A Guide to Effective Communication for Conflict Resolution introduces the 9 Principles that are also described on this site to help the reader develop a 'mindfulness' in relation to their communication in a way that supports the resolution of conflict. In this book
Alan shares his observations and learnings from working as a Mediator and Conflict Coach with regard to the ways that people become stuck in unresolved conflict but also how they go on to create more effective ways forward in their difficult situations.
"I think you put together so well all the essential components of
conflict transformation in a way which people can relate to and
understand. A brilliant book and I will recommend it to everyone."
Jo Berry - BuildingBridgesForPeace.org
From Chapter 1 in the book 'How to Resolve Bullying in the Workplace':
"The problem with bullying in the workplace
is that traditional responses to allegations that it is happening require the
person who feels bullied and anyone who is helping them with their concerns to
While those who feel bullied may see their
experience as ‘obviously bullying’, there will be others who do not, including
of course the person who they consider to be ‘the bully’. This expectation of proof of bullying becomes
an immediate obstacle in moving forward in any difficult situation or
relationship in the workplace.
The various definitions of
bullying that can be found in dictionaries or guidelines or in articles online
and in the printed press read as if they are very clear. But when used as a
basis for assessing whether bullying has taken place they are ambiguously
interpreted because of the subjectivity of the perceptions of those involved.
.........This is the bad news in relation to
bullying. From the very start of any procedure designed to ‘tackle’ it by
proving it has occurred there is ambiguity for anyone involved, whether the
person who feels bullied, the person they see as ‘the bully’ or any managers or
Human Resources officers who are required to deal with it.
The consequence of this is a circle of
finger-pointing - blame and accusations and counter-accusations of bullying,
incompetence, conspiracy, lack of care, burying of heads in the sand and so
very little change, if any, occurs in the majority of cases where bullying is
..........But within this recognition of the
ineffectiveness of proving bullying has occurred resides the possibility for
breaking out of the circle of blame and accusations that lead to
dissatisfaction all round the circle. This possibility is available to all
involved in such situations if they are able to do one thing:
To let go of the focus on
As I will discuss in the next chapter, the
ways in which I have seen people resolve workplace disputes where originally
there have been accusations of bullying and harassment have been where the term
‘bullying’ retreats from the discussion.
When this happens, a more useful, detailed discussion
relevant to the unique circumstances and perceptions of those involved can
occur, enabling, and expecting them to create their own answers to their
difficult working relationship."