Repairing workplace relationships
Yet again, working with parties in a mediation this week I was reminded of the range of solutions that are simply not options in other processes. This particular mediation involved the parties figuring out how they could work together in the future, since leaving the company was not an option for anyone. If the same conflict was to be avoided in the future, honest and open conversations were needed about practical ways of achieving that.
In the final session the parties spent time coming up with ways to prevent further conflict. Most often this part of the discussion centres around better communication - simple things like how people address each other can be really significant, and of course one of the most common culprits at the minute is the ubiquitous Zoom meeting which brings its own tendencies to misunderstandings and misinterpretation.
What parties are really doing at this stage is practising good communication and getting into the habit of talking things out - all too often that has been missing and has been a significant contributor to the conflict in the first place. The mediator at this point can begin to sit back and let the parties begin to lose the need for a third party facilitator - that's when you know the mediation has been successful!