Every relationship can have conflict, including those between an employer and an employee. Poor communication, miscommunication, discrimination, and termination are just a few issues that can lead to disputes.
While it may feel like going to court is the only way to resolve these problems, there is an alternative dispute resolution that may offer a better solution for everyone involved.
What are the benefits of mediation?
Mediation involves a neutral third party, known as a mediator. They work with the disputing parties to find a mutually acceptable solution to their conflict. Mediation is voluntary, and the mediator is not authorized to make the decisions for either party. They aim to facilitate communication to help the parties reach their own agreement.
There are several benefits to using mediation to resolve workplace conflicts, such as:
- It’s generally less expensive than litigation as it avoids the court fees and other costs associated with a lengthy legal process.
- Mediation can be scheduled at a convenient time for all parties rather than relying on the court’s availability. This allows both parties to reach a resolution more quickly.
- Court trials are public information. Mediation keeps the disputes and terms of agreement confidential, which can protect reputations and privacy.
- Since mediation is a collaborative process and focuses on finding a mutually beneficial solution, it can sometimes preserve working relationships.
- Both parties are more likely to comply with a resolution they reached themselves.
- Both parties have more control over the outcome of the dispute, unlike a court case that is decided by a judge or jury.
- Mediation allows for more flexible solutions and thinking “outside the box” for possible solutions.
- With a third-party, neutral mediator guiding the process, there is the opportunity for improved communication.
Resolving workplace disputes through mediation may not be a solution for everyone. However, it is certainly something to consider. Improved communication, confidentiality, and less time and expense can provide everyone with the best possible outcome.