Assertiveness training

Assertiveness Training

Our assertiveness training helps you to develop your confidence, by giving you ideas on how to be assertive. We then go further by giving you the behavioural tools to make the changes you want to make. Assertiveness is about finding the right balance in communication. This means that if we are too forceful we can be seen as aggressive. But if we are too soft we can be perceived as submissive.

To be assertive we need to be have a balanced approach. We need to put our point of view across, whilst showing that we appreciate the other person’s point of view. Our training gives you the tools and behavioural change strategies to become more confident in your communication and therefore more assertive.

3 Hour Virtual Workshop

We can deliver our assertiveness training as a three hour virtual workshop. This workshop format means you are involved in discussion, or activities throughout the session, because interaction is key to learning.

The content is tailored to your needs through a discussion about the participants. This means you get the training you specificaly need.


Assertiveness often forms part of our many communication skills training courses. To see how this has worked for other clients see below and take a look at more reviews of our training at

Excellent virtual presentation training

5.0 rating
October 23, 2020

Martin exceeded our expectations tailoring a virtual presentation skills workshop to our needs and giving us many tips on how to improve our presenting skills and slides. Great value guaranteed.


Plenty of time and space to ask questions

4.0 rating
October 22, 2020

Martin covers the material very clearly, with lots of interaction. He also allows plenty of time and space to ask questions which may be personal to you and your experiences and his answers are thoughtful and helpful. It results in a tailored and useful session that can easily be applied in the working environment.

Eleanor Hervey-Bathurst

Excellent virtual event training

5.0 rating
October 21, 2020

Martin Chapman delivered an engaging and thought provoking training to help us improve our virtual event presentations. Tailoring his training to our needs, he exceeded our expectations and we feel more confident and brimming with ideas on how to move forward.

Rosalind Hunter

Free Assertiveness Tip Sheet Download

Assertiveness Training - the potential

Our assertiveness training sessions are useful to help people in everyday workplace situations. Some people are naturally assertive, but many of us are not and this is where training can have a huge impact. Most of us have the potential to be more assertive, both generally and in specific situations. This means that with training we have the potential to improve.

At ITD we define assertiveness as being able to explain that you understand the other person’s needs or perspective, whilst at the same time, putting your own point of view across. And it means doing this in a calm and measured way, because being over emotional can be read as being aggressive.

Having said that, the difference between assertive and aggressive can often be blurred. This means we have to be very clear what assertiveness is and what it is not. And we do this by explaining and illustrating assertive behaviours.

Our approach to Assertiveness Training

At ITD we take a very practical, approach to assertiveness training, which means the sessions are run as workshops rather courses. As a result you are working on practical ideas that apply to everyday situations.

Our approach is to help people understand the underlying situation, to find out where they feel an assertive response would be more appropriate. Our assertiveness training workshop is based on typical scenarios from our experience, as well as the situations the participants bring into the training room. This style is a blend of training and coaching, with facilitation and instruction from our experienced trainer, making the session practical and very useful.

We explore what assertive, aggressive and submissive responses look like. Participants practice assertive responses so that you develop a deeper understanding of the impact of this approach. We look at how we need to tailor what we say to the situation and individuals involved, so that the communication has more chance of success.

At the end of the session each participant leaves with specific behavioural actions, helping to reinforce the learning. We have developed a unique behavioural change action planning tool. This is based on researched and proven behavioural change theories. It gives the participants the best chance of implementing their actions back in the workplace, therefore making the investment more worth while.

assertiveness training course

Assertivess Training Course Overview

Assertiveness training from ITD works on changing behaviours. We cover ideas on how to be assertive, then we work out how you can be more assertive in your circumstances. We develop action plans with you that will help develop your confidence, using behavioural change ideas and research.


  • Introduction and personal objectives.
  • Definition of assertive behaviours.
  • Challenges with being assertive.
  • Assertive and non assertive body language.
  • Behavioural conditioning.
  • Context of assertion with aggressive & submissive behaviours.
  • Understanding aggressive behaviours in others.
  • Assertive body language.
  • Changing behaviour in small steps.
  • Personal live situations.
  • Assertive behaviours for each participant.
  • Practice of participants situations.
  • Summary of workshop.
  • Personal actions.

Pre Workshop

  • Conversation to discuss the participants’ needs and those of the organisation.
  • Draft workshop outline tailored to your needs.
  • Agreement of agenda.
  • Participants complete a short online questionnaire.

