Frequently Asked Questions
1. Which workshop will be best for my organisation?
That depends on what you are trying to achieve. Do you want to preempt conflict and give people the skills and insight to handle future conflict situations better? Then the Creative with Conflict workshop is best for you. Do you realise that people just misinterpret one another and should be more aware of how they speak to and about each other, then the Constructive Communication workshop will work wonders. If you are aware of pockets of unhappiness and tension and want to prevent a downward spiral then Constructive with Conflict will contain the conflict and restore relationships. Are you already embroiled in conflict and want to resolve that amicably? Then I suggest Workplace Mediation between the affected parties.
2. Why should I choose you?
I'm good at what I do. I've gained significant experience in designing and facilitating conflict management training, in both large companies and communities. I'm an internationally accredited mediator and use my conflict transformation and life skills to conceptualise unique workshops. I am creative, analytical and authentic and align myself with what I teach. I genuinely care about people and finding ways to help them transform their approach to friction and in doing so help them feel confident, seen, heard, understood and empowered.
3. What if I am completely conflict averse and even the word 'conflict' freaks me out?
The bad news is that even if you dislike conflict you will still encounter it. Shying away from conflict can lead to passive aggressive behaviours, people pleasing, compromising yourself and loss of a sense of self or resentment. In the professional space it often manifests as absenteeism, compromised work ethic and stressful relationships. The good news is that I am here to help! Through my workshops and coaching you will learn how to develop an assertive stance to conflict in a practical, relevant and affirming manner.
4. I realise that the value of constructive conflict is priceless but what will my immediate investment be?
The costs depend on the duration of the workshop and will be finalised once your unique requests have been discussed. Costs include all preparation and materials but exclude a venue as most training happens in-house.
As a rough guide:
For 12 attendees you can use R18 500 for a half-day workshop and R35 000 for a full-day workshop.
Should you have fewer than 10 people, individual rates are available on request.
Conflict Coaching is charged per person per session and varies according to the number of sessions needed. You can use R1 800 per hour as an indicator.
1. What would persuade you to use mediation if you were in a dispute?
You can mediate any matter. It all depends on what you need, fear or desire:
1. Is privacy important to you?
Mediation is confidential and private. You don't have to worry about losing your dignity or having your laundry aired in public.
2. Do you need someone who will really listen to you?
A good mediator has excellent deep listening skills and will ask questions to make sure that she understands what is at the heart of the matter and important to you. She will reframe what you said and summarize the important points so that you have no doubt about the fact that you have been heard correctly.
3. Do you want to be informed and included at all times?
You are directly involved in the process and finding the solution. There is no waiting for third parties to get back to you. There is no judge or court making a decision for you. There is no possibility of excluding you at any time.
4. Are you concerned about the balance of power?
The mediator is neutral but guides the process and will ensure that each party gets equal attention and opportunity during the negotiations.
5. Do you want a safe space to express how really you feel?
Mediation is a holistic process that allows for conciliation, emotions and negotiations. If an apology is needed as part of your process, then it can be included in the agreement.
6. Do you want to explore creative solutions to the problem?
The solution lies with you and the other party, not with the letter of the law, which opens the negotiations up to a myriad of alternative possibilities as long as it is acceptable to both parties.
7. Are you concerned about the future of the relationship?
Because mediation is based in communication the opportunity is there to clear up misunderstandings, eliminate misinterpretation and rebuild trust.
8. Do you want to prevent spending huge amounts of money?
Mediation is cheaper than litigation because it is a speedier process, you don't need an attorney and an advocate to argue for you in court and you don't have to wait years for a court date.
2. What are the benefits of mediation?
There are many benefits to mediating instead of litigating a dispute. Below is a list of some of them:
1. Parties who negotiate their own settlements have more control over the outcome and are more satisfied with the decisions, therefore a much higher percentage tend to honour the agreement and enforcement issues are not a problem.
2. Mediation is less time consuming because parties don't have to wait for an available court date and can get on with their lives.
3. Mediation is generally less expensive when contrasted to the expense of litigation or other forms of dispute resolution.
4. Gains and losses are more predictable in a mediated settlement than they would be if a case is arbitrated or adjudicated.
5.People who negotiate their own settlements often feel more empowered and have the opportunity for personal learning and transformation.
6. Parties can address both legal and emotional or psychological issues and include these in their settlement. The power of an apology is not included in a judgement!
7. The process of mediation can preserve or restore relationships or allow for the dissolution of the relationship to be more amicable.
8. If all else fails, mediation is voluntary, confidential, without prejudice and you can still go to court.
3. How does the mediation process work?
Once you decide on mediation and have appointed a mediator, the process will be explained to you in more detail.
