Workshops and Seminars

(These can all be customized to be from one hour to half-day or more workshops)

Below are some of the most popular workshops I've done over the course of the past

12 years. Each one can be customized to address your company's culture, goals, and

specific behavioral or communication issues. They can also be crafted to be used in Corporate Consulting or Corporate Coaching work.

"Say What?"

Communication Essentials Overview

In today’s competitive business world, the more effective individual communication is, the better managers and leaders are able to engage and connect with others. Effective communication skills provide a foundation on which careers and companies are built and are a crucial component of lasting success. Good communication requires finely honed listening skills; the ability to avoiding filters and recognize personal biases; rephrasing skills and understanding the listener’s point of view. Participants in this workshop will learn about the fundaments of communication and how to craft messages that are succinct, engaging and impactful.

"We Need to Talk"

Communicating with Tact and Skill for Managers and Supervisers

Contrary to popular belief, the ability to communicate with tact, finesse and diplomacy isn’t a gift that some are born with. Powerful and effective communication is a skill that can be learned and mastered just like any other skill. This workshop covers how, as a supervisor or manager, communication can be used to develop employees and foster an empowered working environment. Topics include: developing interpersonal skills, influential communication, focused listening, tactful communication, building rapport and how to motivate and influence.

"Same Words, Different Language"

Gender Differences in Communication

Science has strongly indicated that men and women think and communicate differently. These gender communication differences are every bit as powerful as cultural or generational schisms.  These differences can also lead to significant misunderstandings between genders, and can (and often do) create uncomfortable working relationships and friction in the workplace. The ability to understand these differences can provide choices in how to better respond and manage teams. This insightful workshop explores the ten (10) basic differences at play between ‘masculine’ vs. ‘feminine’ communication styles and how to leverage the strengths of each to become more powerful and effective communicators at work and home. 


"Help! I'm working with my (dad, mom, son, daughter)!"

Understanding Generational Differences in the Workplace

The events and conditions each of us experience during our formative years help define who we are and how we view the world. The generation we grow up in is just one of the influences on adult behavior. With different values and seemingly incompatible views on work style, these influences have the potential to create conflict in the workplace. Increased understanding and management of these groups are essential to fuel creativity and collaboration. This workshop explores the differences of each generational communication style, and provides tips, tools and techniques for more effective communication.


Gathering and Leveraging Feedback Effectively

Feedback is much more than simply telling someone what you think about a project, task or performance objective. Gathering effective feedback takes work and, when done well, can result in improved performance, morale, and cooperation. Handled badly, it can result in loss of morale, decreased productivity and lack of collaboration. In this workshop, participants will learn the difference between feedback (which is centered on a person's actions) and criticism (which is centered on a person' character). Discussion will cover effective feedback tools, as well as how to give good feedback. Finally, participants will discover how to turn criticism into a positive experience for all parties.


"How to Play Well With Others at Work"

Essentials of Collaboration

Top executives repeatedly say that employees who stand out are the ones with great communication and collaboration skills. In fact, most of them rank the ability to collaborate higher than technical know-how. In this workshop, participants will discover the tips, tools and techniques to become a stellar collaborator. Participants will learn how to cultivate a collaborative work environment, "foolproof" methods for persuading and influencing others and how to develop the kind of listening skills that make collaboration possible. Participants will also discover the mistakes that “shut down” effective communication and how their actions and behaviors may be affecting the actions and behaviors of others and finally - what to do when priorities clash with responsibilities. 



Leveraging knowledge, Conflict and Power

Negotiation is both art and science, and – although we engage in some form of negotiation every day – successful negotiators have learned to master the three basic components of negotiation (knowledge, conflict and power). Participants in this session will discuss those components and hear more about how technique is secondary to following a cycle of listening, communicating and compromising. As part of this workshop, participants will engage in innovative role-playing and activities that will offer opportunities for implementing the tips, tools and skills explained in this workshop. Skill-building activities will provide participants with interactions that will reveal ingrained habits that can be barriers to successful negotiation as well as uncover hidden strengths that can be leveraged to achieve consistent win-win outcomes. 


