To kick off the 2023 new year, in January, PD&T will be launching an updated Crucial Conversations program. There have been some changes. Vital Smarts has now rebranded it’s programing and will now be known as Crucial Learning. The previously offered Crucial Conversations course has now been rebranded and will be referred to as, “Crucial Conversations for Mastering Dialogue”.

In this updated course, you will receive the same great content but with a new look, updated scenarios, and some new videos. Due to the updated content the previous version of Crucial Conversations materials will not fall in line with the new Mastering Dialogue content. Therefore, making up a previously missed module may require attending more than one of the newly arranged modules to cover all the previously missed content and will need to be determined on a case-by-case basis.

Tools for talking when stakes are high!

Whenever you are not getting the results, you are looking for, it is likely a crucial conversation is keeping you stuck. Whether it is a problem with poor quality, slow progress, declining stakeholder satisfaction, or a strained relationship on the team – whatever the issue - if you can’t talk honestly, you can expect poor results. Therefore, we are offering this course to the campus community. Due to the cost of materials, there is a onetime registration fee in the amount of$335 per person for this course.

When is Crucial Conversations for "Mastering Dialogue" training offered?

The workshop is offered using multiple sessions and can vary from workshop to workshop so you will want to make sure that you can attend all scheduled sessions. Due to the group activities involved, there is a minimum enrollment of 12 participants needed to conduct a Crucial Conversations workshop, with a maximum of 24. It is recommended you complete the lessons in order starting with lesson 1. To receive the Crucial Conversations certificate, all lessons must be completed in their entirety. 

Course Details

The in-person experience of Crucial Conversations for "Mastering Dialogue" is composed of 10 Lessons, which includes video-based instruction from Crucial Conversation experts, extensive in-class practice, group discussion, and personal reflection. 

Lesson 1: Get Unstuck

  • Spot the conversation keeping you from what you want and choose the right conversations to get unstuck

Lesson 2: Master My Stories

  • Learn where emotions come from and how to change them and to take responsibility for the emotions you bring to the conversation by owning your story

Lesson 3: Master My Stories II

  • Eliminate negative stories that impede conversations and results

Lesson 4: Start With Heart

  • Stay focused on what you really want and lay a foundation of good intent

Lesson 5: State My Path

  • Speak honestly and respectfully and share tough messages in a way that invites others into the conversation

Lesson 6: Make It Safe

  • Take steps to rebuild safety when others get defensive and talk with almost anyone about anything

Lesson 7: Learn To Look

  • Notice the signs that people are not in dialogue and identify and manage your own Style Under Stress

Lesson 8: Seek Mutual Purpose

  • Find common ground even when it seems impossible

Lesson 9: Explore Others' Paths

  • Actively listen to understand the meaning behind others' emotions and actions and respond productively when someone initiates a Crucial Conversation with you

Lesson 10: Move To Action

  • Move from healthy dialogue to taking action and achieving results

Upcoming course dates are as follows. 

You can register by visiting  MSU Registration link and searching for the course, Crucial Conversations for Mastering Dialogue. Please plan on registering and attending all sessions in the series. 

Crucial Conversations for "Mastering Dialogue" Date  Time

Crucial ConvirsationsWhat would be considered a Crucial Conversation? 

A Crucial Conversation is a discussion between two or more people where the stakes are highopinions vary, and emotions run strong. These conversations – when handled poorly or not at all – lead to strained relationships with dismal results. 

What does the Crucial Conversations for "Mastering Dialogue" training course cover?

Crucial Conversations for "Mastering Dialogue" is a 12-hour copyrighted course (developed by Crucial Learning) that teaches skills for creating alignment and agreement by fostering open dialogue around high-stakes, emotional, or risky topics – at all levels of the university.  By learning how to speak and be heard (and encouraging others to do the same), you will begin to surface the best ideas, make the highest–quality decisions, and then act on your decisions with unity and commitment.

Crucial Convirsations

Why is MSU investing in Crucial Conversations  for "Mastering Dialogue" Training?

In the spirit of Service Excellence, Crucial Conversations training can improve the safety, reliability, courtesy and competence of the employees working for our university.  Through Crucial Conversations, we learn to see issues through the lens of the stakeholder, make it safe to dialogue on important issues, work more effectively as committed team members, and problem-solve in ways that reduce barriers. Crucial Conversations can help team members learn to use their voices to discuss risky topics, have their opinions heard, participate in decision-making, and address challenging situations in the office. 

Organizations around the world have used Crucial Conversations Training to improve results in productivity, quality, teamwork, relationships, performance and efficiency. Crucial Conversations training is an investment in the professional development of our human capital and will lead to more effective teams and informed decision-making. 

Crucial Conversations for "Mastering Dialogue" teaches participants how to:

     1.  Speak persuasively, not abrasively

     2.  Foster teamwork and better decision-making

     3.  Build Crucial Conversation acceptance rather than resistance

     4.  Resolve individual and group disagreements  

Why is there a fee?

The $335 fee  per participant covers the proprietary Crucial Learning materials required for the course and for catering provided during the sessions.  Participant materials include:

  • Crucial Conversations for "Mastering Dialogue" Participant Toolkit
  • Cue cards for each lesson
  • Crucial Conversations model card
  • A copy of the New York Times bestselling book, Crucial Conversations: Tools for Talking When Stakes are High 
  • Access to additional Crucial Conversations support materials 
  • A course completion certificate

If you were to enroll in a Crucial Conversations training outside of MSU, the fee for the 16-hour course would be approximately $1595.

What course graduates are saying about Crucial Conversations:

 "It made me reflect on how I respond and act during crucial conversations. I will be able to use the training directly in my job." 

"The training creates a framework that can be applied in a wide variety of situations.  It is comprehensive not just a quick fix."

"The training gives specific advice and clear tools to use."

Want to learn more about Crucial Conversations and how to get you or your team signed up? Get in touch with your PD&T team for more information. Contact Terry Bishop at[email protected].