People problems at work?

If people problems are hurting your business then call me today on phone 03 545 2567 for a complimentary confidential chat on how I can help you. I’m a coach, trainer, facilitator and mentor specialising in conflict resolution between people and teams in organisations. I create successful organisations by showing people how to work through differences and resolve their conflict and communication breakdowns.

How I work: Facilitating communication and resolution between two or more people

I work in a non-legal, non-formal framework providing resolution of issues, the development of trust, and the repair of working relationships.  I resolve interpersonal difficulties where people are committed to developing something new in their relationship and being open to achieving a new resolution.

I nip issues in the bud prior to any formal complaints or formal disciplinary procedures and where there is no third party involvement.

In potential ‘bullying’ situations, as part of the resolution I give coaching to help the complainant take the first step to raise the concern directly with the alleged bully (Self Help option).

My normal process starts with 1-2 individual coaching sessions for each party where specific goals are set up and the planning process begins for raising concerns.  This  followed by 6 hours (4 sessions of 1.5 hours, or 2 sessions of 3 hours) professional development sessions covering the tools and methodology of having a courageous constructive collegial conversation.

In these sessions issues are raised with each other using my step-by-step courageous conversations method ©.  I take this approach because in all cases I have worked with, the parties in a communication breakdown or conflict situation need skills and tools and careful planning to successfully raise and resolve issues in emotionally charged situations.  In most cases the professional development coaching sessions are followed up with further one-to-one sessions to ensure the relationship is still on track.

To start to process, you the client, seeks agreement in principle from the parties that they are willing to be part of a resolution process. To be successful the parties must have a desire to improve working relationship, have some goodwill towards the other(s), and has everyone’s interests at heart including the organisational interests.

The resolution process is informal (not part of a formal procedure) and has the intention of generating trust and goodwill and mutually agreed solutions. Therefore, support people are not to be invited unless there are exceptional circumstances eg. language or cultural barriers, and their presence is agreed with me, and the other party, in advance.

In working or meeting with me you agree to my Terms of Trade

My work in conflict resolution takes a variety of forms:  #Forms-of-conflict-resolution


Stage 1:  Planning and Preparation Meet with those who have an overview. 

This is often the person who is responsible for the outcome or is the person responsible for paying my fee (the client).

We will discuss the whole history of the situation, what has been done, and then discuss possible next steps, including what outcomes are wanted from the resolution process, going forward, with the time frame.  We identify the key players for me to interview and move to stage 2.

Stage 2:  Planning and Preparation – Meet with each of the parties individually and any other key players.

It will be helpful to think about these questions prior to our meeting:  

  • How much trust, goodwill you have towards the other person?
  • How willing you are to resolve any issues between you that has undermined good working relationships and move forward? How open are you are to working on new solutions?
  • How much do you care about your working relationship? Why is your collegial relationship important – do you have a vested interest in it? How important is your collegial professional relationship to the success of the whole team and your organisation?
  • To what degree do you feel you are right and the other person is wrong?
  • How might you have contributed to the problem?
  • What is in your control to improve working relationships now and for the future?
  • What is in someone else’s control to improve working relationships now and for the future?
  • What do you think should happen now (in the short term) and what needs to happen in the long term to develop your cooperative relationship?
  • Are you willing to develop and practice new skills in order to repair your working relationship?
  • Overall what does ‘success’ look like to you and to your organisation?

Through discussing the situation with those involved, one to one, I will get an overview of the situation and find out the history, the issues, and get a perspective from different points of view.  I will be fully briefed on what the parties want from this process going forward.  We will get a good idea of what has contributed to the relationship difficulties from their different points of view.

This is also a chance to identify things that are in each person’s control to improve the working relationships right now and for the future.  We will discuss the various options for resolution including the possibility of a facilitated meeting or mediation.

This stage can produce positive changes simply by bringing the issues out into the open and by taking immediate actions to improve the relationship. These sessions will be one-on-one with me and are part of an informal resolution process.

Stage 3:  Discussion of recommendations with the client. 

I will let you, the client, know the options for resolution, and give you my recommendations, including the cost of these.  We will discuss these and agree on the best way forward.  The solutions may include a mixture of coaching programmes, professional development sessions, facilitated conversations or mediation, or other organisational development strategies.

If I think a facilitated meeting will not produce the required success outcomes or is not in the best interest of the parties or the organisation, I will recommend other interventions. This could be if, in my assessment, the resolution of the conflict is outside the parties’ control, the situation is best resolved by other means, the parties are not capable of resolving this face-to-face or if a facilitated communication with the parties is likely to result in the worsening of working relationships, or is not in the best interests of the parties or organisation.

After this meeting, I will finalise my recommendations and if they are in writing I will send these to you (the client) with my fees.  These will be confidential to you, the client, and written without prejudice.  Since my report contains sensitive commercial information and is written for the client to consider the next steps, it is not to be shared with the parties.

If you decide to go ahead with my recommendations, we then work out the best way of communicating with the parties how we plan to proceed and agree on a start date.

Stage 4: Once we have a sign off, I go ahead with agreed recommendations.

Feel free to call and discuss this process by contacting me on 03 545 2567 or you can email me with your questions:
Forms of conflict resolution:

My work in conflict resolution takes a variety of forms:

  • Team or group development sessions
  • Leadership coaching to pre-empt and nip issues in the bud early
  • Training individuals and groups in the Cher Williscroft Courageous Conversations method
  • Facilitated meetings
  • Mediation
  • Repairing relationships: Improving trust and goodwill
  • Analysis of organisational conflict with recommendations
  • Giving staff feedback and improving performance
  • Working with leaders to improve organisational culture (how we do things around here)
  • Organisational development (changes in systems and how people work together)
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