University of Minnesota
Office of Human Resources

Professional Skills Courses

These courses provide information and hands-on practice in workplace skills such as facilitating meetings, making presentations, and managing time. If you have difficulty registering for these courses, please contact

Around the World - 180 Minutes

The University is host to many students and staff from other parts of the world. In this lively session, International Student and Scholar Services will provide a whirlwind tour of the globe by addressing a series of questions, including general questions such as:

  • What is the U of MN's largest international students population?
  • How has this population changed over time?

As well as specific questions such as:

  • Are there significant cultural differences among our Asian students and scholars?
  • What are some tips for communicating with non-native English speakers?

Bring your own questions and hear directly from a student panel about their impressions of the U.S. and U of MN.


Communicating Across Cultures

Many of us strive to find practical tips and specific skills for being more effective in our communication with people from different cultures. In this session, you'll explore some of the most common cultural differences encountered, identify your own communication style preferences, and gain concrete ideas for your next steps in developing your intercultural competence.


Conflict Fluency

April 23 & 30, 2014
9:00am - 12:00pm

210 Donhowe

Register for Conflict Fluency

Conflict Fluency Resources
The Root of All Conflict

In this two-part workshop, we will explore different models and approaches to conflict and the ways in which you can gain conflict fluency. “Conflict fluency” is the ability to interact and engage with conflict in intentional and effective ways. Participants will increase their understanding of how conflict can be constructively engaged and managed and the ways in which positive outcomes can occur as a result of conflict.

In Part One, participants will explore models and tools as applied to various conflict situations in order to:

  • Gain knowledge of strategies and techniques for dealing with conflict and the ways in which these can be applied in a variety of situations;
  • Better understand the nature and value of conflict;
  • Increase awareness of barriers to conflict fluency;

In Part Two, participants will continue to explore models and tools in order to:

  • Enhance capacity to interact and engage with conflict in intentional and effective ways;
  • Apply and practice specific tools of conflict engagement, particularly “receiving” and “sending” skills;
  • Gain knowledge and resources to assist in continuing the process of gaining greater conflict fluency.

There is a $12 fee for this course to cover the ICS instrument.


Engaging in Change: Individual Contributors

Major transitions at work are becoming more and more common. This session will outline how change and transition affect your work and personal life. This session will introduce transition and change models and allow time to practice with tools that will help you be successful in changing times.

Participants will:

  • Understand key models describing transition and change
  • Examine changes and transitions in their own work and personal lives
  • Apply specific tools to create an action plan for engaging in change at the University 


Engaging in Change: Managers and Supervisors

Supervisors and team leaders play a key role in ensuring that change and transition occur smoothly and successfully. This session will provide the tools you need to effectively manage transitions and change within your work group.

Participants will:

  • Apply change and transition models to current work situations
  • Understand how to manage polarities that may arise out of transitions and change
  • Learn tools for helping employees be successful in engaging in change at the University


Your Strengths at Work

This session will use the StrengthsQuest/StrengthsFinder assessment to help you explore your strengths and how you apply them to accomplish your goals and be an effective team member. The StrengthsQuest/StrengthsFinder assessment can be an effective tool for helping people identify their talents and apply them on the job. This two-hour course provides an opportunity to complete the assessment and explore the results with others.

Participants will:

  • Complete the StrengthsQuest/StrengthsFinder assessment and apply it to their work and personal lives
  • Explore how they have developed their talents into work-related strengths
  • Learn how understanding others' strengths can enhance teamwork
  • Create an action plan for using and developing their strengths

There is a $9 fee for the StrengthsQuest/StrengthsFinder assessment, payable by EFS# or check. The assessment must be purchased and completed at least one week prior to the workshop. After payment is received, you will receive your personal code approximately two weeks before the workshop.