My name is Philip Baker. I'm a qualified and experienced workplace mediator, and a Fellow of the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development.
After an early career in the voluntary sector and education and training, I moved to local government and was Head of Personnel at an East Anglia local authority for ten years. I then spent a further ten years in the private sector, managing the HR function for a research firm with offices in London, Paris and Boston MA.
I have chosen to concentrate on mediation at this stage in my career, because I've reached the conclusion that many of the difficulties encountered by employers and employees in the workplace are the result of interpersonal issues which may remain unresolved over a long period. Managers sometimes feel ill-equipped to deal with such issues and shy away from tackling them. Others think that disciplinary action is the only tool at their disposal, but are reluctant to use it because they feel it will polarize things even more, or because they don't want to be seen as heavy-handed. Mediation is a powerful form of intervention, which provides managers with an alternative course of action, and enables those involved to take part fully in the process and to own the end result.
If you are considering using it, and would like to discuss the pros and cons with me, I will be happy to call you, or to meet you in person, for a conversation with no obligation to go ahead if you decide it's not for you.
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