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This experience trains leaders and teams to get better at building positive relationships when conducting difficult conversationsIt consists of four hours of training and practice.

During this workshop you will get better at these four skills:


1. Accentuating the positive in everyone around you

2. Listening to learn something new and discover what you have in common with people that have different beliefs

3. Asking positive questions to get others to tell stories about when they've been at their best and to share their vision for a better future

4. Resolving conflicts in a way that builds trust, strengthens relationships and reduces unhealthy stress

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This experience trains leaders and teams to get better at creating positive results when conducting difficult conversations. It consists of 4 hours of training and practice. 

During this workshop you will get better at these four skills:

1. Using a 3 step process for conducting difficult conversations 

2. Telling positive stories that build rapport and inspire others to thrive, not just survive when dealing with adversity

3. Coaching high, middle and low performers to be committed to working together to achieve meaningful goals

4. Giving feedback that increases confidence, competence, and commitment

Practice Practice Practice 


The Power of Deliberate Practice

The Positive Conversations Training does more than just share good ideas. The participants in our programs actually practice the positive conversation skills we teach. Knowledge is important it just doesn't change behavior. To get better at a skill you need to engage in deliberate practice.


Anders Ericsson, the world’s leading scientist studying expert performance has proven deliberate practice, not "natural" talent, is the reason high performers excel. 


Knowledge is important, but it does not change behavior. To keep getting better,  leaders and teams need to engage in deliberate practice on a regular basis.

Deliberate Practice has the following criteria: A specific goal; Expert coaching; Consistently learning from feedback so you can build on your strengths, correct mistakes, and continue to grow; Challenging yourself to move outside your comfort zone and learn something new; Building a foundation of strong fundamentals; Being focused and involved, not simply listening passively to others’ advice; Using visualization or mental practice to rehearse a specific skills you want to improve.


To learn more about the Positive Science behind this training

and the importance of Deliberate Practice



In addition to our interactive training experiences we also provide: 
  • Individual  & Small Group Coaching
  • Pre & Post Strengths Assessments
"Are you trying to create positive change in your workplace, family, or community? If your answer is 'yes,' your number one priority today should be to get a little better at bringing out the best in everyone around you... one positive conversation at a time."

Bill Durkin

"Bill has been more than just a leadership coach. We have a family business, and he helped my entire family get along better."

 Artie Cichy, VP SurfaceWerks, Inc.

"Your workshops and coaching has produced measurable results in productivity as well as real improvements in communication. Thank you for everything Bill."                                             

 Jack Schacht, President, Illinois Trade Association

“I appreciated hearing the simple, practical

ways our focus and choice of words can

impact our conversations.”   

Don Raineri

I thought the zoom breakout sessions

were awesome!” 

Amie Cargola

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The skills in our Positive Conversations Workshops are taught in a group session that include leaders and teams who ask to be in the program. When engaged people go through the learning experience together, relationships get stronger and positive change happens faster.

One Positive Place

The training is built on an action learning model.

There are no lectures. Knowledge is important, but it doesn't change behavior. We all need "deliberate practice" to improve relationships, bring out the best in everyone, and also inspires a diverse group of people to work and live better together. 

During the workshop, you will be involved in a variety of small group exercises designed to help you PRACTICE the skills needed to improve your relationships in your workplace, family and community and get better at coaching your team.

The timining of all training experiences are customized to the unique needs of each client.



To help leaders and teams develop positive habits during the training, each person will have an opportunity to participate in our Follow-Up Process. During the 21 days following the workshop, participants will receive more education, encouragement and short positive action projects designed to support everyone as they experiemt with improving their relationships and finding better ways to bring out the best in everyone around positive conversation at a time. 

One Positive Place

“I had the pleasure of attending Bill Durkin’s program. What an invigorating experience! We focused on ‘real’ communication that leads to successful business relationships and results. Bill had obviously familiarized himself with our business environment. My management style, techniques and philosophy of work were reinforced throughout the seminar and I felt rejuvenated.”

MaryAnn Reedy, Customer Service Manager Aetna


For many leaders, group learning experiences are not enough to create consistently positive results. When new attitudes and skills are taught without follow-up and accountability, old behavior resumes quickly. Leaders may develop the desire to change; but after a few days, most people are back to their old habits. In order to ensure leaders get better at improving relationships and bringing out the best in everyone around them, Bill Durkin has developed a unique Coaching Process to enhance the value of the workshop.

