Skills for Sustainability

Do you want to be more effective in your career?

Interested in developing skills to help you deliver positive change through your job?

Find it hard to be heard in meetings or your job? Does networking make you cringe?

Are some of your work relationships a struggle?

Skills for Sustainability is a series of workshops, co-ordinated by Net Impact Bristol. They are designed to provide continuing professional development for sustainable change and build personal effectiveness enabling you to collaborate, innovate, inspire and communicate more effectively. Each themed workshop will use creative techniques consisting of both speaker and interactive elements to ensure you get the most out of the session.

This series will focus on the ‘softer’ side of professional development –  understanding emotions, communicating so that people listen, listening to other people, forging good relationships. Or in other words, managing yourself, other people and your interactions. These are all important factors for a successful career!

Equipping you with techniques and tips to enable you maximise how you handle difficult situations in your career, these workshops are designed to ultimately help you to champion sustainable change in organisations.

Next Session:

Skills for Sustainability – Inspiring Change through the Power of Speech

24th September 2015 (18:15 to 20:30),  Roll for the Soul Café (Nelson Street)

Speaking in front of others fills many of us with terror, even if it is on topics we are experts in. Despite hours of practice and preparation, many of us probably find ourselves murmuring and stumbling through words to an unengaged and bored audience.

Would you like to learn the art of public speaking so that you leave your audience motivated, informed and inspired?

This workshop will explore the power of language and rhetoric in motivating others, improving team morale and raising your profile. It will seek to:

  • improve your confidence in public speaking
  • improve your understanding of how to prepare yourself and others for public speaking
  • provide a practical model that can be used to deliver sustainability messages more effectively

The workshop, led by renowned professional communications coach James Cullen will consider what public speaking means to you and how public speaking features in the sustainability movement. The session will involve working in small groups to explore the five canons of Rhetoric and apply these essentials to the sustainability agenda.

The event will be hosted at Roll for the Soul Café on Nelson Street and light snacks will be available as part of your ticket. Please arrive promptly at 6:15 so that we can start the workshop on time and conclude at 8:30pm. To buy your tickets, please click here.

James Cullen Biography

James Cullen is a professional communications coach, motivational speaker and speechwriter. He has been a coach and trainer for over 12 years and helps motivate others through the power of language. James holds a BA degree in English Language and an MA in Rhetoric, and is a member of the UK Speechwriters’ Guild. James has authored the following papers:

  • Rhetorical Behaviour in “Inspirational Talk” (2010)
  • How Team Talks are Constructed in Terms of their Cooperative and Confrontational Linguistic Characteristics (2006)


Past Sessions:

Skills for Sustainability – Truly terrible meetings and how to avoid them

21st July 2015 (6.30pm – 8.30pm), River Cottage Canteen (Whiteladies Rd)

NB: this event has now happened, read here how it went!

All of us will have spent many hours in unproductive, tedious, and at times tetchy and overlong meetings and far less time in meetings with a clear purpose, great communications and useful outcomes. Some of us will have run meetings, where despite our best intentions, the meeting veered towards the unproductive and overlong rather than the clear and constructive.

This workshop will consider why we hold meetings, whether and when to call a meeting and how to plan, structure and run meetings so they are a valuable use of time for all those taking part. It will also consider whether the sustainability agenda requires or benefits from a particular approach to planning and running meetings.

Joined by Mark Letcher, an expert in facilitation with over 20 years’ experience in the sustainability sector, the workshop will comprise a mix of group and small group discussions and exercises and encourage participants to share their experience, insight and ideas on the subject.

We are very kindly being hosted by River Cottage Canteen on Whiteladies Rd and light snacks will be available as part of your ticket. Please arrive promptly so that we can start the workshop at 6:30pm and conclude at 8:30pm.

Mark Letcher’s Bio

Mark Letcher Mark is the founder and Director of Climate Works Ltd (CWL) a sustainable energy and climate change consultancy based in Bristol. CWL works with businesses, local and national government and community organisations to provide technical consultancy, policy and research and training on energy and climate issues. Mark is an experienced facilitator and trainer who works with organisations large and small on issues such as business and project planning and organisational management and structure.

Much of his work over the last 20 years has involved sitting in meetings, a fair proportion of which have not been especially productive, and some of which were entirely down to him. In this workshop he will draw on his experience and mistakes to consider why we can leave some meetings feeling energised and inspired and others bored and confused, and what we can do to make meetings a valuable experience and use of our time.


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