top of page

Workplace Mediation & Restoration


Photo Paulette DeKelver


Workplaces are dynamic, evolving spaces, more so today than ever as the world wrestles with what work space look like in the post-isolation era.  And in that space, there can be conflict.

A trained mediator and facilitator has the skills to bring parties together

in conversations built on respect and restoring trust, and rehabilitating teams.

When can workplace restoration help?

We all know it needs to happen. An issue has been brewing. People are not getting along. Issues remain unresolved and festering. Or, a complaint has been filed, or an investigation completed and a report submitted. 

Whether you are a manager or supervisor, senior leadership, or a member on a team, we have all been there. 



There needs to be a "talk", or several. 

You come up against hard conversations in your organization: 


  • The co-worker who doesn’t respect your ideas or interrupts you all the time. 

  • The fellow executive you don't see eye to eye with and the path forward seems more and more murky.  

  • The subordinate who continues to underperform despite extensive intervention. 

  • The resentful, distrusting, and fearful team rebuilding after a workplace investigation. 

When there is a topic that needs to be brought to the surface, and you don't know how to do it, or you are concerned about doing it wrong, or you just feel you don't have the stomach to get into it, these are the times a a mediator can help. 

A trained mediator has the skills to bring parties together for conversation built on respect, and restoring trust, confidence, and team. 

One of the key goals of mediation is to help parties be able to share their own perspectives as well as to hear the other side of the story. From an interest-based place of shared understanding, the parties work together to come up with solutions that address the underlying interests of the parties involved. 

Why should you deal with conflict?

You think, maybe I can avoid it, maybe it will go away. I have bad news. Most of the time, the “thing” does not go away on its own. 


Tension, resentment, and conflict grows. ​And, good people leave. This costs the organization and everyone involved. ​It doesn't take long to see how conflicts show up on the bottom line. There are many impacts of unresolved workplace conflict, some are measurable, some are not.  

Direct Conflict Costs 

Paid leaves with salary and benefit costs, 

Replacing lost employees – recruiting, orientation, and training costs,

Compensation to settle harassment and other claims,

Termination and severance,  


Legal and other costs of pursuing or responding to grievances, harassment, dismissal. 

Indirect Conflict Costs 

Stress of unresolved conflict can lead to the following: 


  • Mental health problems including stress, frustration, anxiety, depression,


  • Reduced morale and motivation, 


  • Reduced productivity, 


  • Damaged working relationships, 


  • Absenteeism,


  • Presenteeism – physically present but distracted and less productive, and


  • Disability claims. 

Dealing with conflict, instead of just hoping it will go away, helps avoid these costs and consequences. 


Photo Leonard Minish

So where do you start? 


Resist the urge to turn away.

Dealing with conflict starts by turning into the conversation. ​

The conflict may seem petty on the surface. Underneath there are almost always greater issues at play - loyalty, respect, reputation, accountability, to name just a few. 

People get into conflict over things that really matter.

Shifting the communication dynamic is key to resolving conflict. 

So what is a "communication dynamic"? It is the communication style or expectation in your work or professional organization. 


  • Do people share ideas, speaking often and freely? 

  • Does the organization value collaboration or fierce independence? 

  • Is everything done by email or do people meet face to face? 

These are examples of communication dynamics. Conflict arises from the communication dynamic between people.  

Shifting the communication dynamic is key to resolving conflict. 

Let that sink in. In fact, repeat that ... 

Shifting the communication dynamic is key to resolving conflict. 

Sometimes, people can shift the communication dynamic themselves. Sometimes someone in the organization can help. 
Sometimes, you need to bring in a neutral third-party, like a mediator, to help shift the communication dynamic. 

At its core, conflict is an opportunity to help people get into discussion over issues that are truly meaningful.

"If we manage conflict constructively, we harness its energy for creativity and development." 

Kenneth Kaye

If you are curious and want to learn more, let's connect.

bottom of page