Conflict Management

The Difference Between Responding and Reacting

respond image

The first step to achieving collaboration is to recognise that in every situation we have a choice to react or to respond. Reacting comes from a place of fear and a need to defend oneself – whether this is achieved by attacking someone with aggression or avoiding a person or situation. When choosing to respond, […]

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Workplace Humour Can Lead To Workplace Conflict

workplace humour

There certainly is a need for humour and light hearted banter in the workplace to improve team morale and cohesiveness. Typically one employee stands out as the stand up comedian guaranteed to make the crowd chuckle. Over time, it becomes evident if everyone warms to this employee because they have a great sense of humour […]

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Reoccurring conflict is not grounds for dismissal unless…

Reoccurring conflict can be a puzzle

This item looks at what can we learn from a Fair Work Commission decision dated 5 December 2014. The case was Jacqueline Lumley v Bremick Pty Ltd Australia t/a Bremick Fasteners (C2014/5516). Reoccurring conflict between the same two parties may be grounds for dismissal if all reasonable steps have been taken to resolve the matter underpinning the […]

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Workplace Mediation – the Benefit of Participation

Workplace Mediation

At times we can feel overwhelmed by the frustration or hurt we believe has been caused by a colleague who has shown a lack of consideration, displayed inappropriate behaviours, used offensive language or is just not ‘playing fair’ as part of a team. Repeated small incidents plant the seed for workplace conflict. With no resolution […]

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What we can learn from New Jersey?

view of New Jersey

3 simple lessons we can learn from a little Municipal Court in New Jersey, USA ​Being pioneered is a new program that underpins a lateral view to procedural fairness – that ‘people are far more likely to obey the law if the justice system does not humiliate them, but treats them fairly and with respect’ –  […]

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Unfair Dismissal Upheld Due to Lack Of Process

Fair Go

The recent case of Poultry Harvesting Pty Ltd, highlights how a justifiable reason for dismissal does not meet the requirements of a fair dismissal if a fair process has not been followed. In this case ( [2015] FWC 3126) a worker was sacked for allegedly being intoxicated while at work and causing the death of […]

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Grievance procedures: should a complaint be made in writing?


A complaint or grievance should not be considered valid only when an employee puts their concerns in writing. It used to be considered ‘dangerous’ for a manager or HR to act on an informal complaint that was not in writing. Having seen examples of this in practice, I consider it more dangerous for the manager […]

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Grievance Handling Procedures And Informal Complaints

dog listening

With respect to taking notice of informal complaints and where they fit in the context of grievance handling procedures –there are three types of manager: Those who, when listening to staff, just hear comments but don’t consider them as grievances; Those who, when listening to staff, hear a concern and hold further discussions; and Those […]

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