Specialized Department Conflict Resolution Project
A Community Hospital specialized department was undergoing significant conflict due to rapid growth, increased patient acuity and resultant increased workload and teamwork issues. The department was experiencing increased sick-time, grievances, difficulty with retention and recruitment. Patient safety was identified as being at risk.
mediate.calm used a multi-faceted approach which proceeded over a period of 10 months that included the following processes;
1. Conflict assessment completed at outset via individual interviews with staff and management
2. Issues identified were dealt with through creation of departmental working group that met weekly for 3 months.
3. The teamwork issues were dealt with through facilitated team meetings
4. Professional coaching for manager
5. Individual mediation for specific situations
6. One-one facilitated meetings with all staff and manager
7. Development of weekly management team meetings
Staff overwhelmingly agreed that the process was successful. Staff report decreased conflict, increased morale, increased job satisfaction. Manager seen as open, trustworthy, caring and committed to staff. Staff describe a changed work environment; more positive, responsive, transparent and efficient. Error rates were reduced. Staff retention and recruitment see positive change. Reduced sick time. Grievances were withdrawn.
Manager- Staff Member Mediation
Unionized staff member filed a grievance against the department manager alleging harassment. Staff member removed from unit following filing of grievance Facility completed an investigation that was inconclusive. Issue remained unresolved between parties over 18 months. Staff member wished to return to unit. Manager was hesitant to allow staff member to return due to harassment allegation. Facility attempted to resolve matter without success.
Mediation facilitated by mediate.calm proceeded with 2 hour individual meetings with staff member and manager to determine willingness to proceed. 2 hour mediation meeting with manager and staff member resulted in successful resolution of outstanding issues. Parties signed a ‘Working Together Agreement” which outlined responsibilities for each as well as a process for resolving future issues. At follow-up meeting parties report amicable working relationship continuing.
Time spent prior to mediation in grievance meetings, HR meetings, investigation etc. estimated at 150++ hours.
Mediation process: 8 hours
Facilitation of Planning Initiative
A large teaching hospital emergency department was facing significant
conflict with respect to the use of limited space when dealing with
a caseload that was increasing in both numbers and complexity. mediate.calm
facilitated a planning initiative in which the divergent interests
of several parties were discussed in an effort to arrive at a solution
that would satisfy the needs of patients, staff, the community and
the hospital administration.
Large Community Hospital Specialty Group Conflict
Applying classic techniques of IBN and CR, mediate.calm provided an external review of the causes, implications and possible
short- and long-term solutions to a conflict within a specialty
group. The situation had escalated to the point of involving other
departments within the facility, as well as potentially compromising
services to patients in several smaller communities.
Patient / Physician / Administration Conflict in Ambulatory
Dissatisfaction with the care provided by a free-standing clinic,
several of its physicians, and subsequent involvement of the clinic
administrator, led to a formal complaint to the licensing body concerning
the physicians. mediate.calm participated in a mediation process which led to better understanding
of the situation by all parties. A letter written by the complainants
endorsing the conclusions reached in the mediation led to closure
of the complaint by the licensing body with no further action.
Small Community Hospital Governance Dispute
In partnership with another CR services firm, mediate.calm was active in providing advice and direction to an outside agency
charged with resolving a long-standing and bitter dispute involving
multiple parties concerning the overall strategic mission and governance
of a small community hospital. Parties included the Board, the management
team, the hospital staff, different groups within the medical staff,
related community services, and patients and family members.
Reintegration of Specialist Physician at Large Urban Hospital
A long-standing conflict between the nursing staff, the administration
and several physicians led to the referral of one specialist to
the licensing body in connection with certain clinical situations.
After review and action by the licensing body, mediate.calm facilitated a series of discussions concerning the reintegration
of the physician, eventually leading to the development and signing
of a multi-party facilitation agreement that detailed the expectations
of all parties. Subsequent follow-up reviews by mediate.calm revealed ongoing successful application of the agreement.