Local Government Special Topic Workshops

We offer a wide variety of special workshops that are tailored to your local government’s specific needs. You can customize your own curriculum by combining the courses that fulfill your most pressing staff training needs.

Think of special topic workshops as made-to-order training opportunities that can be mixed and matched from our comprehensive menu of courses to fit the demands of your jurisdiction. By choosing only the courses you need, your limited resources have the maximum impact.

We can tailor training for different levels of managers and supervisors and can conduct training on-site in a one-, two-, or three-day format, depending on your wishes.

For questions or to schedule a session, contact David Key by email or (706) 534.4814.

Course Descriptions

  • Basic Supervision

Local government supervisors will gain the fundamental tools and knowledge they need to achieve the goals of their teams.

Topics include:

        • the supervisor’s job in a changing environment

        • supervisory leadership

        • planning work and time

        • selecting, orienting and training employees

        • evaluating performance

        • communicating, counseling and mentoring employees

        • resolving employee grievances and complaints

        • working with the budget

        • ethics in the workplace

Consider our five-day Succeeding as a Supervisor course for a more in-depth approach to developing supervision skills.



  • Change Management

Managers and supervisors will learn techniques for effectively implementing change in their organizations. Participants will review change management theory and discuss the impact of change on employees. Strategies for addressing change resistance will be discussed and practiced.


  • Communication Skills

This course will demonstrate to managers how to maintain positive workplace relationships by improving specific interpersonal, written, oral, group and organizational communication skills. They will learn solutions for achieving more effective communication in the workplace. Practical and interactive exercises will provide participants with the opportunity to reflect on their communication skills and become more effective communicators at work.


  • Conflict Management

This course will teach supervisors, managers, administrators and other team leaders how to resolve and avoid conflicts between employees. Participants will learn about effective use of conflict management tools and strategies in the context of a supervisory relationship. This course will focus on resolving personality conflicts and more substantial conflicts and will address assessment, preventive approaches and appropriate responses.


  • Customer Service for Employees

This course will examine internal customer relationships as supervisors and managers work to break down barriers between divisions and departments. Employees will learn how to examine the needs of internal customers to allow for better internal working relationships and more efficient processes, ultimately resulting in seamless services provided to external customers. Also, techniques for handling difficult customers will be addressed.


  • Customer Service for Managers

This program will show customer service managers the tools they need to effectively lead a customer service team. Participants will learn the skills necessary to create, manage and maintain a productive, customer-focused climate. The course will address the requirement to manage the team and to provide coaching support for the individuals.


  • Discipline Strategies

Managers will discover techniques for handling potentially difficult situations when discussing work performance, giving negative feedback and disciplining team members. This class will provide the tools necessary to dramatically reduce problem behaviors and performance issues.


  • Elected Officials and Staff Relationships

This workshop will help reduce friction and miscommunication between county or municipal officials and local government staff by exploring their different roles and perspectives. Participants will look at ways of finding commonality between the two groups, resulting in improved public service delivery. The distinction between policymaking and administration and other council/commission-staff related issues will be explored using exercises, case studies and group discussion.


  • Ethics

Local government leaders will examine the importance of ethical conduct in the administration of their public duties. Participants will gain knowledge about state ethics laws and regulations that apply to employees. They will also discuss ethical dilemmas that often confront government employees and the value of strong local ethics ordinances.


  • Interviewing Skills

Participants will sharpen their abilities in open-ended questioning, active listening and reading body language. They will learn to apply these techniques to various types of business interviews, from hiring and coaching to assessment and termination. They will also receive clear guidance on key legal issues and specific do's and don'ts.


  • Leadership Development

This course will address the essential skills of successful leadership that go beyond technical expertise, such as the ability to inspire and direct others. Participants will evaluate their own leadership perspective—how they see life, analyze problems, negotiate issues, make decisions and interact with others. They will also explore the value of good communication and the importance of maintaining relationships.


  • Leading During Difficult Times

Participants will explore ways in which the possibilities of cutbacks, reorganizations or restructuring, job reassignments, and radical changes in service delivery can be opportunities for making positive change. They will also learn how to address the possibilities of declining employee morale and productivity.


