Conflict has a huge impact on the emotional health of any workplace and it’s not just those directly involved. Colleagues, teams and stakeholders can feel the impact when there are differences of opinion. Conflict is by its very nature destructive and yet there’s something else. It can also be an opportunity. Mediating long held disputes often stimulates huge change. Relationships are renegotiated, the deeper understanding drives connection and a new respect emerges based on empathy.
The confidentiality and impartiality that I bring as an external mediator is liberating for those in conflict. During a structured day I speak with each party individually before bringing them together to discuss the issues. It can be a pretty robust conversation so we agree some rules to ensure a fair and objective approach. I’m experienced at the cut and thrust of these discussions and will make sure that each party understands the others point of view – and the emotions involved. You’d be surprised how often conflict is resolved once both sides are heard fully and clearly.
I hold the National Certificate in Workplace Mediation and as such I generally work on 2 person disputes but many of the techniques transfer very happily in to group situations – helping to draw out internal team conflicts and agree new ways of working.