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I am happy to provide this letter of recommendation to Robert Coates and The Management Development Group, following training completed with and by our team this year. Robert worked with all Union Benefits people leaders, including several first-time leaders starting out on their management journey. His program and approach have enabled them to recognise, understand and deal with workplace interactions effectively and professionally, even when daunting or stressful. The framework delivered supports consistency in approach within teams, and across our organisation. The mix of training types, covering group, 1:1 and interactive sessions ensures that all participants can learn in a variety of ways, supporting each other and building a deeper level of cohesiveness and trust across the group. I would recommend this training to any organization looking to develop their leaders, existing or new.

Rob Andrews – President & CEO – Union Benefits

Over the past two years the City of Cambridge Infrastructure Services Department has invited Mr. Robert Coates back a total of 7 times to deliver his training to groups of 10 staff members at a time, from Lead Hands to Directors, with exceptional results Roberts methods and techniques are geared towards creating positive and productive exchanges between staff, with a focus on maintaining accountability, respect, and empathy. This was achieved through a variety of classroom interactions, involving a number of one-on-one interactions that play out in front of the classroom. This resulted in a high degree of participation and understanding. Since completing his training course, I have witnessed a positive transformation to the departmental workforce. Staff engagement has increased, union grievances have almost disappeared, and continual improvement initiatives have gained greater traction. Overall, staff satisfaction has improved and respect among staff and coworkers has increased. I would recommend this training to any organization looking to develop their leaders, or upcoming leaders. Please feel free to contact me if you would like more information regarding our experience with the Management Development Group.

Mike Parsons – Director of Environmental Services

I have enjoyed working with Robert Cotes with the Management Development Group with one of my clients in 2023. His training was particularly good in that he combined theory and practice to ensure that the knowledge was transferred as intended. We put a group of 10 people, including 3 brand new leaders, through this training program, and the results have been witnessed by senior leadership and demonstrated by everyone. The remarkable change in behaviours and continual improvement as each individual’s learning deepens. I would definitely make the recommendation for Robert’s Leadership Training program for any organization with the goal of developing and aligning its leaders. If you have any other questions about the impact of this training, please feel free to reach out.

Erin Stephens, CHRL, CRSP – HR Consultant – Oxford HR Group

“I have known Robert Cotes for over 10 years as a client in Human Resources. I highly recommend his training program in Interpersonal and People Management Skills. In HR it’s critical that we promote “best practices” training that will help the business succeed. The Management Development Group provides training that helps deliver on that promise. Robert’s training for managers and supervisors starts with the fundamentals in communication and from there builds on developing solid leadership and performance management skills. I have participated in the training twice and have received unsolicited feedback from employees about their experience. We all agree that it’s time well spent and what we learned not only helped us in our professional lives but also in our personal lives. That’s because Robert is an engaging and passionate trainer who is knowledgeable about the business world through his own experiences and shares his insights. He knows his stuff. He is incredibly intuitive and helped all of us understand our own personal roadblocks that limit our success as a leader of people and practice new skills so that we had a renewed confidence in ourselves as managers or supervisors.”

Kim Austin, CHRL – Director Human Resources

“It’s rare to come across a Business Course that resonates with front-line workers, managers and executives. Rob Cotes’ course changed the way our employees communicated and had every employee speaking like leaders. Rob expertly challenged employees to think on their own, communicate authentically and in doing so everyone became comfortable completing difficult role plays. We frequently revert back to Rob’s training and examples for guidance and clarification. Thanks Rob, for allowing us to participate in your first-class business course!”

Sherry MacIntyre, CHRP – Human Resources Generalist

I’ve been fortunate to participate in a variety of corporate training sessions throughout my career, but the impact this training has had on my skills and confidence was immediate and continues today. As a new people leader, I felt an immediate connection with Robert. Through his interactive and engaging teaching style, he was able to quickly tap into my own personality and help me leverage my own leadership style using simple tools and approaches to coach and develop my staff more effectively. I guarantee you will leave this training experience with a better understanding of yourself and everyone you interact with every day. I highly recommend Business Communication: Interpersonal Skills/Management & Supervisory Effectiveness training to any people leaders in any industry. This training should be mandatory for leaders everywhere.

Allison Jones – Manager Corporate Communications

“Robert’s passion and commitment to his student’s success is second to none. I have had the privilege to attend his workshops recently. Robert’s sessions are in-depth in regards to people management skills and communication techniques that I continue to implement daily. I have found his teachings to be both challenging and effective in preparing both managers and staff to become leaders in any organization. His vast knowledge, interactive group participation and workshop preparedness is the best I’ve ever participated in. Robert teaches leaders the latest methods on how to “Lean into A Little Discomfort” when dealing with difficult scenarios and effectively communicating a path forward with employee “commitment” as the result. Everyone in the course left with a sense of accomplishment and a better understanding of how each of us can contribute to the success of any organization. I would highly recommend Robert’s program to any organization seeking to reduce waste and grow the bottom line in both sales and service.”

Bob Beatty –Service Parts and Aftermarket Manager

“Several years ago, I took Robert’s training even as a seasoned manager at the time, I found it incredibly helpful. The skills learned in his training continue to serve me well today. The training is practical, hands-on, and is a great investment! I highly recommend Robert’s services.”

