The Influential Communicator Business Certificate

Kelley School of Business

How long?

  • 5 days
  • in person

Kelley School of Business


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About the course

Effective communication is an essential skill in business, and this program will sharpen yours. Practice and feedback from experts will make you an impactful communicator.

The program includes persuasion, credibility, executive presence, and components of influential presentations. You will learn how to craft a presentation, write for results, facilitate a meeting, and speak to the point. Daily sessions of filming, coaching, and action planning with feedback from faculty experts will help you improve your skills while testing them out in real-world scenarios.

If you are ready to challenge yourself and take your communication skills to the next level, this executive certificate program is the one for you.

Key Takeaways

This certificate is intended for people who interact daily with others in writing or face-to-face encounters. It will benefit those who are highly competent in functional and technical skills and are at a point in their careers where they need to communicate and influence regularly. The skills and confidence gained will help you build your brand and professional presence.

People who earn the certificate will be able to:

  • Tailor your message to your unique audience
  • Speak with conviction and clarity
  • Design written and spoken messages that get attention and results
  • Facilitate a discussion in a group while getting consensus
  • Build trust in important relationships
  • Exude verbal credibility
  • Enhance your LinkedIn visibility
  • Design your communication action plan that flexes your individual style


The program, which includes four individual coaching sessions for each student, is taught by four award-winning faculty members from the Kelley School of Business who are experts in business communications. To successfully complete the program, you will prepare five action plans and two written drafts as well as undergo a communication style assessment and facilitate a meeting.

Day 1: Communicating to Enhance Your Credibility

When trust is present in a relationship, work is faster, more efficient, less costly, and more rewarding. How do you earn the trust of those around you? Today you will:

  • focus on ways to build your trust quotient with your boss, colleagues, and team members.
  • identify your own verbal and nonverbal credibility busters and boosters.
  • practice exuding credibility cues that people use to judge your trustworthiness.
  • learn the Big Five trust factors and ways to build your five.
  • explore the common writing errors that detract from or build perceptions of trust.
  • produce two credibility-building sample documents (an email and a LinkedIn update).

Day 2: Communicating to Influence

In the morning, you'll have your first coaching experience of the week when communication experts from the Kelley School of Business faculty give you individual feedback on the documents you created during Day 1. You also will:

  • practice coaching (another essential communication skill) as you provide feedback to your teammates.
  • learn how to communicate influentially using the three pillars of influential communication.
  • practice organizing your thoughts (even on-the-fly) to create clear, convincing messages.
  • learn to use story and emotional appeal to capture the hearts of your listeners.
  • record a brief presentation by day’s end.

Day 3: Communicating in Difficult Situations

Your morning begins with your second coaching experience and ends with a detailed plan of exercises and experiences that will help you continue to improve your speaking skills. In the afternoon, you will learn how to handle contentious meetings, hostile questions, and conflict, and finish “in the hot seat" as you practice facilitating a meeting-gone-wrong.

Day 4: Communicating Authentically and Flexibly

Begin day 4 with your third coaching session of the week. You also will:

  • review highlights (and lowlights) of the hot-seat meeting facilitation.
  • create an action plan that keeps you on track with your goals moving forward.
  • receive your Communication Style Assessment (Keirsey Assessment) and explore your natural communication preferences and strengths.
  • learn how and when to flex your communication style to align, inspire, and motivate others.
  • create a communication flex chart that identifies several key relationships in your professional life and ways you can best communicate with those people.

Day 5: Communicating for Success

Your final coaching session will explore your communication preferences to consider how to best leverage your unique communication strengths. Wrap up with a final action plan that will send you back into the workplace with concrete, actionable steps for transferring your learning to your life.


Brenda Bailey-Hughes

Brenda Bailey-Hughes, MA, is an award-winning faculty member at the Kelley School of Business. She’s been teaching business communication and leadership courses since 2001 when she joined the Kelley School. Brenda teaches in the top-ranked undergraduate program, the Kelley Direct graduate program...

Andrew Bunger

Andrew Bunger, JD, is a lecturer in business communications at the Kelley School of Business. He joined the Kelley faculty in 2015 and has taught courses on a wide range of topics including management, business writing, business presentations and professional development. Outside of the classroom...

Anna Deeds

I am a 2009 graduate from Bellarmine University with a B.A. in Communication, and a 2011 graduate from Indiana University with a M.S. in Higher Education & Student Affairs (HESA). I am currently faculty at the Kelley School of Business in the Business Communication department, teaching a bu...

Tatiana Kolovou

Negotiation and Conflict Management Certificate Program. Co-developer of a seven module online executive education product Areas of Expertise Cross Cultural Communication, Business Presentations, Strategic Communication, Customer Service in Higher Education. Academic Degrees Master''s of Busines...

The Influential Communicator Business Certificate at Kelley School of Business

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