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Client Customization

Situation Management Systems, Inc. customizes influence and negotiation programs for specific functions or to be a part of a larger event.


There are three levels of customization:

Level 1: Client Customizes

Short vignettes are used as skill drills which can be customized for a particular job. For example, a large investment company wanted to customize these skill drills as part of the negotiation program. The client did most of the customization using the generic skill drills as a start, and there was no charge.



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Level 2: SMS Customizes

Short vignettes and role plays are customized by SMS, Inc. Professionals from SMS, Inc. interview the target audience of the program and do the majority of the writing. Sometimes the skill drills are customized and sometimes role plays are also developed. This could take between 1 to 5 days of the SMS professionals' time. A large pharmaceutical call center wanted the vignettes customized for the original program and also for a follow-up program a year later. The follow-up program customization was completed at no cost as the original interviews provided enough data.



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Level 3: Client and SMS, Inc. Custom-Designed Program

A large oil company requested a custom-designed program to work with senior people who were responsible for managing partner relationships. An SMS professional teamed up with an oil company professional to custom design an influence process, assess what makes a great partner relationship, and to create a case study that is utilized on all 5 days of the program. The program combined oil field assessment tools with influencing tools. Feedback from the company was that this program gave them a competitive edge because it is a combination of hard and soft skills. Depending upon the complexity of the program this can take up to 20 days time.



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Some General Examples of Client Customization

Industry-specific Examples

These are just a few examples of how SMS has applied its expertise to solve industry-specific business problems. These are just a sampling of industries that SMS has worked with over the last 20 years. If you don't see your industry here, check back. We are adding them as they become available.


Our Experience in the:
  • Consumer Products Industry
  • Financial Services Industry
  • Information Technology
  • Insurance Industry
  • Oil and Gas Industry
  • Pharmaceutical Industry
  • Telecommunications Industry
  • Utilities Industry

For further information on how we can help your organization, please contact us.

Situation Management Systems provides on-site programs, consulting services, public workshops, and trainer certification options. Founded in 1976, we currently work with clients in 40 countries and in 15 languages.

Consumer Products Industry

Consumer products companies have come under tremendous pressure from intense competition and consolidation within the industry. Consumers have forsaken brand loyalty for lower prices, and the buying public has become more diverse ethnically and economically. Companies that are able to respond quickly with better value products and competitive prices will succeed in the marketplace. SMS has worked with many consumer products companies to provide the skills that managers and professionals need to excel in this dynamic environment.


Examples of work we have done:
  • Trained a national sales force to respond to price pressure from generic brands by negotiating higher volume, lower price agreements with key customers while protecting margins.
  • Delivered a core leadership course worldwide for managers of a consumer products conglomerate.
  • Customized programs in influence skills and negotiation strategy to help two major food services companies establish productive relationships with their franchisees.
  • Delivered Spanish language programs in influence skills for the Central American managers of a processed foods company.
  • Implemented custom designed negotiation training for the advertising department of a major consumer products firm which helped the firm secure better agreements with external advertising agencies and publishing firms.

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Financial Services Industry

Today’s financial services professionals face a variety of pressures. Heated competition, mergers, restructuring, and diminished resources are just a few of the elements creating big challenges inside financial institutions. What skills do financial services professionals need to be effective in this environment? The ability to sell and negotiate is crucial if an institution is to remain both profitable and competitive. Also important is the ability to promote and implement new systems and processes while managing the inevitable resistance to change. And as resources become more scarce, banking professionals must learn to influence and negotiate with others to get what they want. SMS has worked with dozens of financial institutions to provide the skills that managers and professionals need to excel, not just survive, in their rapidly changing roles.


