Mediation and Facilitation for Business

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There is nothing more valuable in business than clear agreements.

Agreements prevent or intervene in misunderstanding, conflict, or differences in business goals. They allow business partners, managers, and employees to move forward with a focus on the mission or goals of your firm or organization.

 

What is mediation for in a business setting?

  • Negotiating partnership or co-owner agreements

  • Renegotiating organizational or strategic direction

  • Addressing issues with or between employees before they escalate

  • Resolving disputes with clients

  • Facilitating community or customer forums

  • Resolving disagreements with or between board members

  • Discussing go/no go decisions with with projects or business operations

  • Dissolving businesses equitably

Moving from Intervention to prevention

The old saying, “A stitch in time saves nine” couldn’t be more appropriate when talking about conflict in a business setting. Unaddressed conflict in business gets more expensive with time. Research on the cost of turnover shows that it costs between 10% and 30% of a position’s annual salary to replace and train new employees and up to several times an annual salary for uniquely skilled or executive positions. These estimates don’t account for the impact on morale of unresolved problems, which can be a silent killer of customer satisfaction and employee productivity. Finally, the costs associated with missed opportunities or the dissolution of a firm/organization are immeasurable.

Whatever your starting point, I will work to help you resolve immediate issues and then move towards larger goals and long term solutions that will prevent future problems.

Unique Aspects of Mediation

Mediation is a unique approach to managing disagreement and conflict.

One of the top benefits for businesses is that mediation is the only dispute resolution process that provides legal confidentiality, which means that conversations, notes, and draft agreements are not subject to disclosure and cannot be used in any future legal preceding. This critical aspect gives mediation participants the opportunity to speak honestly, negotiate directly, and try out potential solutions in an experimental way, all outside of the public eye.

Mediation is entirely voluntary. Though there may be significant natural consequences to declining participation or failing to resolve a conflict, the mediator ensures that no one is coerced into reaching an agreement or signing a settlement. Because of the voluntary nature of mediation, agreements reached are more likely to work and last.

Finally, having a skilled mediator is critical to success. I am an expert in conflict and negotiation as well as business. This means that I am as comfortable with the human side of conflict as spreadsheets and financial analysis. As I have no stake in the outcome, I can ask critical questions that help form concrete, realistic, and lasting resolutions.

The untapped power of conflict in business

Though it rarely feels like an opportunity, conflict within a business setting can be a creative force for change. It can help clarify roles and responsibilities, point towards new or untapped opportunities, highlight needed personal or professional development, and remove blocks to creativity and energy to move forward.