Facilitating the Tough Stuff in Engagement

July 7 & 8. Online. 20 participants only.

an angry crowd in a room

Facilitating the tough stuff in Engagement. You know the drill: you’re facing 70 angry people in a room who all want to let you and your project team know exactly what they think about the proposal.

All you have is a white board and your skills.

Can you get the outcome everyone needs and make sure the community feels heard and listened to?

This course can help you do exactly that. While we can’t promise everyone in your room will be happy, we can promise that you’ll upgrade your facilitation skills and be prepared for those challenging and complex situations.

In Facilitating the Tough Stuff we’ll unpack the facilitation skills you need for success in increasingly complex and demanding groups and changing dynamics, without losing control of the project or the engagement process!

You’ll practice your own facilitation techniques through live simulations that get you thinking on your feet, as you’re immersed in real world scenarios. Plus individual coaching and guidance on the adjustments you can make to ensure you – and your participants – are heard.

Engagement training online

By the end of the course you’ll:

  • Know the skills, attitudes and self-management strategies you need to be a successful facilitator
  • Understand and experiment with your own natural facilitation style
  • Explore your facilitation strengths challenges such as body language, pace and tone
  • Identify how you will respond to heightened emotions in others such as anger, trauma and fear and
  • Experience a boost in your own facilitation confidence, through trying out and testing different approaches
  • Have more awareness of your own areas for development.

Best-practice theory alongside tools and practice. You’ll:

  • Explore theoretical facilitation models – and practice using them
  • Know how to anticipate and plan for tough facilitation
  • Setup the outcomes your client needs
  • Understand what is and isn’t negotiable in any facilitation and how to address them
  • Know what skills and processes you need to move groups to solutions
  • Be able to apply out-of-the-box thinking using improvisation
  • Choose the tactics to reach solutions as a group
  • Create the best environment for an empathetic engagement

Who is this course for?

Anyone who needs to develop or enhance their skills in facilitating the tough stuff, whatever field you work in.

Ideally you’ll have some experience with facilitating groups of any size and know you want to improve the outcomes.

If you’re not sure, get in touch with us.


This is an 8-hour course, delivered online over two days:

  • 8:30am – 1:00pm (includes 30-minute technical onboarding and breaks)
  • Online delivery using Zoom (you can join online and don’t need to install anything)
  • Training scenarios
  • Course material
  • Facilitation skills self-assessment

What makes this different?

You’ll experience tough-stuff facilitation as close to real-world as it’s possible to get in a training environment:

  • 1-to-1 coaching-style format so you can practice and improve your own facilitation style and techniques
  • Immersive scenarios where you have to think on your feet, and address the facilitation dilemma the same way you would in a real setting
  • tough topics – yes, the kind you’d face in a real facilitation
  • in a safe environment.

This course goes further than any other course we know of, to build your skills and grow your confidence. You’ll leave with really practical tools that you can use immediately.

virtual coaching

Your trainer: Alice Sherring

Articulous trainer Alice Sherring is a qualified town planner and is licensed by IAP2 Australasia to deliver a range of engagement courses. She has also developed courses in consultation with IAP2.

With more than a decade of experience training, facilitating and managing complex engagement processes in Australia and the USA, Alice is an award-winning dynamic facilitator and innovative stakeholder engagement specialist.

She has trained thousands of practitioners from federal, state, metropolitan, county, and local government levels; across diverse sectors including health, education, community, non-profit, energy, mining, transportation, natural resources management, planning, and environment.

Articulous trainer i stakeholder enhagement Alice Sherring

Training participants say...

Training participant
“Relatable, incredibly knowledgeable, willing to indulge in specifics that made sense to councillors, let us have the freedom to explore our own ideas but kept us on track.”
Training participant
“Alice is super supportive and brings everyone’s ideas and inputs into the course, and provides relevance.”
Training participant
Very engaging, insightful, welcoming. Alice provided an open safe space to explore a very complex topic in a very personal and meaningful way.
Training participant
Really informative and helpful. Positive, practical, provided good strategies for difficult situations.

Articulous Academy Alumni

All our course graduates are invited to join the AAA! Watch your email in the days after the course for your invitation.

Amanda Newbery and Alice Sherring from Articulous Academy

Articulous Academy Alumni is growing group and you receive special goodies: 

  • Monthly email with a detailed case study that you can learn from and apply to your own practice 
  • Early notice and special pricing for all our courses 
  • A quarterly webinar on engagement hot topics 
  • Priority access and special pricing for group coaching 
  • And more – we’re planning new goodies all the time!