Examples of work we have done:
  • We worked with the commercial banking relationship managers in one of North America’s largest financial institutions to develop the selling skills to grow new business opportunities while strengthening existing relationships.
  • We worked with the senior management in the retail banking division of a large eastern bank to develop the interpersonal skills needed to provide leadership and motivation in a competitive environment.
  • We trained the staff members in the audit division of a New York financial institution to develop the skills needed to resolve conflicts and work collaboratively with their client organizations.
  • One of the largest banking organizations in the U.S. has turned to us to train management associates in the influence skills needed for future career development and to enhance their success in current rotational assignments.

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Information Technology

Today’s I.T. professionals are partners, consultants, and strategists—not just technologists. They must provide business solutions as well as technical solutions, feel as comfortable with people as they do with technology, and be as adept at consulting as they are at computing. Downsizing of resources and the constant introduction of new systems call for I.T. professionals with a wider set of skills, broader responsibilities, and increased flexibility. What skills do I.T. professionals need to be effective? As resources diminish while the demand for information increases, I.T. professionals constantly have to influence and negotiate with others. Listening to and identifying needs is key to client satisfaction. Developing a vision based on shared goals is vital to gaining commitment. Managing expectations, promoting ideas, and negotiating high-quality agreements when conflicting interests prevail are all emerging as key I.T. skills. SMS provides the skills I.T. professionals need to excel, not just survive, in their rapidly changing roles. Hundreds of I.T. professionals have attended our programs in influence, consulting, negotiation, innovation, and project management over the past few years.


Examples of work we have done:
  • Our POSITIVE POWER AND INFLUENCE® Program has helped I.T. professionals in a major snack foods company implement a partnership approach with internal clients.
  • A large mid-western insurance company uses our Positive Negotiation Program to teach its I.T. staff how to resolve conflicts over resources and priorities and how to reach quality agreements with internal stakeholders.
  • Our POSITIVE POWER AND INFLUENCE® Program is a core communications course for the I.T. professionals in one of North America’s largest banking organizations.
  • We developed a customized influence program for a large I.T. consulting firm to help its consultants build stronger client relationships.

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Insurance Industry

The insurance industry has experienced significant change over the past ten years, which has made the pressure to perform greater than ever. Government regulations, increased competition, and more demanding consumers are just some of the pressures facing the modern insurance firm. In addition, companies have instituted a variety of reengineering and downsizing initiatives, creating increased internal conflicts as managers compete for limited resources. SMS has worked with dozens of insurance organizations to provide the skills that individuals need to excel, not just survive, in this difficult environment.


Examples of work we have done:
  • Trained the information systems staff of a large Midwestern insurance company to reduce conflict and reach quality agreements with internal stakeholders through the use of negotiation skills.
  • Developed a cadre of sales trainers to deliver a customized sales negotiation program to the entire field sales force selling managed healthcare services.
  • Offer our influence and negotiation skills programs as part of an ongoing leadership development curriculum of a major insurance firm whose managers come from property and casualty, healthcare, international, and staff divisions.
  • Trained a company’s legal auditing staff, comprised of auditors and attorneys, to adopt a negotiation framework to help them reduce legal expenses and obtain additional value from law firms with whom they work.

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Oil and Gas Industry

The oil and gas industry has experienced significant change over the past ten years. These changes include increased regulatory scrutiny, wide swings in the price of crude oil, more complex minerals ownership arrangements, increased competition, slimmer profit margins, rapid development of new exploration technologies, and the need to negotiate more complex agreements on sharing of technology and production efforts. In addition, companies have instituted a variety of quality, reengineering, and downsizing initiatives, making the pressure to perform greater than ever. SMS has worked with dozens of oil and gas companies to provide the skills that managers and professionals need to excel, not just survive, in this difficult environment.


Examples of work we have done:
  • We work with several companies to improve the negotiation skills of those individuals involved in critical right of way/land acquisition/land development transactions.
  • We have customized influence and negotiation skills programs to help business managers work more effectively with distributors and independent station operators, building skills in reaching win-win agreements and overcoming field resistance to marketing initiatives driven by the organization.
  • We work with the middle management and engineering staffs of one of the world’s largest oil companies to enhance their skills at promoting and implementing new systems and processes while managing the inevitable resistance to change.

