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I didn’t mean to say that…

By James Larter

Posted 28/02/2019

How often have you started a conversation and before you know it, it’s veering off in a completely different direction, or worse, been misconstrued in a way you had never imagined?

What may seem obvious and natural when we open a conversation, isn’t always received in the same light and all too easily good intentions can be misunderstood and we have the potential to say things we didn’t mean to say.

What wouldn’t you give for the benefit of hindsight and the opportunity to start over again?

Our skills coaches facilitate exactly this, supporting organisations and companies, large and small, all over the country by working face-to-face with individuals to practise and prepare for specific conversations, in a safe consequence-free environment.

As professional actors they realistically simulate the personal scenario each individual wants to recreate, building in appropriate specifics to their character to provide a trusted sounding block for individuals to test out technique, until they are confident they have got their approach spot on.

Learn from mistakes without causing offence

Not only that, actors provide invaluable insight into the impact of an individual’s choice of language, tone and behaviour in general. Their feedback, in character, is a unique opportunity to experience what it’s like to be on the other end of your own conversation, to see yourself as others see you. A reality check on whether that rapport you think you’re building, as how others perceive you.

In just an hour’s session individuals try out conversations, really learn from their mistakes, and grow in confidence as they re-run elements that might not have quite gone to plan.

We call it realplay and have seen some very positive results working with previous clients.

“Excellent part of the course. The one on one sessions and group scenarios were really insightful and the feedback and tips will be used. The scenarios were all spot-on and relatable to our work; the actors were top notch, engaging, supportive and encouraging.” Course delegate


In person or remote is equally as effective

We have found that remote practice realplay sessions, by video link, are equally as effective as face-to-face in person. They also have the added benefit of being more accessible to busy staff,  teams who are spread across a wide geographical area, and smaller organisations who struggle to benefit from the economies of scale of larger skills practice sessions.

Develop individuals with the confidence to communicate effectively

Everyone you work and interact with needs to be able to communicate effectively, be it as a leader, manager, within customer services or sales, and I firmly believe that practice is the single most important part of learning.

“Expertise relies on practice. Practice must be a cognitively, effortful activity involving a reflective component and quality feedback from an expert coach.”

Dr K. Anders Ericsson

If you or colleagues you work with, find yourselves inadvertently putting off conversations because you find it difficult to get started, or have had conversations in the past which you know could have gone better, get in touch to find out more about how we can help.

We look forward to working with you.

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