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Investigation Skills Training Course - One Day

Learn practical tools that you can use in real-life situations. Investigation Skills Training
  • Hold an investigative interview that gets to the truth
  • Distinguish facts from opinions
  • Distinguish “answers to questions”, from “responses to questions”
  • Distinguish between “admissible” and “inadmissible” statements
  • Ask the right questions in the right way
  • Handle the evasive and difficult person
  • Take accurate written notes, as you go
Learn in a friendly and relaxed atmosphere with people who are facing similar situations as you.

Investigation Skills Training - One Day Course

About this Investigation Skills Training Course

There are occasions when managers have to investigate allegations of bad-practice. These allegations may represent a breach of the law, or it may be a breach of company policy. Either way, the manager has to interview the “witnesses” and they have to interview “the accused”.

This places the manager in a difficult position because the manager has neither experience nor knowledge of exactly how to conduct an investigative interview where the person being interviewed may be evasive, angry, lying, or the victim of an injustice.

This course is intended to help.

Your training aims are:
To develop the leader-managers’ ability to investigate possible instances of:

  1. Misconduct
  2. Disciplinary issues
  3. Grievance issues
  4. Poor performance issues

Why the course is needed

You want to give some practical training to members of staff who need to investigate possible instances of poor performance or poor conduct.

In situations where your investigation needs to get at the truth, you want a level of consistency so that all your managers are operating according to proper principles.

You want the training so your people can work to a definite standard; as opposed to everyone doing their “own thing”.

In addition, some of your managers have never had any formal training in the art of asking probing questions, so you need something that will help them in their role as an investigator.

Course content was comprehensive, interactive, stimulating with individual and group learning. The trainer’s presentation was clear, well organised, well communicated, instructive, relevant and useful.

Customer Reviews

Investigation Skills Training - One Day Course Overview

Day One - Morning

  • Normal interview vs. investigative interview
  • Answers v responses
  • Lying is risky
  • Evasion is more common
  • Factual language
  • Hearsay evidence
  • Best evidence rule
  • General v specific statements
  • Factual language v opinionated
  • 6 steps for gathering information

Day One - Afternoon

  • Sentence analysis
  • Asking the right questions
  • Investigation 2: Suspected person interview
  • Body language
  • Incongruent communications
  • Taking good written notes
  • Investigation interview 2 Suspected person
  • Notes and final action plans

Available Dates and Locations

Your business venue
Dates to suit you

In-House Course Available Call us on +44 (0)20 3856 3037 to discuss your requirements or Read More >

Please note all our training courses include optional three months FREE telephone coaching to answer any on-going questions.

Course Timings: Start 09:00 - Finish 16:30. Lunch at 13:00, Tea Breaks at 11:00 and 15:00.
6 trainer-led hours, additional 2-3 via post-course portal independent learning

Our Open Training Courses run in: London, Manchester, Birmingham, Bristol, Maidstone, Scotland, Kent, Reading, Dublin, Ireland, Leeds, Gloucestershire.
In-house courses can be run in the UK or worldwide to suit you.

Course content was comprehensive, interactive, stimulating with individual and group learning. The trainer’s presentation was clear, well organised, well communicated, instructive, relevant and useful.

Customer Reviews

Investigation Skills Training Course Content

Investigation Skills Training - Day One - AM

Investigation techniques are important skills for investigations officers.

  1. Formal complaints
  2. Possible bullying
  3. Harassment
  4. Disciplinary issues
  5. Grievance issues
  6. Misconduct

Investigative questioning is a specialised form of communication

Investigative questioning is a form of conversation that does not follow the normal social conventions, but must still be done with a high degree of professionalism and respect whilst being effective as a tool to get to the truth.

To conduct a professional, respectful and effective interview, this Investigation skills training is designed to help your people make the switch in conversational technique.

“The switch” includes learning how to:

  1. Get to the truth of the matter
  2. Uncover any outright lies - by identifying contradictions and errors in the others account
  3. Uncover evasion. Evasion is the art of NOT telling the whole truth, (i.e. missing important bits out); in order to distort the truth without actually lying
  4. Distinguish error from malice or laziness
  5. Take proper “contemporaneous written notes” so that you can use the information gleaned during the interview

The differences between normal conversation and an investigation interview.

Investigation interview is a special context that requires that you make a conscious shift in your normal conversational method.

Distinguish between answers and responses to your questions

  1. Some people RESPOND to questions but don't answer them
  2. The questioner must notice when his-her question has not been answered

Distinguish between

  1. First hand evidence- admissible
  2. Second hand evidence- hearsay evidence - non admissible

I was very pleased with the course content and learned a lot of new things, some of which I can also use in my personal life, in addition to professional. Trainer's presentation was varied in terms of practical and theory. Good balance, not too much role play, which some courses end up doing.

Customer Reviews

Investigation Skills Training - Day One - PM

Best Evidence Rule

The best evidence rule is a legal principle that holds an original document is superior evidence than any copy. The rule specifies that a copy cannot be used if the original exists.

The implication is to: Keep all your original documents and evidence safe.

