Dionne J.M Daniel Associate Director of Nursing at Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust
The Confident Communicator
“Over the past several years, I felt my confidence had been knocked quite significantly within my professional environment. This had a lasting impact on my self-esteem and how I presented myself in the workplace. Within my relatively new role as Associate Director of Nursing, I needed to present more and attend meetings with senior stakeholders, and so I felt it was important to build up my confidence once again.
“I called the RADA Business team directly to enquire about the various courses they have available, and to understand which would be most relevant to my needs, which is when I was directed towards their programme, The Confident Communicator.
“The tutor who led the training was brilliant – they offered support to the attendees but challenged us too, pushing us to step out of our comfort zones. For me, the most impactful take away from the course was the exercises we were taught to help prepare ourselves for discussions, meetings, or events. The focus that RADA Business places on connecting with the body and breath is something that was completely new to me prior to the training. Learning techniques to both calm nerves prior to a presentation and improve the delivery of that presentation, from loosening the jaw and stomach muscles to engaging the breath, was impactful and I still use them in my daily life now.
“Previously, I would worry about my accent and whether my peers could understand me during presentations. The tutor showed me that rather than focusing on this, I can use exercises to help portray and project my voice in a clear and confident way, which in turn will make my communications far more effective.
“RADA Business is unique in the practical experience it offers participants. Often, the other training courses I have attended focus solely on theory and, whilst this is useful, it can be hard to actually apply that theory to your own communication or presenting, without practice. To receive feedback and have plenty of opportunities to try techniques throughout the duration of the course allowed me to become more comfortable with the different exercises taught and understand which areas I needed to work on more.
“The course I attended took place virtually over three days in June 2021. Despite being back-to-back days, it did not feel overwhelming, and the course was structured in a way that kept the participants engaged and interested. This also allowed time for the group of six attendees to feel more comfortable with one another – the group environment offered a real sense of support, whilst it was useful to gain insight into the different experiences and struggles of participants. Following the Confident Communicator course, I also attended a one-to-one coaching session which was particularly useful to help me reflect on the techniques I had learnt and consolidate these, whilst gaining further feedback.
“I have taken my learnings from the training with me in various aspects of my life and still use the techniques daily. Within my role, I attend regular meetings with the Trust’s board in which I have to deliver a presentation on behalf of my department. The training has equipped me with the skills to relieve my anxieties about such meetings, prepare for my presentations, and use my tone of voice to deliver information efficiently and with impact. This has had a tangible impact, as I have been able to bring more attention to the service I am responsible for and create a compelling case for more support on my team. I am also now a permanent member of the committee and will attend every monthly meeting, meaning I can contribute to decision-making and represent my department with confidence.
“The impact of my training with RADA Business is not limited solely to my job – I am currently applying to a competitive course and will be utilising techniques from the training throughout the interview process. Furthermore, I have also decided to run for Councilor in two years’ time. The confidence I have gained from training with RADA Business has been crucial to this decision and I am sure that the exercises I have been equipped with to communicate more effectively will be constantly used in this capacity.
“I would wholeheartedly recommend The Confident Communicator course and believe it is a worthwhile investment, with great value for money. I think it is important that employers support their team and help them to develop and enhance their skills, and I would recommend RADA Business as a fantastic provider to help with this. Attending this course and working with tutors, as well as the group of participants, has truly boosted my confidence and marked the start of a really good journey for me.”
Dionne is the Associate Director of Nursing at Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust. With over two decades of experience in senior nursing positions within the NHS, Dionne now supports operational teams to become outstanding-rated practitioners.