Vera Voroskolevska – Psychologist & Social Worker

Robert has been providing training to our staff since November of 2020. To date, nine cohorts successfully completed the training with four additional cohorts booked for Q2 and Q3 of 2022. These cohorts include staff from Operations, Environmental Services, Fire Services, Human Resources, and Community Development. Participants include union executive members, lead hands, supervisors, managers and directors. At the beginning and end of each training series held to date, I have had the opportunity to meet with staff to observe the impact it's had. I consistently receive feedback that staff feel more confident in their skill level and ability to handle difficult conversations as a result of the training. Not only are our leaders feeling more confident in their abilities, but communication with staff is clearer and more direct, contributing to a positive work culture. Many staff have indicated that this is the best training that they have received and are thankful to the organization for investing in them. Robert is very organized and methodical in his approach, and exemplifies the methodology throughout every interaction. Graduates of the program have taken the opportunity to follow up with him for coaching and mentoring through challenging situations. This speaks to how he is able to quickly establish trust and rapport with staff.

Terri-Ann Kuntz, CHRP – Manager of Organizational Development

About Us

Since 1994, The Management Development Group has partnered with organizations committed to the development of their Managers and Supervisors into Quality Leaders. The way to achieve this is to upskill/reskill leadership teams to bring about the successful deployment and execution of Best Practices in the day-to-day management and supervision of their most valuable asset; their employees.

Our Approach

There are no shortcuts or quick fixes when it comes to training & development in People Management Skills. To achieve success, an organization truly needs to commit to a long-term development strategy, and that is precisely what The Management Development Group offers – long-term partnerships to achieve positive and lasting change, ensuring a return on your training investment.

Our Commitment

The company is owned and operated by Robert Côtes, who brings over 30 years of training and program design experience. His facilitation style and group leadership skills are widely acclaimed by corporate clients and graduates alike. Robert’s passion is consistently felt through his delivery combined with his undying commitment to ensure our client’s success.

High Impact Development

Our clients reach their development objectives for 3 reasons. First, our learning system is relevant, dealing with today’s management issues, and contains both educational (theory) and training (application) sessions and combined, form a powerful experiential, “learn by doing” system. The second reason for our client’s success is the facilitator’s ability to engage participants and create a supportive, fun yet candid learning environment. The third and last reason is our client’s commitment to a long term development effort, for change is not an overnight process. It takes time.

Step 1 (Core Program)

Prerequisite for Steps 2 & 3
supervisor business communication training and business communication skills for managers

Business Communication an Interpersonal Skills Management Learning System

Business Communication an Interpersonal Skills Management Learning System teaches powerful communication strategies that are used to approach, manage, and ultimately resolve day-to-day conflicts and “people issues”. The program is made up of three modules, each is a building block targeting specific communication and management skills. Training is conducted in cohorts of no more than 10 participants.

Step 2 (Follow-up)

Prerequisite; Step 1
effective communication skills course and leadership communication

Refresher Workshop

Graduates are invited back to the training room for a full review of the concepts, skills, approaches, and strategies imparted in the core program (step 1). The workshop consists of two – 3.5hr sessions with a maximum of 10 participants. The first session focuses on the review part of the effort while session 2 concentrates on activities that give graduates the opportunity to demonstrate the strategies learned and practiced in Step 1.

Step 3 (Optional)

Prerequisite; Step 1
performance management training and development

Performance Development a Leadership Approach to High Performance

Most organizations have at their disposal a variety of tools to measure performance levels, compare them to expected ones, and arrive at ways to achieve peak performance from their employees; all in an effort to improve and maintain organizational performance. This paper trail is indispensable and requires consistent application and monitoring in order to be effective and reach the intended objectives.

What Graduates Are Saying

(The following comments are taken from actual graduate evaluations)

Client List

Union Benefits – Waterloo Ontario
Oxford HR Group – Norwich Ontario
City of Cambridge – Cambridge Ontario
Erwin Hymer Group North America – Kitchener, Cambridge
Danby Appliances – Guelph Ontario, U.S. Facilities
Covenant House – Toronto
City of Waterloo – Waterloo Ontario
Golden Windows Limited – Kitchener Ontario
City of Ottawa – Long Term care Division Ottawa Ontario
SKD Automotive – Milton Ontario
Colonial Cookies – Kitchener Ontario
HPS – Guelph, Walkerton Ontario, U.S Facilities
The Easter Seal Society of Ontario – Toronto, Barrie, Kingston
Dimplex North America – Cambridge Ontario
AGS Automotive – Cambridge, Oakville, Oshawa facilities
Brightside Financial – Waterloo Ontario
Faurecia Automotive Seating Canada Ltd – Concord Ontario
KEI – Kitchener Ontario
Krug Inc – Kitchener Ontario
Kerry Bioscience – Brantford Ontario
CompX – Waterloo Ontario
TG Minto Corporation – Minto Ontario
Boehmer Box Corporation – Kitchener Ontario
Bingemans – Kitchener Ontario
Budd Canada Inc – Kitchener Ontario, Detroit U.S.A. facility
CPA Ontario, Outreach Program – Toronto Ontario