John Ford & Associates - Workplace Conflict Mangement Services

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Subject: Conflict Management E-Newsletter #19

    Conflict Management E-Newsletter
              August 2001 #19

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1. Articles

Emerging Cultural Norms For Electronic Communication
by John Helie and John Ford
While electronic communication can be inclusive and
foster dialogue, the question of when and how to involve
others or to get involved is challenging. And because
these are early days of electronic communication,
cultural norms about acceptable behavior have yet
to fully develop.

Thoughts on the Limitations of Grievance Procedures
in the Private Sector
by Andrew Colsky
The number of lawsuits filed by employees has risen
dramatically. Individual employers began looking for
ways to prevent these lawsuits before they became
the next to be dragged into a court of law. Many turned
to traditional "grievance systems" which were developed
as an offshoot of the systems used in union contracts.
These systems, in the private sector are seriously flawed
and can actually encourage a lawsuit.

A Self-Managed Team Studied from a Theory-of-Action Perspective
Bruce Kaplan
This study uses a theory-of­action perspective to
describe the difficulties one team faced when it
worked as a self-managed team. These difficulties
are explained in terms of patterns of interaction,
particularly those related to inquiry, reflection, and
learning. This study shows how patterns of thought
and action on a self-managed team can negatively
impact its ability to self-manage. It illustrates how the
difficulties faced by a self-managed team can be
largely self-created.

2. Merit Systems Protection Board Administrative Dispute
Resolution Act of 2001
by House of Representatives (U.S.)

This Act will establish a 3-year pilot program that
will provide a voluntary early intervention alternative
dispute resolution process to assist Federal agencies
and employees in resolving certain personnel
actions.  A short-term pilot program is an effective
means to test whether ADR can resolve disputes,
limit appeals to the Board, and reduce time and
money expended in such matters.

3. A Supervisor's Guide To Preventing Sexual Harassment

In an employment setting, preventing sexual harassment
from occurring is frequently believed to be accomplished
through the anti-harassment policies and procedures the
employer establishes. However, the first and most critical
line of defense in preventing harassment of any kind is in
the roles and responsibilities of the supervisors and
managers. This responsibility is unfortunately, often
overlooked and undervalued.

4. HR Plaza Fast Facts

Employee Litigation Facts
Number of Companies Who Have Employee Practices Liability Insurance
Employee Practices Liability Insurance
Unscheduled Absenteeism: Cost and Reasons

5. Employment Law Memo is now on CD-ROM

* Contains hundreds of summaries from Jan-Feb-Mar 2001.
* Links to full text of cases when available.
* Organized by subject.
* $39.99 plus $3.00 for shipping and handling.
Ross Runkel, Editor
LawMemo.Com, Inc. - Keeping you on top of the law.

6. Reports

Employers' Experiences With ADR In The Workplace (1997)
by United States General Accounting Office

Employment Discrimination: Most Private-Sector Employers Use ADR
by United States General Accounting Office


"All polishing is done with friction."
Mary Parker Follet
ADR Pioneer

"The whole business starts with ideas,
and we're convinced that ideas come
out of an environment of supportive conflict,
which is synonymous with appropriate friction."
Michael Eisner
CEO and Chairman of Disney

8. Mediation and Conflict Resolution Training
Do you want to successfully resolve
disputes with confidence?
In this widely-acclaimed training you will learn a
step-by-step process for resolving nearly every
kind of business-related dispute. Trainer is Ron Kelly,
winner of six ADR awards, who brings you the
best techniques developed over fifteen years
of mediating. Five Saturdays, Sept. 22 - Oct. 27.
Offered by UC Berkeley Continuing Education,
Business and Management Department.
Call Ron Kelly at 510-843-6074

9. New Book

Mediation -- The Path Back for the Lost Lawyer
by John Van Winkle
Published by the American Bar Association
Readers will find this book irresistible if they are
interested in improving the lives of lawyers and
the legal profession. The new treatise traces
how we moved from being a noble profession
to being a billable hour-obsessed business
and demonstrates how we can return the
profession to a noble calling.
144 pp., paperback, 2001, ABA Product Code: 4740053
John R. Van Winkle, a past Chair of the ABA's Section
of Dispute Resolution, is a former trial lawyer turned
full-time Mediator.
It can be ordered through the ABA Service Center,

10. Feedback and Subscriptions welcome

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send an e-mail to
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