The formal coaching option takes place over 90 days. During the coaching sessions, you and Bill will videotape a role-play of a conversation you’re going to have with someone. When the role-play is complete, you and Bill will review the tape and identify what went well and what you can do to improve. Your assignment after the video coaching is to have the conversation and apply what you learned. Additional coaching sessions can be scheduled after the 90 days on an as-needed basis.

Bill will also be available anytime during  the 90 days by phone

or email to answer your questions, offer guidance and make

sure positive habits are being developed. This process gives you the encouragement and support you need to get better at bringing out the best in yourself and conversation at a time.

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Clients have the option of adding the following assessments before or after the training experience.

Contact Bill Durkin for more details.

 Positive Conversations and Positive Coaching Assessments

Leaders and teams can complete a short on-line self-assessment and get feedback from others on the skills being taught in the Workshop.

Each participant has the option of taking the CLIFTON STRENGTHS Assessment 

Research conducted by the Gallup Organization shows leaders and teams who discover, develop and use their strengths are: More Engaged at Work, More Productive and Happier and Healthier.

When people are aware of what makes them talented and unique, and use their strengths to serve others, they maximize their potential, become a better teammate and bring out the best in everyone around them.

Learning to have POSTIVE STRENGTH-BASED CONVERSATIONS is a great way to help your team thrive during  times of uncertainity and change.

"There is no more effective way to empower people

than to see each person in terms of his or her strengths."

Don Clifton  


One Positive Place

The Effects of Negativity in the Workplace

ByAndra Picincu

A negative work environment can lead to diminished performance and poor employee morale. In the long run, it may harm your company's reputation and affect your ability to attract talent.

Employees who left their jobs due to bad company culture may have cost organizations over $220 billion over the past five years, reports the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM). The real cost of workplace negativity is much higher, though.

Workplace Negativity Hurts Your Bottom Line

About one-third of employees say that their managers don't encourage a culture of open communication, according to the SHRM. Approximately one-quarter don't feel respected and valued at work. Bad management, gossip, workplace conflicts, and other factors can all affect employee morale and engagement. Over time, these issues may lead to a toxic work environment and hurt your company's bottom line.

The University of Southern California states that workplace negativity costs companies around $3 billion a year. According to a July 2018 study published in IOP Conference Series: Materials Science and Engineering, negative actions can quickly spread from person to person and affect everyone in the organization. If left unaddressed, they can decrease work performance by up to 30 percent.

Bill is a wonderful speaker and very knowledgeable. He kept our interest by giving personal examples. By providing the tools we needed, he made things easy to understand and helped us find a new way to approach things by looking at a situation from a different angle. Bill was thoroughly prepared and related the topics of his discussion to our office, our personal lives and other situations in which we can use our core skills. We need the skills talked about in this class before we can go looking for new business.

Great class. We certainly look forward to working with you again.

-- Carol Thornton Director, Continuing Professional Education RSM McGladrey --

One Positive Place

As I reflect, Bill about our accomplishments over the last year, there is no doubt that you have had an appreciable impact on CBI Corporation. The training you offered our company was valuable, and everyone came away with thoughts and ideas that they have implemented. As important to me was the fact that you made sales calls with me. After 37 years of sales, it is easy to think you have most, if not all, the answers. You helped me realize that on a call I thought went extremely well but, as you pointed out, could have been much better. You have helped revitalize both me and CBI from a sales and marketing standpoint. You are a great guy with a lot of knowledge. We look forward to working with you again on other projects as they come up.

-- Cliff Bregstone, President CBI Corporation --

The workshop and follow-up sessions conducted by Bill Durkin for PricewaterhouseCoopers has added new dimensions to my leadership and enhanced my contributions to my work.

I’ve been able to extend myself to the teams that I lead, to elicit their participation, and to bring out the best in each of them.

Business is often a complex matter, and the heart of any business is people. I would highly recommend Bill Durkin because he has such a positive impact on people’s ability to relate, communicate, and perform. He has developed a real ability to bring people together, which is instrumental for increasing productivity and effectiveness in all business.

-- Pam Nigro, US UT PricewaterhouseCoopers --

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One Positive Place


To learn moare about Workshop, Coaching 

or speech, contact Bill Durkin at

630-215-5144 or

SIGN UP to receive the One Positive Place Leaderhip Articles

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