What even is a conflict coach and when can I use one?
“Coach” is a big buzz word these days in the modern gig and entrepreneur economy. So much so that many people often don’t really know what the title means (myself included) or have a vague or specific idea shaped by their own lifestyle (aka lifestyle coaches). I wanted to take a moment to explain what I mean when I say conflict coach or consultant so you know exactly what you can expect to get, and how you know if I’m the right person for the job.
A coach, to me, means someone who acts as a personal consultant to you. And to me, a consultant is a fancy word for someone who holds relevant experience in a specific area of work, study, lived experience, etc. Unlike a mediator who remains impartial, a coach can provide their opinion to you based on their experience and knowledge. Coaches and consultants often have their own system of doing things and their own methods and approach, developed and shaped by their experiences and value systems.
In short, you come to us with a problem or with questions, and we work alongside you to try and help you solve or move through the issue; improve conditions or take things to a new level.
So what does a conflict coach even do? We use our experience and methods in conflict work to support people in preparing for it, managing it or recovering from it. Some conflict coaches might specialize in certain domains such as family/relationship, corporate, public sector, HR or PR. So finding the right one for you is important. I specialize in working with community groups, organizations and small businesses. This includes working with people who work together, share space together, or who are in various leadership positions. Beyond offering trainings and mediation, I offer consultation in a variety of areas.
So when can you use a conflict coach like me?
-FOR CONSULTATION ON HOW TO NAVIGATE/RESPOND TO COMPLAINTS
Receiving complaints and not sure how to navigate or respond? This is a really important first step that can shape the rest of the process. We can talk about it and determine the best way to proceed.
-FOR CONSULTATION ON CREATING POLICY (HARASSMENT, BULLYING, CONFLICT, ETC)
Want support in creating policy? I can help you with its research, to its creation, to its execution.
-FOR CONSULTATION ON CREATING PROTOCOL
Want support in creating protocol? I can help you research, write and execute this, too.
-TO AUDIT EXISTING OR NEWLY CREATED POLICY & PROTOCOL
Have new or existing policy/protocol and want to see how it holds up? I can review it for you and offer feedback.
-FOR CONSULTATION IN RESOLUTION & ACCOUNTABILITY MAPPING
Have your own internal Conflict Resolution committee, Human Resources department, Board of Directors or Ombudsmen (or essentially any body that deals with handling and investigating complaints), but need external support? I can offer feedback on existing situations or help with the planning structure of new ones.
-FOR FACILITATING CONTACT & COMMUNICATION
Having a meeting? Need someone to facilitate the dialogue and watch out for dynamics and behaviour? Over a decade of facilitation experience means I can do all this and stick to the agenda at the same time.
-FOR FACILITATING VISIONING & STRATEGY SESSIONS
Is your team needing someone to facilitate visioning or strategy building meetings? I can act as just a facilitator (just executes the agenda and supports the flow of dialogue) or as a facilitator and consultant (all that plus developing the strategy along with the rest of the team).
-FOR FACILITATION OR CREATION OF CONTENT FOR TRAINING & FACILITATION GUIDES
Are you planning team building trainings, retreats, meetings, conferences, etc? I can create your content or facilitate it (or both).
-FOR HOLDING SPACE
Just want to talk to someone about your conflict issue or ask a question? You can schedule meetings with me (1:1 in person or online). All meetings are confidential.
So that’s what a conflict coach does. We use our knowledge and experience to support your group in building stronger infrastructure for dealing with conflict or working through stressful or difficult periods. We can wear many hats but essentially we are a consultant. We offer resources, opinions and knowledge sharing. It can be a one time meeting though more so it is a bit more of an ongoing relationship that spans the duration of a project or period.
So that’s that. Think this could benefit you or your group? Get in touch so we can discuss your needs further and conduct an assessment.