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NLP method for staff training criticised

PUBLISHED: 13:00 15 October 2008 | UPDATED: 21:31 05 July 2010

SUFFOLK County Council has been accused of spending £400,000 for staff to undergo "psycho-babble" training.

Andrew Cann, deputy leader of the Liberal Democrats on Suffolk County Council, said the outlay on the leadership improvement programme course "beggars belief".

SUFFOLK County Council has been accused of spending £400,000 for staff to undergo "psycho-babble" training.

Andrew Cann, deputy leader of the Liberal Democrats on Suffolk County Council, said the outlay on the leadership improvement programme course "beggars belief".

About 400 staff will be taught about leadership, personal resilience and change management during the course in a bid to improve performance. It will include the use of neuro-linguistic programming (NLP) techniques, described as "communicational psychology" and practised by hypnotist Paul McKenna.

NLP is claimed to assist people in adopting a "successful mindset".

Mr Cann said: "I have no problem with staff having appropriate training to do their jobs. That's good. But I've seen no evidence that this massive psycho-babble training programme is required."

Julian Swainson, Labour group leader, said his party believed in training staff but would examine the training given to "ensure it is relevant and good value for money".

The county council has defended the £1,000-per-head programme, arguing it is a continuation of normal staff training with the cost being covered by the current budget pot.

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