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LATEST NEWS

Back from the brink

EVENTS

Forensic Psychiatry in Europe: What Works?

IN THE MEDIA

ProActive in the media

PUBLICATIONS

Respectful workplace – challenging the status quo

Recognize respect – vital signs

 

 
 
 
 

WELCOME

Speaking directly to people who make us feel uncomfortable isn't easy.

It's much easier to talk to others about how badly someone else makes us feel. In most cases, however, this can make matters worse and create serious team conflict.

In our latest news story Back from the brink find out how to transform conflict and bring your team back from the brink of a relationship abyss.

As this is our last e-newsletter for the year, we thank you for your support in 2010 and wish you, your family and friends a safe and happy holiday season.


Kind Regards,

Joe Moore
Managing Director
ProActive ReSolutions

LATEST NEWS

Back from the brink


Workplace relationships experience the same highs and lows as any other relationships – and team conflict is no exception.

When problems emerge, the first response of many staff is to lodge a grievance and managers want to know who has done what to whom and what needs to be done to them to get things back on track.

Code of silence

In England, Scotland and Wales, the ACAS (Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service) Code of Practice on disciplinary and grievance procedures sets out principles for handling grievances.

The Code of Practice encourages people to deal with grievances informally before lodging a formal complaint. While approaching those who make us feel uncomfortable is without a doubt the best thing we can do, it's difficult and risky, so we typically choose to talk to others rather than confront the 'offender'.

As we avoid engaging with each other, we start to resent each other and drift apart. As we drift apart, we start to notice and eventually look for and find annoying, unhelpful and even threatening behaviours in others. Eventually, what could have been dealt with as a low-level disagreement or dispute could escalate into a general state of negative feelings between people – a conflict.

Strong feelings

At ProActive ReSolutions we have been using Restorative Justice (RJ) Conferencing to respond to conflict in the workplace for many years.

Unlike our work in the criminal justice system, we don't start with an offender who has admitted guilt, or an obvious victim who can confidently lay claim to more hurt and harm than others. We start with a group of people who feel strongly about what has been happening.

The restorative process begins with confidential one-on-one interviews and listening to people tell their stories about what has been happening. We take notes, which we then trawl through back at our office, looking for incidents, issues and patterns of behaviour. These notes are kept confidential and destroyed at the conclusion of the restorative process.

Having identified the incidents and issues, our final task prior to the Conference is to persuade individuals who have some responsibility for the hurt and harm that has been caused to acknowledge and bear some personal responsibility. Such pre-conference persuasion is crucial when implementing RJ conferencing in the workplace.

Fair play

Once in the Conference, the process is similar to that of the RJ Conference in the criminal justice system.

Before the conference, our facilitator would have determined what would be talked about and individuals would have agreed in advance to talk about particular incidents.

During the conference, a conversation unfolds where the group slowly and tentatively begins to engage with each other on issues that are difficult to talk about and guaranteed to upset themselves and others. It's a process where we ultimately learn that we're almost always better off engaging with each other than ignoring each other.

The RJ Conference in the workplace follows the same principles as the RJ process in the criminal justice system. We want participants to leave the process with a sense that the process as explained (fair rules) was the process that was delivered (fair play) and participants considered the agreement they reached in the conference was fair and achievable (fair outcomes).

As in the justice system, the way we achieve this is to ensure the process is facilitated and all those affected attend the conference and have their say (participation), everyone's opinions are considered (political equality), all ideas are talked through (deliberation) and no one is able to bully or intimidate anyone else in the Conference (non-tyranny).

Complexity resolved

ProActive ReSolutions has been facilitating RJ Conferences in the criminal justice system and the workplace for 15 years.

The types of 'offences' dealt with in the workplace range from low-level disrespectful behaviours such as isolating others, spreading malicious rumours and gossip, insubordination and so on through to breaches of human rights and criminal law such as harassment, discrimination, intolerance, intimidation and assault.

Workplaces are complex and dynamic communities. Workplace conflict is about systems of relationships that have gone awry. RJ Conferencing is the approach that best accommodates the complexity and emotional risks faced by teams in conflict, who need to restore their relationships and plan how best to transform the conflict into ongoing cooperation.

For more detail, visit ProActive ReSolutions

EVENTS

Forensic Psychiatry in Europe: What Works?


December 9 - 10, 2010

Location: Alden-Biezen, Belgium

Presenter: Stephen Hart

Learn more about this event

PROACTIVE IN THE MEDIA

Recognize respect – vital signs

Published on Workplace Violence News as "Recognize respect"

Read the full story

Back from the brink

Published on WorkplaceInfo.com.au as "Restorative justice in the workplace – resolving team conflicts"

Read the full story

Rule of Respect

Quoted in "Rule of Respect" by Leo D'Angelo Fisher in BRW, October 28 - November 24, 2010, Page 72

PUBLICATIONS

Respectful workplace – challenging the status quo

A plain-English fact sheet to help you and your colleagues reap the benefits of direct conversations about difficult behaviours in the workplace.

View the fact sheet

Recognize respect – vital signs

A plain-English fact sheet that lists and explains the 12 vital signs of workplace respect, and explains how to praise respectful behaviour.

View the fact sheet

 
   
 

DISCLAIMER: ProActive ReSolutions Inc does not guarantee the accuracy, completeness or reliability of information appearing in the publication. ProActive ReSolutions Inc., its directors, employees, agents, licensees and shareholders, and all parties acting under ProActive ReSolutions Inc’s permission or authority, as well as the heirs and assigns of all such individuals or entities, will not be responsible for any liability arising in connection with any injury, damage or loss that may occur with regard to the material in this publication.

© COPYRIGHT 2010: ProActive ReSolutions Inc is the sole owner of all intellectual property, all trademarks and copyrights associated with names, products, and services of ProActive ReSolutions Conferencing and ProActive ReSolutions Inc. This publication may be copied, reproduced and distributed on the condition that it is copied, reproduced and distributed not for profit and the source is acknowledged.