"Oh No You Didn't!"

Conflict Management

A critical role for managers is the ability to manage conflicts between associates, with subordinates or peers. Managers need to be able to listen empathetically, ask the right questions, evaluate the people involved, and determine the right level of intervention and the best approaches to resolve conflict. This workshop helps participants explore the basic causes of conflict and review proven strategies for minimizing causes of conflict in order to prevent disagreements from occurring in the first place. Discussion will also cover how the fear of conflict can hold a person back personally and professionally. Finally, participants will learn about the positive side of conflict and how to benefit and grow from conflict.


Understanding Behavior Styles in the Workplace

Using the DiSC Model for Improved Performance

One core component of personal and professional success lies in understanding yourself and others, recognizing the impact of your communication style on others and learning how to be flexible in a variety of situations. This workshop will help participants understand the obstacles that can inhibit team collaboration and effective communication in the workplace and how it impacts workplace relationships.  Participants will also explore their own behavior and communication style with a free mini-Disc assessment tool and will identify action plans to create a team environment where they can maximize their productivity and success.


Dynamic Leadership Principles for New Managers

This workshop is designed for new supervisors to grow their management skills quickly and ‘fast track’ their leadership success. Discussion will cover proven management techniques and powerful strategies to become a stronger, more confident and respected manager. Participants will learn tools and techniques to coach employees to peak performance, mentor team members to grow, and create a stronger, more effective team. Discussion will cover how to acquire a leadership mindset and image, the emotional tools to be a supervisor, and tips for avoiding the problems that come from supervising friends and former coworkers. Participants will also review the most common mistakes new supervisors make and how to avoid them.


Success-Building Skills for Emerging Leaders

6 Critical Skills for Success

This workshop covers six (6) critical skills for emerging leaders: a) character, compassion and clarity; b) Impression management; c) understanding behaviors for improved performance; d) personal strategic planning; e) powerful communication skills and f) how to stop chasing the clock (time management). Participants will leave this workshop with a toolkit to manage these foundational skills and behaviors, as well as having made a 90-day personal plan for improvement. 


Balancing Time, Resources and Priorities

Worker Smarter, Harder and more Effectively

Participants will learn how to save time, focus energies, and increase productivity through the effective use of e-mail and voice mail, as well as how to implement prioritizing techniques that can save the day when everything is marked "urgent". Techniques and tips for effective delegation will be covered as well as the fundamental reasons delegation is an oft-overlooked tool. Discussion will also cover how to balance skills, talents, education, experience, thoughts, ideas, personal networks and connections, technology and social media to get the job done. 


Implementing Accountability in a Finger-Pointing World

Accountability – taking responsibility for our own performance – is a critical component in the equation of personal excellence, departmental success, and organizational wellness. And yet, it can be an elusive characteristic. Participants in this workshop will learn strategies on how to ‘show up’ and be present, how to pre-empt self-sabotaging behaviors and mindsets, and how to strengthen their personal commitment to accountability. 


How to Nurture, Feed and Cultivate Innovation

Many times it is difficult to see things with new eyes. All too often, “the way we’ve always done it” locks us into a rut. This mindset can prevent us from being innovative when looking at problems, processes or solutions. Achieving success, no matter how it’s defined involves being able to discover, adopt, and communicate innovative solutions and ways to improve those daily habits that build businesses as well as rewarding and meaningful lives. Innovation can help any individual or organization recognize opportunities to continuously improve, implement change effectively, engage in innovative thinking, and solve old problems in new ways.


What's Your "EMO IQ"?

Emotional Intelligence as a Business Tool

The ability to learn and model emotional awareness is a powerful business tool and, while the role of emotions at work is not often discussed, it is impossible to deny that feelings have a profound impact on both success and interactions at work. Emotional intelligence means cultivating the ability to perceive, evaluate and control emotions; cope with the inevitable ups and downs of work and life; learn to delay gratification, control impulses and read and appropriately respond to the social cues of others. This workshop helps participants recognize their own “EMO IQ” and learn self-management tips and powerful techniques to help others recognize and manage their emotions. 


Becoming a "Change Leader"

Research shows that the success rate of major corporate initiatives is only 54%; the failure of the other 46% is primarily attributed to a lack of preparation and training for key leaders. This failure to prepare and train key personnel to be “Change Leaders” has a high cost when change efforts go wrong – no only financially, but also in terms of confusion, lost opportunities, wasted resources and diminished morale. Participants in this workshop can expect to leave this workshop energized to manage upcoming or existing workplace changes, armed with information, resources, tools, tips and an individualized plan of action.


Delegation - More than Just Telling People What to Do!

Think of effective delegation as “sharpening the tool”, with the tool being co-workers and employees. Effective delegation is a balancing act: to control work, but to also let people do a job in their own way. Delegation is difficult for most people; yet – if not handled correctly, poor delegation can not only waste time, but also dollars, as well as diminish morale and motivation. This workshop covers the nine (9) steps for effective delegation and teaches participants the value of empowering their staff. 


Personal Branding and Impression Management

The Power of YOU

The power of a strong personal brand is undeniable. And – whether intentionally or unintentionally – each of us cultivates our own personal brand. This workshop covers three (3) critical areas of personal branding - Impression management (includes attire, body language, tone of voice), business attire and basic business etiquette (including telephone, email & meeting etiquette). Participants will have the opportunity to engage in problem-solving discussions and develop a personal plan of action. 


"I'm NOT Fine"

Focusing on Work During Personal Crisis

It’s not quite as easy a ‘checking your problems at the door’. Family crisis’s – including deaths, divorce, illnesses and more – can, and often do, steal mental clarity and good decision-making skills from even the best of employees. And let’s face it – personal crisis’s strike at unexpected times, and yet the work must go on. How can you stay productive when it feels as if your life is falling apart? This workshop covers techniques, tips and strategies to focus on the work at hand, organize tasks and control the things that can be controlled in order to function and work as effectively as possible. 


"Mean Girls" at Work and its Impact on Productivity and Culture

Sadly, The workplace is no different than the playground in many ways. People of all ages form cliques, carry biases and act out in anger. Statistically, 40% of women report being bullied by other women. This workshop discusses the psychology of the ‘mean girl’ dynamic and how women can consciously take control of their emotional intelligence and overcome habits and behaviors that lead to gossip, exclusion and outright bullying behaviors. 


How to Handle Negativity, Toxic Co-workers and Bad Attitudes

Nothing affects employee morale more insidiously than persistent workplace negativity. It saps the energy of your organization and diverts critical attention from work and performance. Negativity occurs in the attitude, outlook, and talk of one department member, or in a crescendo of voices responding to a workplace decision or event. Negativity at work can be harmful. Negativity often results in a loss of productivity and a high rate of turnover. Negativity is contagious. The expression "misery loves company" rings true when it comes to spreading negativity around the office. This workshop how to identify, understand and manage working with negative people at work – in meetings, in workgroups, and on projects – so that their mindset doesn’t ‘infect’ you or your team.  


The Myth of Work-Life Balance

The phrase “work-life balance” was first used in 1986 in the US to help explain the unhealthy life choices that many people were making. They were choosing to neglect important areas of their lives such as family, friends, and hobbies in favor of work-related chores and goals. This workshop is focused on helping participants learn about balance and healthy lifestyles. “Balance “ is simply a way of describing an outcome – one of happiness and fulfillment. Work-life balance is not just for people who want to reduce their working hours. It’s about responding to individual circumstances to help individuals fulfill their responsibilities and aspirations. This workshop covers typical pitfalls, and time-proven techniques to prioritize, set boundaries and re-focus on what matters to YOU.


Excellence vs. Perfection

We have all met or observed a person of excellence; they work with a markedly different level of enthusiasm and have a genuine concern for those around them. Sadly, it’s entirely too easy to confuse perfectionism (which is based on fear) with excellence (which is based on passion). In this workshop, participants will learn about the ten (10) major differences between excellence and perfectionism, and will discover strategies and techniques to build habits that will support a passion for excellence vs. an addiction to the elusive pursuit of perfection. 


