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Workshop A: Paul Andrew, Sunderland University
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Workshop A: Paul Andrew, Sunderland University


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Presentation by Paul Andrew, Equality & Diversity Manager, Sunderland University at CMP's 'Aiming for excellence' conference, 5 December 2008, London.

Presentation by Paul Andrew, Equality & Diversity Manager, Sunderland University at CMP's 'Aiming for excellence' conference, 5 December 2008, London.

Published in: Business, Health & Medicine

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  • 1. Using Mediation within good Equality and Diversity and HR practice
    • Paul Andrew, University of Sunderland.
  • 2. The story so far
    • Began with small team of Mediators and a pilot in two areas of the University
    • Extended team and remit to include all staff. Also including student areas.
    • 28 cases over 4 years
    • Has successfully resolved many sensitive situations that otherwise may have worsened or gone into other procedures
  • 3. How we use Mediation
    • As an optional route to achieve successful working relationships
    • A confidential process, separate to others
    • Part of a suite of options ranging from Grievance to Harassment
    • Less adversarial, greater emphasis on dialogue and co-operation
    • In line with our equality and diversity principles of encouraging mutual respect
  • 4. What is Mediation?
    • Mediation is a process by which an impartial third party helps people in a dispute work out a means of achieving a better working relationship
  • 5. Or, to put it another way….
    • Mediators:
    • “ help turn a two-way fight to the death into a three-way search for a solution”
    • Edward de Bono
  • 6. Resolving conflict 3 ingredients to all conflicts Interaction/Behaviour Contents Beliefs and values about justice and fairness
  • 7.
    • Mediation is:
    • An extremely effective problem-solving tool
    • Mediation can:
    • Transform the way people communicate, interact and manage conflict
    What Mediation can achieve
  • 8. Mediators help people to:
    • Talk to each other!
    • Express their concerns
    • Identify the issues
    • Identify their own interests
    • Identify common interests
    • Recognise and respect differences
    • Respond to one another’s concerns
    • Work out ways that both interests can be met
    • Find a way practical forward that meets needs
  • 9. The Mediation Stages
    • 1 & 2 First Contact with the Parties separately
    • 3 Planning the continuing process
    • 4 The joint meeting - setting the scene, hearing issues
    • 5 Exploring the issues and clarifying
    • 6 Building agreement and relationships
    • 7 Closure
  • 10. Cases (anonymised)
  • 11. The one-issue mediation
    • “ Close friend” Joanne had humiliated Susan at a training session
    • Complete breakdown of trust and personal relationship
    • Tense situation affecting whole team
    • Joanne apologised in the joint meeting
    • Both agreed to greater levels of respect with each other and in front of colleagues
  • 12. 20 years of hurt…..
    • Bob and Carol’s working relationship could be summed up as one of mutual distrust and antipathy
    • Only ever communicated by email……
    • Were required to jointly deliver an academic project
    • Mediation outcome involved protocols around joint working and an agreed third party mentor to stay on track
  • 13. The “unsuccessful” mediation
    • Philip and Wenyan had problems around their work styles and interaction
    • Mediation attempted to set ground rules concerning their working relationship
    • Wenyan and Philip signed up, but Philip did not engage in the process
    • Agreement quickly fell apart
    • Evidence of attitudinal issues with Philip
  • 14. The group mediation
    • Two factions in one large team
    • The two senior managers went through an initial mediation process
    • Outcomes shared with all colleagues in facilitated meeting
    • Team members built on the commitment of their managers and signed up to agreed protocols (work-related methods and values)
  • 15. The staff / students mediation
    • Students smoking outside building
    • Fiery Academic “lost it” with them
    • All parties had been going through separate processes
    • Mediation brought them together in a confidential environment
    • Mutual acknowledgement, apology, handshakes and withdrawal of grievances
  • 16. Mediation is not….
    • A replacement for harassment processes
    • Arbitration, negotiation or investigation
    • Recommended where there is a major power imbalance
    • Suitable if not agreed to by participants
  • 17. Mediation is….
    • Evidence that efforts have been made by individuals and the institution to resolve issues, whether successful or not
    • Non judgmental
    • A process that provides support and balance to participants
    • A route towards delivering successful working relationships.
  • 18. Any Questions?
    • [email_address]
    • 0191-5152436