ETSSFLSS – Front Line Supervisor Skills

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  • Code: ETSSFLSS
  • Duration: Days 2
  • Price per delegate: £750.00 +VAT

Trained over 60000 delegates

Course delivered by industry expert instructors

Highly competitive pricing

Course Description

This two-day Supervisory Skills workshop is designed to help people understand and engage with what a line manager is supposed to do.

It focuses clearly on the key line management skills such as delegation, motivating and supporting team members.

We will also cover giving essential feedback to keep people on board, becoming more decisive, taking responsibility, managing conflict, learning how to feed upwards, establishing clear boundaries and of course setting and achieving team and individual goals.

This is a practical course, which will leave the participants feeling more confident in their ability to manage others.

Target Student

People who have recently been appointed to or who are about to be appointed to the role of front line supervisor/ team leader.



Delivery Method

Instructor led, group paced.

Performance-Based Objectives

By the end of today, delegates will be able to:

  • Identify the supervisory role
  • Recognise how to get from being managed to managing
  • Distinguish each person's unique qualities and strengths
  • Recognise unspoken supervisory responsibilities
  • Explain the nature of authority and responsibility
  • Describe the change process and the emotions it generates
  • Define motivation and how to motivate and inspire others
  • Demonstrate performance management and feedback skills
  • Deal with difficult situations including conflict
  • Identify practical tools and techniques for effective delegation
  • Recognise trust relationships and their role in the workplace
  • Add to your personal "line management toolkit"

Course Preparation

  • Identify three skills or qualities that you have that have led to you taking a line management role
  • Make a list of the things that are important to you - the values you hold
  • Make a note of the things you find difficult in line management

Day One Supervisory Skills Programme

The Line Management Journey

In small groups delegates discuss the times and places in their lives when they have managed things successfully and the skills and resources they used.

What has changed - managed to manager

As a group, participants offer their thoughts on the differences between being managed and managing.

Stepping up to being a Supervisor

What qualities or resources do you need to step up to the line management role?

Participants work in pairs on flip charts and then highlight three qualities they already have and acknowledge their best quality to the room.

All the things they didn't tell you

Here we take a look at all the things the line manager is responsible for including all the extra things that come with the role but aren't necessarily in the job description!

Hopes and Fears

Just to put things in perspective, delegates will construct a 'change curve' showing the sort of emotional journey they might experience from being first given a line management role, through the feeling of overwhelm, to seeing the light at the end of the tunnel - in other words being a confident, competent manager.

Coping with change

Delegates think of changes they have been through in recent years and label them as easy/hard/impossible or imposed. We then consider what it might be like for those who are being managed when a new line manager is appointed - again based on delegates own experience.

Authority as a Supervisor

What is it? How do you get it? We will have a bit of fun turning up and down authority, from none upwards - just to show it can be done and the effect it has.


Building on the last exercise we look at how all sorts of other attitudes can be projected. Everyone can change their behaviour quickly and easily and in this exercise, line management course delegates get a chance to practise projecting a number of different attitudes and seeing the impact they have.

Time Management and Delegation

Getting things done. We will play with different ways line managers can ask people to do things - being woolly or vague versus being clear and concise and the do-tell style of coaching.


Delegates create their view of Communications and then we discuss the different stages and how to make them work for you. So often we assume that having delegated something to someone, we will be clearly understood, and can turn our attention to our next task. How wrong we are. More often than not, what we say and what we mean and what someone hears and what they do, are actually quite different.

On this line management course we use a simple model to follow through a communication cycle, showing how easily we can be misunderstood but how with care, we can put our attention where it is needed so that everyone is clear

Trust and Risk in Managing others

We believe that creating trust is a key skill for anyone managing others. Too often, however, many line managers expect their team members to trust them without making the requisite effort needed for people to feel safe.

This is an exercise that looks at the difference between trust and risk. How to engender trust in someone else. How easy it is to lose it and the effect that has on delegation.

The Art of Saying No/Yes

A look at the language people use when they have to deliver tough messages, introduce a new idea they are not sure the other person is going to like, ask someone to do something for them or say no.

  • Turning people down without actually saying 'No'
  • Empowering others to deliver
  • Saying 'Yes' while not giving away too much or taking on too much
  • Giving the Good News first

Personal Planning

  • What are you individually taking away?
  • What are you going to work on before the next session?

Practice / Preparation for Supervisory Skills Day Two

Delegates will be asked to think of two difficult line management situations.

  • One where they felt they were managed poorly
  • One where they themselves managed someone else poorly (either they knew it or were given feedback later that they didn't handle the situation so well).

Day Two Supervisory Skills Programme

Review of day one

A review of the last session and a look at anything arising from the practice/ preparation.


Persuasion, Motivation and Inspiration.

We ask the participants: What motivates/de-motivates you? What motivates others in your team?

This is a pairs/threes exercise on flipcharts, which examines the differences in what motivates and de-motivates each delegate and the people they manage. It is an awareness exercise, which then asks the question "Are you doing everything you could do to motivate your team?"

Linking Values to Life

We provide a model to help people cascade the process of personalising the company values to make them more meaningful.

The idea here is to help make your company's values more than good words, to make them more of a foundation for people's behaviour and commitment.

Setting Targets

Line Management targets can motivate or de-motivate. Here we will look at how setting clear objectives, targets and expectations can motivate the team to want to achieve them all and more!

We compare aspirational targets with a baseline approach and how they translate into a sense of success or failure.

What message do you as a line manager want to send? What is important?

Managing performance

This line management exercise looks at some of the feelings that get in the way of people managing poor performance effectively and where that leads us.

Blame and its effect on behaviour

This exercise shows how good line management can avoid finger-pointing and blame in order to more comprehensively resolve a difficulty.

Giving and Receiving Feedback

This exercise looks at how to give effective feedback by asking the questions: What am I feeding? What feelings do I want to leave? Is this feedback helping the problem or creating new ones?


Building on the last exercise we look at the useful line management tool of giving acknowledgement and the effect it has. We explore the difference between praise, recognition and acknowledgement and how to avoid coming across as patronising.

Poor performers

And at the other end of the scale we look at the much feared line management process of giving difficult messages to people who are performing below par.

Handling Conflict

The other much avoided line management responsibility; Dealing with Conflict

We look at a series of short exercises for use when communication has got difficult and tensions are mounting. Many of these techniques can also be used to pre-empt difficulties before they escalate.

Here we use a technique that finds common ground when you are in the midst of an argument and need to have a calm discussion. Agreement is used to diffuse tensions and to allow people to feel heard and acknowledged.

Deliberate Misunderstanding

This is an exercise for dealing with difficult people! It demonstrates how hard it can be to get your point across in the face of other people either misunderstanding you or choosing to make it difficult for you.

Giving bad news

As in life, so in line management things can't always go as well as we'd like, and when they go wrong we are sometimes reluctant to let people know. This is a practical technique that owns up to a problem in a way that comes across as professional and in control.

Personal Line Management Style

Participants will be asked to acknowledge what it is that they do well and will get feedback from their colleagues on what they see that works about them.