Post Workshop

  • Participants leave with individual actions.
  • Email follow up of personal action plans.
  • Suggested conversation with their line manager on their actions.
  • Optional 121 coaching.

Learning Outcomes

Participants gain:

  • A clear understanding of what assertiveness is and how it impacts on everyday working life.
  • Specific actions for implementation immediately at work.
  • A real appreciation of how assertive behaviour is not that different from their current behaviours
  • Support in implementing assertive behaviour.

Participant numbers

The subject of assertiveness is ideally suited to small group numbers of around six. That’s because it gives people the time to open up and discuss their challenges with assertiveness. 

Client Feedback

  • “Excellent training and great trainer who held our attention for the whole day and time just flew by.”
  • “We always get great feedback for this session which we have been running for a number of years.”

Participant Feedback

  • “Very useful training which gave me ideas I will use at work tomorrow!”
  • “I can see now I need to be less direct and more assertive, especially if I want to win people over.”
  • “The action planning piece was very useful in that we produced very detailed and realistic plans.”
  • “I feel very confident that I can be more assertive in the situations I defined. The small steps approach will work for me.”

Find out more

"Assertiveness means saying what you want to say in a confident and calm way, whilst recognising the positions of others."

Why is assertiveness and assertiveness training important?

Assertiveness is vital in any work environment both from the individual’s and organisational viewpoint. A person who is assertive puts their thoughts and opinions across clearly. They manage their time more effectively, because they will discuss workload when taking on new tasks. The person who is assertive does not let stressful situations build up without saying something.

Assertiveness is important because it has such a big impact at work. In our training we have found the impact of developing assertiveness to be far more than just on the immediate situation. It helps with long term relationships. Our assertiveness training has also helped people in their personal lives.

Assertiveness training is one way of developing the skills of being assertive. We have seen people go from being very submissive, to being assertive enough to change their life at work. At ITD our assertiveness training gives you the ideas, techniques and frameworks to develop your knowledge of how to be assertive. Our training takes this one step further and applies these ideas to your situations, which means you are very clear on what you need to do to be more assertive.

Through role play and coaching we take this still further by developing your skills in situations relevant to you. It’s worth bearing in mind that being more assertive through assertiveness training, can help the aggressive person just as much as the submissive person.

Free Download - Assertiveness Training Tip Sheet

Free Download - ITD Tip Sheet Assertiveness

What is Assertive body language?

As explained above, assertive behaviour strikes a balance between standing up for yourself and listening to the other person, so that the communication is balanced and professional.

Assertiveness strikes a balance between aggressive and assertive behaviours. So let’s take a look at these in more detail. What is aggressive behaviour? Aggressive behaviour is where we show no interest in the opinions, thoughts, or views of the other person.  This means not listening, talking over the other person and not asking for their opinion.

What is submissive behaviour? Submissive behaviour is where we do not show, or communicate our own opinions, or point of view, only showing an interest in the other person. So this means, not speaking up and agreeing to something whilst inside we’re saying ‘No!’

Assertive body language – Steady eye contact, but not continuous, looking at another place, or point of rest, from time to time.  This means making all parties feel comfortable.

Aggressive body language – Continuous eye contact, glaring or staring unblinkingly at the other person. Or not looking at the other person at all. Also not looking at the other person, but only looking at a third person, or their own phone, or their computer. Pointing is also aggressive.  So aggressive behaviour can be subtle or very obvious.

Submissive body language – Body language which demonstrates submissive a approach includes standing whilst the other person is sitting. It also includes the inability to hold eye contact with the other person, and looking down for most of the time. Also not sayng things that you really would like to say. So submissive body language is about reducing your level of  engagement.

Assertiveness training

International locations where we have delivered Assertiveness Training

We have delivered this training in a wide variety of countries from across Europe, UAE and Saudi Arabia. From US and Hong Kong to Australia. This means we have a broad experience of assertiveness in different countries and cultures. Which in turn means we have almost certainly met with your challenges before and can help you to develop your assertiveness.

Some of our Assertiveness Training clients

Some of the roles we have helped with our Assertiveness Training

We have worked with a wide variety of roles in our assertiveness workshops.  From receptionists and administrators, to secretaries and office managers. From junior lawyers to customer service roles and IT managers, as well as sales people and thier managers. This shows we have a broad experience of working with many different roles and helping them to develop their assertivenes. Which in turn means we can almost certainly help you with your training needs.

