Councillor Development Courses

We offer a range of in-house Councillor Development courses.  Following discussions with you regarding your requirements, we provide you with a training proposal which includes suggestions for content, duration and delivery methods.  These sessions can be delivered as repeated sessions or one-off sessions and we can accommodate timings such as evening courses as well as those delivered during working hours.  Popular courses in this category are:

Building Effective Councillor / Officer Relationships

This event is for any Councillor wanting to develop effective and positive working relationships and is normally delivered over 2 hours

  • The importance of an effective working relationship
  • Roles, pressures, responsibilities, power and influence
  • Building trust and rapport
  • Effective communication and constructive challenge
Chairing Skills

This event focuses on improving skills relevant in formal committee meetings and is normally delivered over 2 hours.

  • Chairing the meeting, responsibilities of the chairperson
  • Questioning and listening skills
  • Managing difficult situations, personalities and challenge
  • Time management and keeping on track
Elected Member Appeals

This half day event is for councillors who may need to sit on a Hearing or an Appeal Panel. It provides a practical guide to sitting on a Panel and your role within it.

  • Legislative framework including key case law
  • Procedures in relation to hearings and appeals in the following circumstances:
    • Conduct
    • Capability
    • Redundancy
    • Some other substantial reason
    • Grievance
  • Making the decision
  • Implications of the decision
Role of the Frontline Councillor

This event provides an overview of the local Councillor role and is normally delivered over 2 hours

  • The Councillor and the Council – leadership roles
  • Managing case work
  • Representing the community and constituents’ expectations within the Council
  • Maintaining your health, safety and wellbeing
  • Developing yourself
The Council as Employer

This half day event is aimed at councillors to enable them to understand the role of the council as an employer, its legal obligations, the contractual arrangements between the council and its employees, relevant policies and the contribution councillors make in this key area. It is usually delivered over 3 hours.

  • The Council’s role as an employer – The legal entity, delegation, liability
  • The Contract between employer and employee
    • Different Terms (Express, Incorporated, Implied)
    • Common law duties
    • Statutory rights of employees
    • What the council can expect from its employees
  • Your role as Councillors
    • Confidentiality
    • Recruitment and the recruitment process
    • Employment legislation
    • Appraisal and its purpose
  • An overview of key HR policies – Grievance, Discipline, Capability
Resilience and Wellbeing for Councillors

The world of local government is a challenging environment of constant change, which is both reactive and fast-paced.  To operate in this environment, we need to develop resilience and manage our wellbeing. This workshop will delve into how we, and others, react under pressure and explore techniques to relieve this and support our wellbeing and that of others to achieve balance. This event is normally delivered over 2 hours.

  • Recognise where stress comes from and how we react to it
  • How to build resilience in yourself and others
  • Maintaining perspective and balance
  • How to apply the 5 ways to wellbeing
Time Management

The role of a Councillor can be all consuming. This session will provide some tips for councillors to support them in identifying their priorities, managing their time to achieve objectives and recognising when and how to delegate to others. This event is normally delivered over 2 hours.

  • Causes and symptoms of time management problems
  • Identifying and setting priorities, planning and time allocation
  • Making best use of time and discover where to focus your time
  • Personal strategies for managing paperwork, email, telephone calls and meetings
  • Recognising when someone else is better able to deal with an issue
  • Maintaining a work life balance through prioritisation of work
Communication and Engagement

Building rapport and connection is an important part of making a difference.  This session will explore how to build networks, work collaboratively to achieve results and gain better insights into the perspectives and viewpoints of others.  This will help to influence, create support networks and get things done.  This event is normally delivered over 2 hours.

  • Building rapport and trust with others
  • Listening to hear
  • Being open to the views of others and remaining impartial
  • How to work effectively with others to achieve shared goals
  • Exploration of different communication styles and methods
Strategic Leadership for Councillors

An opportunity to explore the leadership role of a Councillor both within the community and the formal committee structure of the Council.  This session will explore skills that support effective decision making, taking a leading role on key issues and having an impact for the community and service users. This event is normally delivered over 2 hours.

  • What are the leadership roles and responsibilities of a councillor
  • What makes an effective leader
  • How to interact with others to maximise impact and influence
  • Key practices of successful leaders
Enquiring and evidence gathering

This session will focus on questioning and listening skills to support Councillors to develop understanding and gain different perspectives on key issues.  These skills are particularly helpful in Scrutiny and Cabinet/Executive roles but will also provide support in gaining clarity and better appreciation of the needs of the individual and the work of officers. This event is normally delivered over 2 hours


  • Different questions for different purposes, know which to use and when
  • How to maintain impartiality and be open to learning and new insights
  • Key practices for successful evidence gathering
  • Types and sources of information

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