Call to book: 01983 861133

Advanced Effective Negotiations with Trade Unions: A Practical Toolkit Workshop

Danubius Hotel Regents Park , 18 Lodge Road, St. John's Wood, London NW8 7JT

Negotiating with unions can go wrong; when it does, the cost to your organisation will be huge. Industrial action, low staff morale, a disrupted workplace and negative corporate reputation can all be avoided.

Registration fee: £450 plus VAT per delegate

All dates and locations


Understanding the process, psychology and practicality of effective negotiations will have long-reaching benefits for workers and management alike.

This crucial workshop has been designed using feedback from our delegates and industry expertise. You should attend if you have a basic grasp of negotiations.

Attend this workshop to:

  • Understand the psychology, process and behaviours of the negotiating process
  • Gain insight into historical and current UK industrial relations and legislation
  • Monitor, manage and influence social media challenges
  • Maximise your relationship with your workplace unions and develop a joint-problem-solving culture
  • Understand the potential impact of Brexit on employee relations
  • Gain the tools to apply new skills in resolving real-life negotiations
  • Move past brinksmanship and stalemate to facilitate honest, open dialogue
  • Take part in practical exercises and roleplay
  • Learn how to foster positive union relations both day-to-day and during negotiations

Which functions will benefit from attending

  • Directors, Senior Managers, HR and Recruitment professionals, Employee and Industrial Relations, Employment Policy, Legal, Trade Union Representatives, Employment Law, Operations, Conciliation and Arbitration, Directors and Managers with industrial and employee relations responsibilities

Hear from


Coffee and Registration

Derek Luckhurst

Derek Luckhurst

Training and Development Director

View Bio
IPA logo

Derek Luckhurst

Training and Development Director , IPA

Derek Luckhurst has been the Training & Development Director of the IPA (Involvement And Participation Association) since December 2000 responsible for consultancy services. Previously he was the Manufacturing, Science And Finance Union’s National Secretary for Legal & General since 1996. He was instrumental in the establishment of a breakthrough partnership agreement, which was signed at L&G in 1997. At IPA he has developed partnership workshops for the Inland Revenue, the Audit Commission, Royal Fleet Auxiliary, Aintree NHS Trust, Bolton NHS Trust and Santander. In conjunction with the workshop, he has written a partnership induction programme specifically tailored for people working on partnership initiatives. He is the author of “A Practitioner’s Guide To Sustaining Industrial Partnership” published by the IPA with DTI support in 2004, updated and re-published in 2011. He also wrote a Staff Representatives’ Handbook, which has been commissioned by Sanctuary Housing, Halfords, BP, Coral Racing and Avon Cosmetics. He has worked with many organisations helping them with employee relations including United Welsh Housing Association, Steria, Standard Life, Santander, Norwich Union, Royal College Of Surgeons, The General Medical Council, The Prince’s Trust, Egg, Blue Arrow, Royal National Institute For Deaf People, Bank Of Ireland UK Financial Services, The Independent Police Complaints Commission, The Healthcare Commission, Avon Cosmetics, The Royal Fleet Auxiliary, The National Asthma Campaign, National Grid, Peabody Trust, British Bakeries, The Employers Organisation, Pizza Express, The Communication Workers Union, The Post Office, De La Rue Cash Systems, Peabody Housing, Corps of Commissionaires, The Cancer Research Campaign, South East Water, Inland Revenue, Eurotunnel, Siemens, Pfizer, Terrence Higgins Trust, Electoral Reform Services, Opportunity Links, Kelloggs, the CBI, Skandia, AOL Broadband, Vodafone, Kimberley Clark and BP, Pearson, City & Guilds and HCL. Derek has also introduced the option-based consultation model for the effective involvement of the representatives of employees, be they union or non-union in identifying opinions and influencing the decision making process at a strategic level within organisations. Described by Keith Sisson, Emeritus Professor of Industrial Relations at Warwick Business School as a ‘landmark in UK industrial relations’, Derek has been busy training managers and employee representatives in option-based consultation in organisations like the Healthcare Commission, Standard Life, Bank Of Ireland, United Welsh Housing and many others. Derek leads the IPA’s influential Best Practice Network and, with them, developed the “15 Strategic Questions” that have proved popular with representatives and senior managers alike. He is also the author of “The 5 Key Steps To Employee Engagement”, published in 2007, which explores the unique role representatives can play in ensuring staff lose the cynicism that blocks engagement. He was a key player in developing a framework for flexible working in Legal & General and was responsible for the training of both managers and union representatives in how the concept should work in practice. A new anti-harassment and bullying procedure was established during his term of office together with improved grievance and disciplinary processes.

Introduction to the day: identifying individual and corporate learning objectives

Understanding industrial and employee relations in the UK

  • History of UK industrial relations
  • Changes and context since 2000
  • Effects of the Information & Consultation regulations
  • How the expanse of staff forums in the UK have influenced how organisations deal with trade unions.
  • The changing political landscape: the direct effect on industrial and employee relations in the workplace
  • The potential impact of Brexit: possible scenarios to expect

Morning coffee and networking

5 Key steps: Option Based Negotiations - Legislative overview and recap

  • National policies, regional structures, workplace strategy and general aims
  • Understanding industrial and employee relations in the UK, how they differ, and the differences between trade unions and staff forums
  • Understanding the relationship and links between the “corporate” trade union, regional officers and workplace representatives
  • Understanding perspectives: ideology, negative experiences or a lack of understanding
  • Dealing with inexperienced union reps

The issues of training and support offered by trade unions to its representatives will also be discussed.

  • How these get confused with negotiation
  • How legislation is interpreted
  • TUPE
  • Redundancy
  • Health & Safety
  • Pensions

Best practice social media issues

  • The role of social media and informal industrial action
  • How social platforms create momentum and support
  • Essential tools for monitoring, managing and influencing social media challenges

Lunch and networking

How to deal with and resolve challenging situations

  • The key 15 questions
  • What causes them?
  • Case study: how misunderstanding and rumours can occur unintentionally
  • Improving communication of mutual strategic narrative to clarify perspectives
  • Moving from negotiation to consultation: key steps
  • National bargaining versus local
  • Co-ordinating multi-union negotiations
  • Unconscious bias and its role in development of conflict and barriers to its resolution: choosing the appropriate response

The 10 Leader Exercises

 An exploration and analysis of the engaging behaviours that managers need to display in all meetings with trade union representatives. Delegates will use this briefing to establish an in-house code of conduct

  • Identifying what consultative behaviours are for all parties: assertiveness and clear communication
  • Understanding the behaviours that disengage
  • The psychology of negotiations: human nature and how it informs the different roles in a negotiation

Afternoon tea and networking

Dealing with trade union representatives on a day to day basis

A detailed analysis of:

  • Handling disciplinary cases
  • Handling grievances
  • Understanding the operational issues from a trade union perspective
  • Developing a joint-problem culture
  • Impact of general right of being accompanied in individual meetings
  • What the union representative is there to do and what they are not there to do

Practical exercises and roleplay

Action planning, next steps and sources of on-going support

Each manager will develop a personal action at the end of the training day. Additional reading materials will be provided to support the learning.

Wrap up and end of workshop

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