What will you learn?

Situational assertiveness

Situational assertiveness is the idea that your level of assertiveness depends on the situation you are in, so that we adapt accordingly. In some situations we can be comfortably assertive. In other situations our assertiveness fades and we become submissive, or aggressive.

Understanding how the situation can affect our assertiveness, helps in developing more assertive behaviours. Being assertive with a colleague can be much easier than with a line manager, senior manager, or client. Using our situational tool can help to recognise where you could be more assertive.

We also use behavioural change tools to underpin your development of assertive behaviours in those situations you want to focus on.

For other specific communication training courses linked to assertiveness, click on the images

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Frameworks & models covered in this training

Communication Model

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Personality Model

Assertiveness Training Assertive Model

Assertiveness Model

How to improve communication skills

Body Language Model

Assertiveness Training - Behavioural Chamge Model

Behavioural Change Model

Assertiveness Training Action Planning Tool

Action Planning Tool

Typical challenges of participants on our Assertiveness Training

Participants are encouraged to explain their challenegs with being assertive. With this information we can explore specific ideas to develop a better approach. Here are some examples from previous participants:

Assertiveness Training Assertive Conversation
Assertiveness training can help in working with colleagues, senior managers and clients, and often results in better relationships for everyone.

How could our assertiveness training help you?

What does our Assertiveness Training include?

The agenda can be adapted to suit the needs of your organisation, and will typically include the areas listed earlier on this page. We always define what assertiveness is and its impact in the workplace, because having a clear definition will help you identfy the gap that requires attention.

Our workshop style means we start with a discussion of your challenges with assertiveness. This means we explore how not being assertive affects your working live, work life balance and enjoyment of work.

We explain assertiveness models, ideas and behaviours, which act as a foundation to assertive behaviours. With your challenges in mind, we apply these ideas so that you can clearly see the potential impact of becoming more assertive. 

You practise these skills in situations relevant to you. This means it will be easier for you to apply the new behaviours back in the workplace. The role plays include coaching from the training consultant.

By the end of the workshop you prepare a practical action planning using our behavioural change model, so that you are prepared for future challenges.

assertiveness at work

Assertiveness Training - Case study


Secretaries in a large international business in Paris.


The secretaries in this organisation perform a vital role in delivering a first class service to clients. They work in a highly pressurised environment. Behaviours can sometimes be reactive and aggressive rather than carefully thought through. This means secretaries need to respond assertively to aggression.


In order for the business to be as efficient as possible it is vital for secretaries to be assertive in working with colleagues. But this can be counter to the natural work style of people in a support role. Their first thought is to provide a great service. This often means  saying yes to requests.

However saying yes can sometimes lead to delivering a poorer service. This occurs when the secretary takes on too much work. They put too much pressure on themselves and as a result miss deadlines, or deliver less accurate work. The solution is to be more assertive.


We developed a half day workshop based  on a  discussion of the secretaries’ individual situations, which meant the session was focussed on the issues they wanted address. We focused on:

  • Identifying specific assertive responses to aggressive behaviours.
  • Planning how the recipient may respond to our assertion.
  • Using the ITD work style model to understand work behaviours in others.
  • Defining assertive, aggressive and submissive behaviours and responses.
  • How to develop confidence in being assertive.
  • Assertion in body language.
  • What to do when; a wide range of situations discussed and reviewed.
  • Developing confidence in identifying when to be assertive.
  • Personal action plans using the unique ITD behavioural change action planning tool.

Three months after the workshop, we followed up with a face to face session on their actions. This meant they had the opportunity to further develop their understanding of assertiveness.



The main outcomes of this session were:

  • Every secretary developed knowledge of how they could be more assertive.
  • Each secretary implemented there actions.
  • In every case the assertive behaviour created a positive response from their work colleagues.
  • The work atmosphere for each participant improved.

Participant Feedback

  • “Perfect.”
  • “Thank you, this has changed my whole approach to my work”
  • “We are all very grateful”
  • “My boss was a tiger, but now he is a kitten!”

Client Comments

“The guys were delighted with the training. It really helped them in their relationships with their managers. Which makes their work satisfaction and motivation that much higher

Why do organisations choose ITD for their Assertiveness Training?

Start a conversation

Call us on +44 (0)800 804 8086 to discuss your needs for Assertiveness Training

For Assertion in Sales Training go to our sales training website: