Business Essentials

Learn to embrace change, be more resilient, manage stress and improve customer experience while earning your digital badge.

Learn to confidently face challenges and adapt successfully to changes at work with the Business Essentials Badge. You will gain insights and skills to help you embrace change during uncertain times; understand stress and the importance of resiliency; use a crisis to spark process improvements and innovation; navigate difficult conversations and different communication styles; and deliver outstanding customer/employee experiences to retain and grow business.

The Business Essentials Badge consists of six three-hour modules delivered remotely over two consecutive weeks with students working collaboratively as a cohort. Upon successful completion, you will be able to bolster your resume, LinkedIn profile, and social media with the digital badge you earned. Business-Essentials-Professional-Microcredential-Digital-Badge

Six, three-hour modules:

  • Embracing Change
  • Understand Stress and Resilience
  • Use Crisis to Spark Innovation and Growth
  • Customer Experience Part I
  • Customer Experience Part II
  • Navigate Difficult Conversations



  • Change Management
  • Stress Management
  • Resilient Mindset
  • Process Improvement
  • Customer Experience and Retention
  • Employee Experience


Students complete the program as a cohort from start-to-finish and must commit to the program dates as posted.

  • Who should take this program: Employees from all levels and industries including retail, hospitality, automotive, manufacturing, customer service and more.
  • Pre-requisite: None
  • Modules to complete: Six three-hour modules
  • Number of hours: Three hours per module x 6 modules = 18 hours plus minimum 6 hours asynchronous homework
  • Delivery: Remote (for now)
  • Assessment: Participation; 80% attendance of each day
  • Achievement: The Business Essentials Badge upon successful completion of the six modules.

“The skills and tools I gained from the Business Essentials course are extremely helpful for strategic planning and process improvement and will help make our team more efficient.” - Anita Warriner, Executive Director, International Rural Exchange Canada


Funding Opportunities

Our non-credit programs may qualify for the Canada-Saskatchewan Job Grant, Canada Training Credit, Re-Skill Saskatchewan Training Subsidy (RSTS) and the URAA Alumni Professional Development Award.


Type Module Instructor Upcoming
Required Embracing Change
Penelope Popp Winter 2023
Required Use Crisis to Spark Improvement & Innovation
Dan Florizone Winter 2023
Required Understand Stress and Resilience Jacquie Messer-Lepage Winter 2023
Required Navigate Difficult Conversations
Jacquie Messer-Lepage Winter 2023
Required Customer Experience Part I
Shari Hildred Winter 2023
Required Customer Experience Part II Shari Hildred Winter 2023

Module Descriptions

Module 1 - Embracing Change


Change is constant.  The people side of change management is a critical component to successfully implementing a change management framework, whether it be small tweaks or large-scale transformational change. Change management process is a framework for creating new business practices and shifts in organizational structure or culture changes within an organization. 

Applying a framework and developing an implementation plan for change is beneficial when people require new roles, behaviours, skills, or outcomes.  By formally addressing change as its own unique entity, implementing diligent communication, and proactively seeking to understand people’s tolerance for the changes, you can establish credibility and embrace the discomfort of known and unknown changes.

In this module, participants will explore some models for assessing change tolerance and learn new skills to ensure stakeholders are more likely to buy into change and stay committed to its implementation.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand the patterns of change and why its necessary
  • Develop a change management plan
  • Explore best practices for change management
  • Practice applying a change model
Module 2 - Use Crisis to Spark Improvement and Innovation


 “To effect change, there must be a stimulation of a magnitude that means companies cannot do anything but make bold decisions to survive.” ABI's Chief Research Officer Stuart Carlaw – Mar. 25, 2020

With the global pandemic, businesses and organizations were forced to rethink how they respond to their customer’s needs and to provide their products and services in different ways.  As new delivery methods emerged out of necessity, many businesses began to challenge exiting processes and asked themselves: Are they the most efficient?  Do they add value for the customer, or do we do this just because we have “always done it this way”?

In this module, learn how new ways of thinking and doing often increase quality, reduce response times, add more service options, increase service times, and reduce costs.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand what is meant by process improvement and innovation
  • Learn the steps involved in process improvement
  • Identify signs of poor processes causing waste; not adding value to the customer
  • Understand successful improvement efforts and pitfalls
  • Practice some basic tools in process improvement

Module 3 - Understand Stress and Resilience


Do you find yourself struggling to understand the behaviour of others?  Is it “stressing you out”?  What is stress anyway? 

This module will provide participants with insights into the common causes of stress and why human beings respond as they do when things fail to go their way.  We will cover how personality influences stress levels and why different approaches to managing difficult situations can either amplify or reduce your feelings of stress. 

Within the module, you will also have an opportunity to explore the concept of resilience and some of the more common approaches to increasing your capacity to withstand the pressures of life. 

Learning Outcomes:

  • Identify and manage triggers of stress in yourself and others
  • Recognize how personality differences impact stress and methods of coping
  • Develop insight into personal stressors and resilience levels
  • Learn approaches to managing stress

Modules 4 - Navigate Difficult Conversations


Do you find some conversations too difficult to manage – or have you encountered situations where you wish you had handled a discussion more effectively? 

As we navigate new approaches to interacting, making certain our message is received as intended can be a significant challenge.  Moving from face to face conversations to virtual environments adds an additional layer of complexity that is often unfamiliar and can be riddled with potential pitfalls.

This module will provide you with an opportunity to explore different approaches to communication and to uncover personal triggers within difficult conversations.  You will learn about the importance of flexibility in approach, and why being curious can help move a conversation past disagreement.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Identify personal triggers in difficult conversations
  • Assessing your communication style(s)
  • Identify best practices for sharing perspectives
  • Build new skills, gain knowledge and learn tools to support effective communication

Module 5 & 6 - Customer Experience Part I & II


Your customer experience is always on center stage and customer retention is crucial to the long-term sustainability of your business. To keep customers coming back and feeling that they are spending in a safe and trusted environment, it is critical to examine the elements of customer retention, as well as the relationship between customer and employee experience.

In this two-part module, participants will explore customer retention concepts, important aspects to the employee experience and how employee experience relates to customer retention. You will also learn to use data to better understand retention.

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand customer retention concepts
  • Calculate your customer retention rate
  • Explore how customer experience and customer retention impacts your bottom line
  • Study the employee experience
  • Understand customer retention strategies and relationship to elevating the employee experience

The Details: What you need to know

  • Attedance Requirements
  • Completion Letters
  • Completion Policy - Professional Certificates and Microcredentials
  • Professional Certificate Requests
  • Withdrawal

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You can use the Filters on the Program Search page to browse all Centre for Continuing Education programs or Career Development courses.

Filter Type Filter Description
Location Centre for Continuing Education All programs offered through the Centre for Continuing Education
Program Category Badge: Business Essentials All courses within the Business Essentials Badge program
Department Career and Professional Development All courses and certificates offered by Career Development at the Centre for Continuing Education

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