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Pharmaceutical Industry

Over the past decade, pharmaceutical companies have faced an ever-changing, competitive business environment. Increasing demand for innovation, pressure to bring products to the marketplace at a faster pace, and the intricacies of formulating new agreements within managed care environments have required that organizations adapt and develop new approaches. Companies have responded by creating more team-based organizations, developing strategic alignments, executing global strategies, and demanding that people work together and collaborate in new and different ways. SMS has worked with dozens of pharmaceutical companies to provide the skills that managers and professionals need to excel in this dynamic environment.


Examples of work we have done:
  • Designed and delivered advanced negotiation training for area business managers and account management teams who handle national and managed care accounts to foster better customer agreements and direct internal resources to support those agreements.
  • Provided customized training domestically and internationally to Clinical Research Associates to enhance their influence effectiveness when dealing with home office personnel and with clinical field staff conducting drug trials.
  • Worked with product managers to help them develop and implement strategies to gain support for their ideas for new products and services.
  • Tailored negotiation workshops in Spanish and Portuguese for Key Account Managers throughout Latin America as part of a global sales strategy initiative.
  • Worked with a market analytic group and various regulatory groups to develop and enhance their influence and negotiation capabilities.
  • Implemented influence and negotiation skills training for the Pharmaceuticals, R&D, Clinical Laboratories, and Consumer Products divisions as part of a shared services curriculum to enhance quality and ensure a consistent approach while reducing expenses.
  • Trained regional Medical and Oncology Associates in influence skills to support their interactions with physicians, hospitals, and sales representatives.

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Telecommunications Industry

A recent survey concluded that the greatest challenges facing the telecommunications industry include increased competition, global markets, the rapid development of new technologies, the increasing demands and expectations of customers, and workers whose leadership abilities do not match their technical competence. SMS has worked with many telecommunications companies to provide the skills that managers and professionals need to excel in this dynamic environment.


Examples of work we have done:
  • Worked with a manufacturer of transmission and networking systems to help their professional staff develop the influence skills needed to manage projects and build interdepartmental relationships.
  • Served as the outsourcing firm responsible for design, delivery, site selection and participant registration for a course to develop the behavioral skills necessary to support a large scale cultural change.
  • Following a merger, conducted influence skills training to help employees be more effective with customers and co-workers while performing new tasks.
  • Adapted our negotiation skills program to train a highly experienced sales force to reach more profitable agreements on its satellite tracking systems.
  • Used our influence skills program to help one of the larger regional telephone companies transition from a regulated to an entrepreneurial culture.

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Utilities Industry

Utilities are facing enormous changes as the realities of deregulation set in. Low cost competition puts pressure on high cost plants. Markets are becoming national and even global. Provider functions are being unbundled, and mergers and alliances often become necessary for survival. New power technologies and expanded services must coexist with rate reductions, and the operative philosophy is “do more with less”. SMS has worked with many utilities to provide the skills that managers and professionals need to excel in this challenging environment.


Examples of work we have done:
  • Deliver a core leadership program on building business relationships for all the subsidiaries of an electrical power holding company.
  • Conduct influence skills training for two major utilities to enable managers to adapt to industry changes and provide leadership for the upcoming challenges.
  • Train managers of a large southwestern utility to negotiate better agreements with both internal and external constituents.
  • Conduct performance improvement workshops for a west coast utility to train the sales organization to think and act strategically when developing new and existing customers and markets.

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Some of Our Clients

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Contact Us
  • Address: 98 Spit Brook Road, Suite 201,
    Nashua, NH 03062
  • Phone: (603) 897-1200
  • Email: info@smsinc.com
  • Monday - Friday: 8:00 am - 5:00 pm
    Saturday - Sunday: Closed
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