University of Wisconsin–Madison

Having Difficult Workplace Conversations

Difficult conversations with customers, with staff or with supervisors are usually not comfortable, but steps can be taken to ensure a positive end result. This course will cover tools and best practices to ensure that even the most challenging conversations will result in a happier workplace.

At a glance

Dates: Jun 22 – Jul 19, 2020

Cost: $150 (10% discount when you register 2 weeks in advance!)

CE Credit: 1.4 CEUs/14 LEUs

Program: #303721

Questions? Contact Meredith Lowe or Anna Palmer

Register online

Register by phone: Pyle Center, (608) 262-2451

Register by mail: Print a Registration Form

Payment and Cancellation Policy

Login information will be emailed to you a few days before the course begins

Course details

Course goals

  • To determine when it’s time to have a difficult conversation
  • To provide tools on how to start difficult conversations
  • To determine how to stay calm
  • To understand how to approach people resistant to talking
  • To approach instances of unacceptable work behavior
  • To develop effective follow-up after difficult conversations


Pass/Fail grade is based on completing all weekly lessons, discussions, and assignments.


Jamie Matczak is the education consultant at Wisconsin Valley Library Service in Wausau, WI. Previously the associate director/continuing education coordinator for the Nicolet Federated Library System in Green Bay, she has taught Business Communication at Lakeland College, has a BA in Advertising from UW-Eau Claire, and an MS in Applied Leadership for Teaching and Learning from UW-Green Bay. Jamie has presented on marketing, social media and communication at state-wide and national conferences.