Conflict is an inevitable part of the workplace, even in the most cohesive settings. Disputes between employees are disruptive and negatively impact employee productivity, customer service, staff turnover and public image.
Workplace mediation offers an opportunity to address conflict quickly and effectively, improve morale, increase productivity and retain valuable employees.
In an Employee-Employee mediation, our mediator will facilitate an open discussion, helping both employee’s to recognize each other’s views and better consider how the dispute may be resolved. When given the opportunity to participate in a mediation session, employees are able to gain a better understanding of the conflict at hand and learn to communicate more effectively with one another. The goal of the mediation is for Employee’s to have a safe environment to communicate their feelings, validate their concerns and explore alternative, healthier solutions to interact with others.
The Four Steps in Mediation Process:
- HR/Management consultation with EAP to determine if mediation is appropriate for the situation at hand.
- Individual Assessments: If EAP Specialist determines that mediation may be appropriate, the mediator will first meet with each Employee individually to further assess if they are good candidates for mediation. If they are, mediator will help prepare each individual for the upcoming mediation. Mediator will coach Employee in effective communication strategies and provide focal points for each individual to reflect on before the mediation session.
- Employee-Employee Mediation : Mediator will meet with both employees to discuss the issue at hand. Employees will be encouraged to communicate their feelings in a sensitive, calm manner. Employees will be asked to listen and reflect on one another’s responses. Then an agreement to move forward from the conflict will be discussed and solutions to move forward and interact more effectively will be explored.
- Follow up: In some situations, one mediation session is suffice. If mediator deems another session may be helpful, a follow-up appointment will be scheduled. Follow up with management/HR will also take place to track Employee’s progress in working together.
Conflict between multiple co-workers? Tension within a department? Our mediators are also available to provide group facilitations among department groups. Our mediator will meet with employees together in a safe environment to discuss points of conflict and explore healthier alternatives and solutions. Conflict resolution and team-work strategies will be discussed. This is a combination strategy of educating employees on healthy communication & facilitating their individual progress.
“Several months ago I had two employees who did not get along with each other. They were refusing to work together and had numerous altercations. Each employee felt the other employee was at fault. Initially, I tried to meet with both employees separately and together, to work out their issues and to formulate a plan so that they could work collaboratively and effectively with each other. Unfortunately, I was unsuccessful in meeting this goal and the two employees continued to not be able to work together. I called National EAP to ask for help. It was suggested that I try their mediation services.
I met with Julie Simon, the mediator and we worked out a plan based on my goals for these two employees. Julie met with both employees separately and in a group. Both employees were able to speak their minds and share their frustrations with Julie. I believe they felt more comfortable in speaking with Julie – as an impartial professional who is trained to deal with these issues – versus myself as their supervisor.
Mediation from National EAP solved the issues between these two employees. Before mediation these two employees were unable to work together – and after mediation, which allowed them to “hear” each other’s perception of the situation, they were able to mend their relationship and work together efficiently and respectfully. In fact, they ultimately became friends.”
Director of a healthcare agency, NY