  • Media Relations

Elected officials and managers will get training in interacting adeptly with the media and getting across their organization’s message effectively. This course helps participants understand the motivations of journalists and how best to communicate with them. Participants will learn how to best prepare for interviews, how to answer questions carefully and succinctly, and how to stay on message.


  • Motivating Today’s Workforce

Managers and supervisors will address what truly motivates today’s workforce and learn low- and no-cost methods to reward and recognize staff. Participants will learn how to build and harness their influence to motivate their teams and explore the powerful role of informal leaders. They will discuss the difficulties of maintaining morale when organizations are having to do more with less and how to keep a focused staff during major organizational changes.


  • Organizational Excellence

Managers will discover ways to improve performance and employee retention by investing time and resources in their people. This course will deliver outstanding workplace tools to build return on investment (ROI). Managers will learn the essence of coaching high performance teams, coaching for succession planning and improving crucial communication skills to support the mission of the organization.


  • Performance Appraisals for Managers

Managers will learn how to refine and maintain their systems for effective employee management by setting and tracking goals to meet community and personal objectives. Managers will learn how to conduct performance appraisals, and they will discover techniques to effectively coach, train and support their team members to top performance.


  • Performance Measures

Managers will learn how to maximize the potential of their team by evaluating performance in their employees. Training will cover different types of performance measures, and participants will learn to identify what they need to measure and how to go about doing it by writing a comprehensive set of workload, efficiency, effectiveness and productivity measures. They will also explore benchmarking as a strategy to improve services.


  • Power and Influence

Organizational leaders will focus on techniques for maintaining their authority and producing results by transforming their power into influence. They will discuss ways of selecting an appropriate influence strategy and acting assertively.


  • Problem Solving

Managers will learn to use a variety of thinking styles, methodologies and creative processes to achieve their organization’s mission. They will discuss strategies for enhancing their critical thinking skills and finding creative solutions to problems. Participants will learn to leverage their personal thinking preferences using tools and techniques based on cutting-edge technologies.


  • Project Management

Managers will enhance their decision-making strategies by adopting quantitative and qualitative techniques to evaluate alternatives and recommend the best choice. They will conduct a task analysis in order to generate a network diagram, Gantt chart and Risk Analysis. Given project tasks, cost data and resource information, they will analyze all resource conflicts and develop the project budget.


  • Public Speaking

Participants will learn how to better convey their messages when speaking to groups and presenting ideas, concepts, projects, recommendations and reports. Participants will gain skills in developing presentation content, delivering an effective presentation and dealing with the media. The course explores different speaking styles and varying preparations required for neutral, friendly and hostile audiences. All participants will make a presentation during the class.


  • Strategic Planning

Participants will learn a system for establishing a common direction for their organization to help guide future activity and plan for long-term health. This course will introduce participants to the principles and methods of strategic planning for organizations and will make them aware of various types of plans and planning terms. They will also learn to critique existing plans and design a planning process for their organization or a case study organization of their choosing.


  • Stress Management

This course will help participants understand and diagnose the stress in their lives, identify the stressors that can and cannot be controlled, and assess their readiness to make changes. There will be methods to help participants develop a systematic approach to eliminate stressors, manage their time and implement short- and long-term coping mechanisms.


  • Succession Planning

Upper and middle managers will have an introduction to the concepts behind succession planning and their role as managers in it. They will learn the importance of training and developing future leaders so that their organization has “bench strength” ready when it is needed.


  • Team Building

Managers and supervisors will become versed in the appropriate uses of teams in the workplace. In understanding how to promote cooperation, trust and cohesiveness, they will be better able to advance the goals of the organization. Participants will be exposed to current literature and best practices concerning the successful development of teams and become comfortable giving other team members feedback.


  • Time Management

Participants will gain the personal insight and practical skills to develop and implement a framework for successful time management. Participants will adopt proven tools and techniques to make better day-to-day choices about investing their time and achieving their goals, improving both employee output and organizational competitiveness.


  • Train-the-Trainer

Personnel conducting internal training in their organizations will discover the conditions and ways in which adults learn best. Trainers will develop instructional techniques tailored to their content. They will also demonstrate their teaching style, which will be evaluated during practice sessions. Finally, they will discover ways to assess learner needs and to establish evaluation criteria for training.


David Key