Mediation & conflict resolutionWorkplace & Councillors

What is mediation?

Workplace Mediation is a confidential and informal way to resolve disagreements, disputes or grievances between people who work together.

The process is assisted by a trained mediator who acts as a facilitator. The process works by encouraging the parties to speak to each other and reach a mutually acceptable agreement that will sort out their problems. It gives the parties a chance to talk about the situation, express their concerns to each other and come up with some practical ideas about how things could change for the better. The dispute could be between two or more people. Mediation is highly recommended by Acas in the resolution of grievances and other workplace conflicts.

Mediation is:

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It cannot work unless all parties agree to mediation. It is therefore essential that the parties are not put under pressure to attend mediation or feel that it will count against them if they decide not to participate.

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A means for reaching agreement

The parties will be asked to identify their issues and concerns and from this an agenda will be set to help them jointly work towards an acceptable way forward. The mediator will encourage open communication and will help the parties to generate options and ideas that will improve the situation.

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The process is carried out on the basis of agreed confidentially between the parties and the mediator. The exception to this would be if a party raised issues of harm to self or others, or issues of serious misconduct. The content of mediation is not fed back to Human Resources staff or managers, nor is it recorded on the employee’s personnel file.

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The aim of mediation is to resolve issues at the earliest opportunity. Mediation can be arranged in a few days and the process can usually be completed in one or two days.

In-house mediator training courses

The next step on your journey might be training some in-house mediators.

We offer a range of courses from a one-day refresher to a three-day ILM accredited Mediation Course. Check out the course details on our Mediation Courses page.

We found the training very interesting and useful. Jennifer is a great trainer – very calm, measured and experienced. It was useful for our team to spend time together, share ideas and learn from an expert.

Attendee, bespoke mediation course

Using our Mediators

If in-house mediators are not the path for you, we have our own mediators who can undertake the intervention. So whether it’s two individuals, a group of workers or a team that need to resolve their issues, we’re just a phone call or email away.

What types of disputes can be resolved through Workplace Mediation?

  • Communication issues
  • Personality clashes
  • Unresolved or ongoing grievance issues
  • Perceived discrimination, harassment or bullying
  • Differences of working style or approach
  • Inappropriate use of power, status or position.

Workplace Mediation Service - the process explained

To find out more about using our mediators and the mediation process download our leaflet below.

Councillor Mediation Service

To further support our approach to workplace mediation we also provide a Councillor Mediation service. Councillor to Councillor mediation acts as a process to assist in rectifying disputes and conflicts within a political environment. Our extensive support and experience seeks to remedy and provide support and solutions to conflicts between councillors and ensures that disputes and relationship issues can be dealt with and rectified before they enter the formal procedures as outlined in the Councillor Code of Conduct (2021) and a Councils Standards Board/Committee. Our approach follows the same recommended procedure and framework as that undertaken between managers and officers.

We have experience of supporting councillor mediation arising from conflict and issues in Council, Cabinet, Committee and within/between political groups. Our approach has assisted Councils in rectifying disputes and behavioural issues and has prevented the escalation of disputes into more formal procedures. For an informal discussion as to how we can assist please contact

Writing a business case for mediation training

If you’re just starting out on your journey towards introducing mediation in your organisation you might find our research paper and case studies helpful in drawing up your business case.

Back in 2017, South East Employers engaged with representatives of more than twenty local authorities, not only in the South East but across the UK, conducting a programme of research and in-depth interviews. We produced a report along with a suite of case studies and supplementary papers exploring the stories of those organisations leading the way with improved management of conflict in the workplace. 

You can download the report and supplementary papers below.

If you would like to read more about the project go to our Mediation – Best practice in action webpage.

Best practice in action: Building organisational resilience through effective conflict management

Need a Mediator?

If you are interested in our mediation courses, or need the assistance of one of our in-house mediators please get in touch.

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