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Becoming a ‘conflict competent’ employer

Conflict occurs in a multitude of contexts. It may be two colleagues who seem unable to work together, a poorly handled customer complaint, a serious accusation of fraud or incompetence or a team that has split into factions.

Conflict has a habit of drawing in resources, compromising performance and taking up valuable time, all of which have significant human and financial costs.

Organisations that invest in conflict prevention are characterised by having:

  • A robust set of policies and procedures to handle everything from whistleblowing through customer feedback to grievance resolution
  • Confidential helplines to capture and manage whistleblowing claims and to support employees who are affected by conflict
  • Trained individuals to help the victims of bullying and harassment to decide how they wish to handle their situations
  • An external or in-house team of trained mediators to deal with conflict quickly and skilfully
  • Trained investigators to carry out HR investigations in a timely and professional manner
  • Management development programmes that include the soft skills involved in defusing conflict, dealing with difficult people and achieving positive results from difficult conversations
  • Highly trained customer feedback professionals, who are skilled in dealing with complaints and empowered to improve the customer experience

Working with such an experienced and professional organisation has been incredibly refreshing and our in-house mediation service has been enhanced as a result. The course was fantastic and people left feeling confident with the skills. The course content was comprehensive and the training techniques first class. The trainer worked with us to discuss service development and implementation. CMP Resolutions provided a lot of support which has helped immensely in getting this project off the ground.

Mediation Service Project Lead and ILM Professional Workplace Mediator Delegate, HR Projects ManagerUniversity of York

CMP’s independent investigation enabled a clear decision to be made. CMP is a very good company to do business with – reliable and thorough, they deliver within timescales and keep you informed. They provided very good value for money and I would definitely recommend CMP.

Independent Investigation referrer, HR Managera London Borough Council

I have always found CMP courses to be stimulating, challenging, at the cutting edge of current thinking and practice, while professionally delivered and supported. The ILM Professional Workplace Mediator programme, delivered to us in-house, was no exception and feedback from the participants fully endorses my comments.

Mediation Service Commissioner, Mediation and Conflict Resolution ManagerDevon County Council

CMP delivered intensive bespoke conflict management courses of varying levels to 200 managers, to achieve a significant boost to managers’ confidence and skills in managing transition during a time of change, and contributing significantly to achieving the organisational goal of preventing and managing bullying and harassment. From our initial discussions, it was evident that CMP were keen to listen to our needs and work with us to develop a course that satisfied our requirements. The successful partnership combined with local provision and high-quality trainers has developed into a key part of our overall strategy for management development of our staff.

Bespoke Conflict Management Training Buyer and Delegate, Senior Divisional Officer Hampshire Fire and Rescue Service

The support and advice we have received thus far from CMP Resolutions has been invaluable to us as an organisation. We appointed CMP in 2014 to provide expert mediators in a timely fashion, and renewed our contract with them for a further 3 years.

Mediation Service CoordinatorUniversity of Northampton

We chose CMP Resolutions to deliver the ILM Endorsed Professional Workplace Investigator training as it was a unique product that was available. The delegate feedback has been extremely positive. The training has helped to improve the way in which Terms of Reference are set, ensuring that investigations are tightly described and therefore less likely to go off track, ultimately saving both time and money. Also a key element of the course was the skills practice on building rapport under pressure which has greatly improved our investigation practice. We would whole heartedly recommend CMP Resolutions.

ILM Endorsed Professional Workplace Investigator Training Buyer and Delegate, Director of HRIndependent Police Complaints Commission

Thank you CMP for the excellent training.  We have received very positive feedback from those who attended the course.  The literature provided by CMP was professional, thorough and easy to understand.  We would always recommend you to others.

Mediation Service Commissioner and ILM Professional Workplace Mediator Delegate, Service Manager Young Devon

I have no hesitation in recommending CMP, they offer excellent value for money and provide a service that is second to none! CMP provides a complete and professional service. From initial enquiry through administration and delivery, CMP covers all the bases. They are knowledgeable, professional and approachable and found flexible solutions to our training requirements. The feedback for the training has been outstanding. In addition to a collection of superlatives such as “fantastic” “inspiring” and “excellent” staff have stated that they came away with practical advice they can apply in real situations and, more to the point, have said it works!

Bespoke Conflict Management Training Buyer, Staff Development AdvisorUniversity of Gloucestershire

CMP is an organisation at the top of their game and this was evidenced by the calibre of the trainers assigned to my project. Seldom do Training & Development Managers receive outstanding feedback from 100% of delegates who reported being fully engaged across six days of training. The CMP trainers, through their delivery style, personalities and course content and structure, did exactly this.

Mediation Service Set-up Commissioner and ILM Professional Workplace Mediator Delegate, Training and Development ManagerBoard of Community Health Councils Wales

My test of a good training provider lies not with it’s “off the shelf” courses, but in how it applies its skills to the context of the customer. The tailored mediation training provided by CMP not only met my benchmark test, but exceeded it by some margin.

From commissioning to organising the training, then the delivery and follow up CMP have been exceptional as they are interested not only in the quality of what they deliver but in the quality of what we as a customer can then do.

Mediation Service Set-up Lead and ILM Professional Workplace Mediator Delegate, Senior HR ManagerHighlands and Islands Enterprise

Workplace Conflict

This short video shows how a lack of “conversation” culture can lead to an escalation in conflicts.

Making dispute resolution work in your organisation

To change the culture of conflict at work needs more than employers setting up a mediation service: what is needed is an investment in building workplace conflict competence.

This paper introduces the changes you should consider making to reduce the wholly unnecessary cost of conflict to your organisation.

How to make DR work at work
A strategic approach to conflict management case study