Effective Communication in the Midst of Stress



Everyone depends on the services that utility companies provide which means communication among the company and its customers is critical. Families and businesses alike need the utilities for daily life and can get very agitated when service is disrupted.

As a result, there’s a high risk of conflict.

Workers in the field are direct links to the utility companies and are often the targets of angry customers. Mishandling the situation could cause tempers to flare, and this risk increases when:

  • services are being disconnected
  • service is interrupted by maintenance, construction, severe weather, or an accident
  • problems arise during weather extremes
  • a customer is confronted about delinquent payments
  • work interferes with a customers daily routine
  • repair or maintenance crews disrupt traffic

These are just a few of the many situations where utility workers face conflict and potential violence, which if not handled well, can drag down profits and increase the risk for violence.

Your employees must be able to communicate in a non-escalatory manner, effectively manage situations that get out of hand, and justify their actions – all with the goal of protecting the company’s reputation and bottom line.

That’s why we developed Verbal Defense & Influence training programs.

Verbal Defense & Influence has been street-tested by police for 28 years  to verbally prevent and de-escalate hostile interactions.

We can help develop procedures to standardize conflict response, ensure its defensibility, keep your employees safe, and prepare them to be true protectors of your reputation.


Our trainer gave our employee attendees many real-life skills and techniques with which they can defuse a situation or identify one as something they need to exit from.   Our trainer called days in advance to discuss the group, the facility, the AV Equipment.  He came to our facility to set up the day before the training and arrived long before the training started on our training day.  As a coordinator, that kind of professionalism matters a great deal to me.

–          Kevin Fowler, Dakota Electric, Farmington, MN


Utility Companies Partial Client List

Bell South Cellular Corp., GA

Dakota Electric, Farmington, MN

MediaOne Cable Company, CA

Department of Energy, Minerals & Natural Resources

Cambria Water District, CA



Confidence in Conflict Book