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Hierarchy of Best Outcomes from Workplace Conflicts: A Case for “Just in Time” Mediation

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June 24, 2016

One of the common negative outcomes of the development of any specialist service – like mediation – is the undermining of skill development amongst the generalists. I’ll give you an example in less fancy language! The provision of take-away food outlets has had a highly negative effect on my 17 year old son’s culinary skills – to say nothing of his washing up technique!

The same goes for mediation. I have been interested to notice the take-up of mediation in different organisations who have started a mediation scheme. Many have had very few referrals – not unusual at the start of a scheme – whilst some have had hundreds! Some mediation schemes with those large numbers have won awards, many deservedly so I am sure! However it does make me worry that managers are passing situations on to the specialist mediation service which they might have formerly successfully resolved themselves.

People have asked me what I would consider the most successful outcome of a mediation and I have to answer that I my best outcome was to resolve it before the session! My hope would be that individuals are skilled enough to be able to resolve difficulties between themselves, if that fails the next best thing would be for their manager or managers to be able to intervene and help. For me mediation is the third best outcome.

With this is mind I have developed a short course for managers, supervisors and others responsible for others at work. I call it “Just In Time” Mediation and it’s just that – a course to help people intervene in a timely way. The course covers such matters as when to step in, how to prepare yourself to mediate, the structure of a “Just In Time” mediation and how managers can build better relationship across the company using mediation skills. If you’d like find out more, watch by brief (less than 4 minute) video explaining the course and sign up for my first open event on 21st September in Brighton – take a look here. It’s priced for extremely good value.

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