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Expert
Conflict Coach
and Mediator

What fuelled my passion for conflict resolution and led me to developing my knowledge and skills in mediation?

Graham headshot

My journey in conflict management

I have worked within a range of organisations including corporate bodies, local authorities, and SMEs, where my experience has allowed me to appreciate how management structures and work cultures impact performance outcomes. My work as a leadership and management trainer, mentor, coach, and facilitator has given me a firm grounding in how to help managers and team leaders get the best out of their staff and teams.  My specialist areas of knowledge relate to interpersonal communication and the management of conflict.

I have considerable experience of designing effective learning and development processes, gained from working in a diverse range of business sectors. I believe that a focus on learning, not training, leads to effective and sustainable changes in how people grow, develop, and perform within the workplace.

 

I am a graduate of the Bristol Common Purpose programme: it developed my awareness of how communities are connected and which factors most influence key strategic decisions in Commerce, Health, Education, Local Government, and the Voluntary Sector etc.

As a qualified Mediator, I bring creative problem resolution skills to the development work I undertake with individuals and teams. I am also passionate about informal approaches to conflict resolution and the early use of workplace mediation to resolve disciplinary and grievance issues.

'My drivers today are still as strong as they have always been'

Why Me?

As a child at the age of 10, my family circumstances resulted in me moving to an inner city all boys primary school for my final year of junior education. I was ill prepared for the change from a nurturing and caring mixed gender school to a survival jungle that was harsh and tough by comparison.  I endured bullying that deeply affected me, and it shaped my commitment to helping others overcome similar challenges.

 

This early experience fuelled my passion for conflict resolution and led me to developing my knowledge and skills in mediation. My experience of community mediation and neighbour disputes taught me that people so often feel powerless, and simply do not know how to get out of what is a seemingly never-ending cycle of stress, anxiety, arguments and tit for tat exchanges.

 

Subsequently, my master’s in management training and development allowed me to research and develop my thinking and approach in the use of mediation in the workplace.  As an alternative approach to formal grievance processes, the use of mediation as has changed out of all recognition in the last 10 years, but my drivers are still the same. I have been able to use mediation to mitigate the inadvertent use of power and influence that is harmful to workplace relationships: sometimes this has been obvious such as persistently being micro-managed, or not so obvious such as being exposed to constant micro aggressions that never quite cross the boundary of breaching codes of conduct.

 

As a facilitator being qualified in the use of Belbin profiles, I have experienced much conflict in workplace teams that leaves individual team members frustrated, anxious and angry, largely because managers – whether formally trained or not – have little appetite for manging team conflict. The popular approach, born out by numerous studies, is avoidance, which I have experienced as being costly, unproductive and damaging to individuals, the team and the host organisation.

 

Having trained as a workplace performance coach back in 2012, and clocked up 1000s of hours coaching individuals, middle and senior leaders, I am now able to synthesise coaching and conflict management into my mediation and conflict coaching work.

 

My drivers today are still as strong as they have always been. I feel privileged to work with people to help them live wholesome and fulfilling lives. My work leads to clear outcomes, my clients:

 

·        feel in more control of their circumstances

 

·        recognise that conflict is a fact of life and simply has to be managed well

 

·        gain confidence in managing themselves and difficult situations

 

One of the foundational pillars of my approach is a commitment to the concept of ABC – always be contracting. I believe fundamentally in the importance of creating psychological safety, and when I have established it with a client looking to develop their conflict management skills, I make an observation: The person you are today is not the person you are going to become.

 

Are you ready for your learning journey? If so reach out via the contact form and let us set up a call to see if my approach meets your individual needs.

Services

Looking for a way to improve communication and resolve conflicts in your workplace? Look no further than Graham Norris! As an expert in team conflict coaching and using the RESOLVE model Graham can help you manage difficult conversations and create a more positive work environment.

Workplace Mediation

Conflict Coaching

RESOLVE

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