Major Communication Skill 1: Facts v Opinions

You need to distinguish between two kinds of statement:
Objective facts and Subjective opinions:

  • Objective facts - the evidence provided by the five senses
  • Subjective opinions - personal interpretation of facts

Major Communication Skill 2: Specific and Vague

You need to distinguish between two kinds of statement:
Specific and vague.

  • Specific statements denote only one possible interpretation
  • Vague statements denote multiple possible interpretations

Your skill as an investigator is to take their vague statements and by questioning, reduce it down to a specific statement

Identifying four types of response to a question:

  1. Truth – the statement corresponds to the facts and is self-consistent
  2. Error – The statement is NOT TRUE but is believed to be true by the speaker. The speaker is in error
  3. Lie – The statement is NOT TRUE and the speaker knows that it is not true. It is a lie
  4. Evasion – The statement does not answer the original question. The speaker is not actually lying but is evading the truth by not giving full answers. He -she keeps “ducking the question”

Warning: Evasions are more common than lies. Because lies contradict reality, they are more dangerous to the speaker. If a person has done something wrong, he-she will be more likely to EVADE the question rather than LIE, because NOT answering a question is safer than lying.

Ways people use to EVADE questions:

  • Forcibly challenge the questioner. (The Donald Trump Technique)
  • Change the subject. (The Tony Blair technique)
  • Give the answer to a different question
  • Have an emotional outburst, (usually an outburst of anger or tears)

Probing questions techniques

  1. Key questioning skills
    How to ask probing questions
  2. Getting to the facts, not opinions or guesses
    Separate facts from opinions, interpretations and guesswork
  3. Notice when a person says one thing, then later contradicts the statement
    Contradictions should be noted and investigated
  4. Gaps in the narrative
    Find out what bits they have failed to mention
  5. Take things in chronological order (time order)
    Structure their statements into a time-sequenced order

Role play number 1

Taking the witness statement
Take the initial complaint with the right amount of detail.

Separating facts from opinions.
Feedback on your performance, in order that you learn more, by analysing any errors or omissions.

Methods of recording interviews

Taking contemporaneous notes
Taking hand written notes: Accurate, complete and legible

The art of asking questions and taking notes at the same time
The rules on recording.

Role play number 2

Questioning the person being accused of doing something wrong
Practice questioning the trainer who will try to evade your questions.

Feedback on your performance, in order that you learn more, by analysing any errors or omissions.

How to set up the room

  • Where to sit – The relative positions of the interviewer to the interviewee makes a difference to the outcome. You should avoid confrontational positioning.
  • Prepare the environment – Environmental factors such as noise, interruptions, lighting, furniture, all make a difference to the outcome of an interview.

Body language and voice tones

  • Yours – There are some things you should not do with your body language
  • Theirs – There are some things you should look out for, in their body language

Body language

  1. Posture
  2. Eye contact
  3. Hand Gestures
  4. Facial Expression
  5. Congruent and incongruent communications

Role play number 3

Another chance to interview another person who is accused of bad behaviour

Practice questioning the trainer who will try to evade your questions.

Feedback on your performance, in order that you learn more, by analysing any errors or omissions.

Summary, personal action planning and close

This investigation course was very informative. It has given me more tools to conduct an investigation. The presentation was well planned and completed at the right pace and timing.

Customer Reviews

The Course Training Method

The training method follows this general pattern - the training is very interactive and interesting:

  1. The trainer gives a clear explanation of the point in question with specific examples.
  2. Then, the delegates practice by doing an exercise with each other.
  3. The delegates practice by doing an exercise with the trainer.
  4. All points are supported with full written notes to take away.
  5. Delegates are asked to write down an associated action, for each point made.
    (At the end of the day, we have about twenty such actions, from which the delegates choose six which are the most personally meaningful).

Note: we do not believe in placing people in any situation of embarrassment by demanding that they 'perform' in front of the whole group. So you can relax: come on this course and be at ease; ready to learn new skills!

Express an Interest

If you feel you would like to attend but cannot yet commit to a secured booking, you can express your interest here.





In-House Training Course Pricing and Proposal

This course is also available from just £1,950 +VAT per day as a bespoke in-house group training course in the UK and worldwide.

It has been designed to provide a similar experience to our open courses, however we can tailor the content to fit your specific needs. In-House Group training costs from just £1,950 +VAT per day for up to 20 delegates (international training price varies). Plus, hotel accommodation for trainer if necessary. (Premier Inn type: not the Hilton!)

This price includes:

  • Quality training delivered by an experienced trainer
  • Full colour course handbook
  • Personal written action plans
  • Access to additional free training material after the course
  • Three months free telephone coaching

In-House Proposal Document

Download the in-house training proposal document

Contact Us Today

Please call us on +44 (0)20 3856 3037 to discuss your requirements for the in-house training course.

If you want to know more about any other Management Training Courses, or their suitability for you or a colleague, call us on +44 (0)20 3856 3037.

Email your Manager

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So, you may find it beneficial to give your manager this document, which will give all the information needed to make the right decision.

To do this, please enter the manager's email address below and.. take me to your leader!


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