Meetings - "Hell" or "Paradise

How to Break the Cycle of Bad Meetings

This workshop is designed to help participants break the cycle of meeting ‘hell’ and create a culture that embraces positive and healthy meeting habits. Discussion will cover the five characteristics of effective meetings, how to plan a successful meeting, and how to engage all participants. Participants will also discuss how to keep meetings on time and on-track; when NOT to have a meeting; and how to use action items as powerful follow-up tools. 


The Positive Power of Failure

Leveraging Mistakes for Growth

“If you can’t make a mistake, you can’t make anything.”  There's been a lot written about success - how to achieve it, how others achieve it, steps to success, habits to cultivate and mindsets to manage. But this workshop is focused on the power of FAILURE. All too often, we don’t attribute failure to ourselves, and – if we do – we miss the mark and make it an issue of character or worthiness vs. skills, mindset and habits. This workshop will help participants evaluate past mistakes to learn what strengths to capitalize on, what habits to break and what skills to develop in order to see a marked improvement in their performance.


UGH! How to Work With People You Don't Like

We all have one (or more) of these folks in our lives – personally or professionally – and it drives us nuts. The one who’s perpetually late to meetings, the one who’s a prima donna or time waster... or the one with whom we simply can’t stand to be around? Typically, we’ve been told that we simply have to ‘grin and bear it’, and yet, is there a better way?  This workshop will help participants better understand their own behavior and the behavior of others, with a specific focus on building “EMO IQ” and incorporating compassionate leadership into their work style to become more capable of working with others. 


Transforming Stress into Strength

Our coping habits are widely visible. To the observant person, much can be derived from discovering what we stress about, watching how we respond to stress, and seeing how we adapt to stressful situations. Many times, we aren't mindful of the circumstances of a stressful situation until it's over. This workshop will guide participants to answer the question, “How do I perceive and handle stress?” NOTE: This workshop is NOT about handling stress with glitter, sunshine and rainbows...rather, it is focused on helping participants learn about making conscious choices in how to respond to stressful situations.


Manage Your Attention, Not Just Your Time

There are lots of folks out there telling you how to manage your time with tools, tips, hints and guidelines on how to get things done. Yet – this workshop takes it one step further and discusses how to also manage your attention. Research shows that being in the moment can measurably reduce stress and increase cooperation and team building. CONSIDER THIS: How many times have you been talking to someone about an important task, and when you're done, you don't remember One. Single. Word? It's probably because you were also checking your email, answering a text, or looking at details for your next meeting. And then what? You have to backtrack, get the info again, and you've lost valuable time, frustrated your colleagues, and branded yourself as someone who doesn't pay attention. Participants will not only learn simple, yet effective, techniques to manage time, but also some proven strategies to improve focused attention. 


These Habits are Ruining Your Career

All too often, we don't even realize the habits that are holding us back. This workshop covers the five (5) major bad habits that can ruin even the best career. Participants will discuss: a) mindset, b) communication, c) ‘busy-ness’ vs. efficacy, d) time management and e) intentions. Focus will be paid not just on eliminating the bad habits; each participant will have an opportunity to create a 90-day strategy to replace the old habits with new behaviors. 


"Your Fears are Boring"

The Power of Calculated Risk Taking

When we meet successful people, we may be tempted to envy them for their great luck. Of course, their success has nothing to do with luck at all. That's why Virgil, the greatest of the Roman Poets, wrote 2,000 years ago, “Fortune sides with him who dares.” Virgil’s quote is a clever way of saying good fortune doesn't come to us; we go to it by taking risks. Life is all about taking risks. And we willingly take chances every day. Whether you drive, take public transportation, or walk to work, you are risking getting into an accident. Every time you go to sleep, you risk not waking up! But you go ahead and do it anyway. So how can taking calculated risks at work contribute to your success? This workshop will cover the basics of calculated risk-taking and how to evaluate circumstances to be aware of what is a worthy risk and what is not. 


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T: 817-975-3197

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Principle office in Dallas/Fort Worth, Texas

2020 by Sarah Zink Business Training 

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