Dealing with Difficult Situations in Theatre and Managing Conflict with the public


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This eLearning course will lift your level of competence and confidence in correctly managing conflict and dealing with unusual and/or difficult situation arising in our unique world of theatre. Never before have we needed these core skills so badly to help us overcome the challenges Covid-19 bring in its wake.

This eLearning module will take you approximately 60 – 90 minutes to complete. It contains seven sections and is self-paced, and you can pause it, review sections, and come back to it as you wish. The eLearning has different training paths within it so exercises and scenario activities are role specific and really relevant.

There is no assessment at the end but there are exercises throughout and an opportunity to make on-screen notes to record your thoughts to then download/print at the end to help consolidate your knowledge – and then discuss with your manager if you wish.

This course complements the Mental Wellbeing at Work eLearning training which is also available from us.

Who should do this eLearning?

It is ideal for Theatre Duty Managers, Supervisors, experienced Front of House, Bars and Box Office staff, Stage Door Keepers, Performance Security and Fire Officers and more senior personnel from Rear of House and other departments.

What will they learn?

The training considers how to deal effectively and appropriately not only with difficult patrons but also a wide range of other member of the public and visitors inside and around the theatre.

From people with mental health issues, intoxicated or obsessive fans to demanding creatives, hurried contractors, aggressive touts, or journalists. We will explore the need for flexibility and adaptability whilst keeping you safe from danger.

Course content

To provide you with the knowledge and an understanding of:

  • How to protect your organisations reputation by following procedures
  • Difficult behaviours – what’s “normal” for your theatre?
  • How to assess risk when stepping in
  • The legal position on personal safety whist handling difficult situations
  • The signs of and triggers to anger
  • When and how to leave an escalating situation
  • Different ways to de-escalate conflict
  • A structured approach to problem solving
  • How to develop your emotional resilience
  • You will also look at some scenarios relevant to your job role on handling difficult situation in theatre including Covid-19 related problems