Vantage Solutions, 360 HR Solutions and Empathic Workplace

present a two day training course on empathic workplace investigations, from receiving the complaint to the closure of the investigation. This class will cover different interviewing techniques including, cognitive interviewing, non-confrontational accusations and cascade interviewing.

The Empathic Investigation

How to plan, execute, document, and finalize work related investigations.

April 24th and 25th, 2019
9:00AM to 4:30PM
Hilton Chicago
720 S. Michigan Ave, Chicago, IL

We will advance your understanding of the entire anatomy of a workplace investigation.

The material will assist those brand-new to workplace investigations as well as those more experienced in the investigative process. Our trainers have decades of experience in human resources, employment law and forensic interviewing.

This workshop begins from the point of receiving a complaint, how to work with initial letters, witnesses and all relevant documents. You will be guided as to the best practices for policies and procedures. We will expose you to vital techniques such as interview room layout, seating and even what should be allowed in the room or on the table.

Participants will then learn how to utilize our proven empathic techniques to establish credibility. Not all investigators are right for every complaint so matching is important. The ultimate path to a successful investigation is the application of empathy during the interview process. Empathic Workplace teaches you how story telling, posture, tone, words and demeanor each play a role.

We will demonstrate how to understand the science behind both verbal and nonverbal communications that occur in a workplace investigation.

We will showcase the importance of story telling. There will be hands on, interactive exercises for participates to experience the techniques in real time. We will provide examples of what questions to ask, or not to ask, in a variety of difficult conversations.

All participants will leave with a rich workbook that will inform and assist you, and your company, with future investigations. This detailed guide covers the workplace investigation process, best practices, review of the techniques demonstrated in the workshop and checklists for facilitating empathic investigations.

The Empathic Investigation means taking an authentic, mindful approach to accusations, interviews and investigations.

Do these questions sound familiar?

  • Can my complainant walk out the door?
  • Can the accused have a lawyer?
  • Can you say this is all confidential?
  • What if someone wants a union rep are they allowed to have one in the room?
  • What if they want to call their mom?
  • Can you say you can't leave until you talk to me?
  • What if someone wants to be separated from their accuser during the investigation, can you do that?
  • Can we legally place an employee on a leave of absence without pay pending the outcome of the investigation?
  • Do we have to interview every single person named?
  • Do we have to use the same interviewer throughout the entire investigation?

Investigation Topics Include

  • Policies and Best Practices
  • Relevant Documents
  • Credibility
  • Non Verbal Communication
  • Verbal Communication
  • Types of Questions
  • Setting the Stage
  • Taking Notes
  • Interviewing Techniques
  • Documenting the Investigation
  • Key Definitions and Phrases


Vanessa Smith

Employment Law Attorney & Trainer

Our experience includes large firm, small firm, in-house and extensive HR consulting

Our backgrounds, which include more than 100 years of experience and hundreds of investigations, have given us visibility to almost every type of investigation.

We are experts in training on and handling sensitive matters involving difficult and/or potentially inflammatory subject matters, reducing liability and organizational disruption.

As attorneys, we know both the law and the “nuts and bolts”
of investigations, which is critical in training, handling investigations with HR professionals and communicating well with outside counsel.

Liu Montsho

HR Consultant & Trainer

Liu Montsho is a seasoned HR professional and organizational development specialist with over 12 years of experience.

Her training specialties include leadership development, change management, instructional design and facilitation.  In her professional training career, she has been successful in applying blended instructional design techniques and methodologies using multiple virtual and face-to-face delivery methods including e-learning, classroom-based workshops, simulations, and interactive webinars.

Liu’s work history includes managing the training functions for firms with up to 24,000 employees in the public, private and non-profit sectors. She is currently a doctoral candidate in Organizational Leadership at Argosy University.

Angela Nino

Certified Forensic Interviewer & Trainer

Empathic Workplace presents workshops, lectures and demonstrations for business, associations and government agencies. The executives, managers and employees who attend gain knowledge of the foundational principles that build an empathic workplace.

We believe that the imperfect nature of communication that occurs during a workplace investigation can be balanced with empathy. The results of empathic communication reflect better trust, increased veracity and a positive organizational integrity.

We all know that failure to conduct a prompt, appropriate, well-documented and legally defensible investigation can result in crippling liability to an organization. What we have found makes the most profound impact is to perform investigations and interview in the most empathetic manner possible.