Tel: 0844 394 8877

Boulden Management Consultants

Remote-Based Training

Resisting Unreasonable Requests

handling a difficult meeting

How to push back against unfair requests

Remote Course

Course Brochure Download
Brochure for Resisting Unreasonable Requests
  • Create a ‘strategy’ for handling unreasonable requests
  • Understand the significance of the ‘internal alignment’
  • Master the art of saying ‘no’


This fast paced, remote training programme, is designed to give participants a grasp of the skills needed to resist unfair, or unreasonable, requests from peers, customers and managers.

The training will help participants to adopt a resilient mental outlook when facing pressure to comply with unfair requests, and also covers ways to plan how to resist unfair pressure. The workshop also discusses how to analyse the issues thoroughly and say ‘no’ assertively, all in the context of working in a virtual world.

The training consists of:

  1. An E-learning Module that people do as pre-work. (This is in the form of a pdf file that takes around 20-30 minutes to complete.)
  2. A four-hour-long, live Zoom Workshop, (with a 30-minute break halfway through) where we briefly review the theory covered in the pre-work and then carry out a series of role plays and case studies.

Learning objectives

By attending this highly interactive course you will:

  • Discover the key aspects of being psychologically ready to resist unfair pressure
  • Acquire insights into the planning process
  • Gain an understanding of the other party’s motivations
  • Learn how to counter unreasonable requests
  • Grasp methods for saying ‘no’, diplomatically

Who should attend?

This course is ideal for anyone who wants to have a refresher or ‘master class’ on resisting unreasonable demands. It is also relevant for all those new to this topic, who want to grasp the essential elements of pushing back against unfair requests.

Adopting an Assertive Mindset

Being mentally or psychologically ‘ready’ to push back against unfair demands involves considering four key factors.

  • Understanding the consequences of not pushing back
  • Understanding your assertive ‘rights’
  • The need for preparation
  • Understanding BATNA’s

Exercise: developing BATNA’s

Scripting and Strategic Alignment

Understanding how to prepare to push back on a request.

  • The power of scripting
  • Strategic Alignment
  • Dealing with negative behaviour patterns

Exercise: assessing your Strategic Alignment

Understanding the issues

A key element of ‘pushing back’ is to make sure you show that you’ve fully understood the customer’s request.

  • Logic Levels Questions
  • Logic Levels Diagrams
  • Moving in 3 directions
  • Logical Levels Example
  • Four possible responses

Exercise: assessing a request using Logic Levels

Eight techniques for saying ‘no’ elegantly

Techniques for pushing back against unfair pressure include:

  1. Blunt No
  2. Pre-framing
  3. Three-Step Assertive Technique
  4. Broken Record Technique
  5. Negative Consequences
  6. The Progressive No
  7. Metaphor and Analogy
  8. Counter Examples

Exercise: practise at using the techniques



This programme is delivered in a remote format.

Where appropriate, we conduct interviews and facilitate focus groups to gather information with which to write bespoke case studies that precisely reflect the culture and work environment of the participants.


Feedback is based upon peer reviews using Boulden Assessment Checklists. Completing the Boulden Assessment Checklists is not only valuable to the people involved in a given case study, it also helps those completing them to gain an in-depth understanding of skills used by excellent Remote Managers.

Follow up Coaching Support (Practise makes perfect)

The workshop can be followed by a 3/4-month-long group coaching activity (using the Action Learning Philosophy). This involves delegates trying out the skills from the workshop in real life situations and getting support and guidance from their peers and the consultant as they do so. If this option is selected there is a Closure Workshop at the end of the coaching phase where delegates present how they have applied the techniques learned on the course into their daily work routine (using the Most Significant Change methodology).

Remote Training

All of our workshops can be delivered as Remote Training via e-learning modules plus Zoom based virtual workshops. Please see our Virtual Training page for more information.


Further information on this course is available by contacting
Boulden Management Consultants:
via our Contact form
Tel: 0844 394 8877