Human Resources Guidebook to Workplace Conflict

Of all the departments that will need to deal with conflict effectively in a workplace, the human resources department is the most likely.  Outside of the hiring process, most employees will only interact with human resources during times of conflict, which often makes human resource departments the least favorite team to interact with for an …

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High Conflict Personality

High Conflict Personality

What is a high-conflict personality? If you have ever been in a conflict with a person who seems keener on continuing and escalating the conflict than resolving it, you may be dealing with one. High-conflict personalities are not the easiest to have conversations with, especially if you need to resolve the conflict.  However, high-conflict personalities …

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Mediation vs Arbitration: What is the Difference?

Mediation vs Arbitration

Mediation and arbitration are both found within the alternative dispute resolution sphere because they offer ways to resolve disputes outside of the traditional litigation process.  However, the procedures are very different.  Each system presents its own benefits and challenges, and neither system is truly superior to the other.  Understanding how and when to use each …

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Siege Mentality: What It Is and the Effects It Has

Many ideas in the world are expressed as binaries—good and bad, black and white, truth and lie.  Yet many concepts expressed in binaries often have a variety of options in the middle, creating a spectrum.  Learning to be comfortable with the spectrum is an important part of development; however, in certain situations, people will hold …

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Polarization in Communication: How to Avoid Polarizing Speech

As politics and other issues drive Americans further apart, it is commonplace to see polarization in communication in messaging online and in other sources.  Polarization encourages both those without a position to pick one and those with a position to commit to a more extreme version of the position.  The prevalence of polarization has increasingly …

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Structural Barriers to Good Communication and Agreement

Structural Barriers to Communication - ADR Times

Communication is an important part of any workplace or group setting, and a key component of reaching agreements.  When communication is healthy, a workplace or group can be productive and reach its objective.  When communication breaks down, other aspects of the workplace begin to fall apart as well.  In some cases, communication breaks down as …

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Transformative Moments in Commercial Mediation

Transformative Moments in Commercial Mediation

Mediation is a dynamic process. This can mean stepping back, leaning out, and adopting a process that empowers the parties to set their own agenda and seek outcomes that may greatly vary from the objectives set forth in the briefs by lawyers who are trained as advocates more than problem-solvers. In disputes where distributive bargaining …

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Improve the Chances Your Mediation Will Be a Success

Improve the Chances Your Mediation Will Be a Success

The vast majority of legal disputes aren’t ended due to a trial. But, at some point, the parties reach a mutually agreeable compromise, and the dispute is resolved. Mediation is one way to help parties reach an agreement if they can’t do it themselves. Attorney Richard Shore, writing in Forbes, has these ideas to help increase …

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Confusing Dispute Resolution Jargon

Confusing Dispute Resolution Jargon

In response to my question, “Do you use “BATNA” wrong?,” I plead guilty with an explanation. With the patient teaching of my friends, Hiro Aragaki and Sanda Kaufman, I have come to see the error of my ways. I was concerned because BATNA – the Best Alternative to a Negotiated Agreement – has become part of the vernacular, …

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