Here is an indication of what you can expect:
1. The parties should receive an agreement to mediate that they need to sign.
2. The mediator will contact the parties beforehand to introduce herself, explain a bit about the process, reinforce confidentiality and ask for any relevant documentation, decision making powers etc to help her prepare. It is very important that both parties and the mediator prepare in advance.
3. You are allowed to have legal counsel present during a mediation.
4. The mediator will book a neutral space on an agreed date for the mediation to take place.
5. On the day parties will give opening statements about the matter and what outcome they seek.
6. The mediator will then split the parties and have separate confidential caucus sessions to explore the matter in more detail and to facilitate a negotiated agreement.
7. The settlement agreement will be drafted and signed by both parties. The settlement agreement must be viable and sustainable.
8. Don't expect that you will settle the matter in one day. The more complex the matter the longer it may take to reach agreement. It will still be quicker than litigation!
9. Negotiate in good faith, focus on mutual gains and the future, be aware of your underlying needs and the rest will take care of itself.
4. Why should I choose you?
I'm good at what I do. I hold several national (Conflict Dynamics / ACDR and GSB-UCT) and international (CEDR, CPR - New York City) mediation, negotiation and advanced mediation qualifications and have coached new mediator trainees for Mediation in Motion at UCT.
I started mediating personal, workplace, commercial and community matters in 2012. My largest Commercial mediation settlement was in excess of R1 million.
I have a deep understanding of business and organisations backed by 30 years of experience, including at COO and MD level which make me the ideal mediator for workplace disputes.
As a mediator I operate from the premise that if you are present and authentic you invite people to elevate the situation and themselves and show up in a manner that they have previously thought unattainable with inconceivable outcomes.
I blend my extensive mediation, cross-functional executive management and cross-cultural experience to achieve outcomes of understanding, mutual respect and resolution of dispute during mediation.
I place a high premium on assisting parties to work through their specific issues as constructively as possible by providing relative information, helping them minimise negative tactics and emphasising productive and creative ways to make decisions.
I am comfortable with conflict and able to remain non-judgmental, objective, fair, calm and discerning at all times. Parties are guided in a contained and neutral space to focus on their interests and arrive at solutions that will allow everyone involved to be at peace with the outcome.
My years as a teacher in deep rural areas and at NGOs working with a variety of communities at grassroots level, have made me deeply aware of issues affecting communities and equipped me to understand, engage with and mediate the issues at hand in a manner that is inclusive and transformational.
My intuition, ability to hold a space, high levels of creativity, analytical thinking and deep listening skills, seem to be especially effective in mediation. More than 80% of my cases have settled amicably, within 6 sessions and to the satisfaction of the parties.
1. Why should I choose you?
I'm good at what I do. I've gained significant experience through more than 30 years of helping people change the way they relate to financial issues in their lives. I combine my life experience, professional knowledge and conflict transformation practices to facilitate in a manner that instills hope and understanding. I am creative, analytical, have a head for numbers, a sense of humour and align myself with what I teach. I genuinely care about people and finding ways to help them acquire practical skills, deeper knowledge and more confidence so they can transform their approach to conflict and money and have a greater sense of calm while dealing with these issues.
2. How will a Financial Negotiation workshop benefit my company or organisation?
Strikes are expensive for both employers and employees and protracted strikes are often destructive which adds to the costs. Loss of income, costs relating to damages and fragmented tense relationships all have an impact on the parties involved and the sustainability of the organisation.
Educating and empowering your staff and managment well in advance is much cheaper and generally has a positive impact on relationships and rebuilding trust.
These workshops are much more interactive, cover broader topics and go into more detail than those offered by the CCMA. If you care about changing the pattern of your interaction with labour related matters and want to invest in the future of your company, staff and ultimately the country, then this is the right workshop for you.
Contact me to discuss your specific needs for a tailor made workshop.
3. I realise that the value, skills and knowledge I will gain is priceless and will benefit my employees and organisation or family for years to come but how much is the immediate investment?
The costs depend on the duration of the workshop and will be finalised once your organisation or union's unique requests have been discussed.
Costs include all preparation, facilitation and materials but exclude a venue as most training is conducted in-house.
As a general indication:
For 12 attendees you can use R17 750 for a half-day workshop and R30 750 for a full-day workshop. For more than 3 workshops per organisation a 10% discount will apply. Should you have fewer than 10 people, individual rates are available on request.
Financial coaching is charged per session. The final rate will depend on the number of people involved and the number of sessions needed but you can use R1 600 per head per session as an indication.