.beurskens@utwente.nl) and for people to register individually for a mixed group (see dates and times below). The group size will be between 6 and 8 participants.

The classes will be offered via Canvas & Microsoft Teams. There is no need for pre-existing knowledge of the learning platform.

  • Course code


  • Programme is for

    Staffmembers of the UT

  • Date

    Check the available course dates on the page below 

  • Time

    Check the available time slots on the page below 

  • Course fee

    UT-employees: €237,50 

    Service departments will be charged with the course price, so you do not pay yourself. You need permission from your head of department, and a project number. 

  • Trainers

    Mieke Beurskens 

  • Location

    via Canvas/MS Teams online

  • Maximum participants

    Maximum 8 participants

  • Course materials

    No course materials needed

  • Requirements

    The course will be given at B2-level or upper intermediary level (see CEFR for reference). No intake is required, and anyone is welcome no matter what your initial level is.

Further information
UT Language Centre
Support Office
053 - 4892040
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