Trebles all round for Employment Lawyers!

Mediation Employment Claims Treble

It’s trebles all round for employment lawyers as the most recent figures from the Ministry of Justice show that in the quarter from July to September 2017 the number of claims issued in the Employment Tribunal trebled.

In the period , April to June 2017, 4,241  individual claims were issued, but in the three months from July to September 2017 that number rose to 7,042.  Furthermore, there was a 144% increase in the number of multiple claims during the same period. These figures appear to suggest that the abolition of Tribunal fees following the Supreme  Court decision in July 2017 has had a significant impact on the issuing of claims.  Continue reading “Trebles all round for Employment Lawyers!”

Performance Management: Accentuate the positive…

A new piece of research entitled “Strengths-based performance conversations: an organisational field trial” has been published by CIPD (November 2017). It shows clear evidence that performance review conversations with staff that focus on their strengths and how to improve performance even further has a very positive influence on the relationships between staff and management.  

The report notes that managers often find having conversations with staff about performance to be very difficult, using expressions such as ‘relentless’, ‘very stressful’, ‘tough’ and ‘challenging’. Continue reading “Performance Management: Accentuate the positive…”

Thriving At Work?

The recent ‘Thriving at Work Report’, co-written by Paul Farmer, the CEO of mental health charity, Mind and Lord Stevenson makes the following key points:

  • Mental health illness affects 1 in 6 people
  • 300,000 people with long-term mental health problems have to quit their jobs annually
  • The report makes 40 recommendations for ways in which support employees to remain at work
  • All employers, regardless of size or industry, should adopt 6 ‘mental health core standards’ that lay basic foundations for an approach to workplace mental health.
  • They should also set themselves a performance objective to support the mental wellbeing of all employees, through the implementation of the core and enhanced standards.

For a number of years, there has been a growing awareness and appreciation of Continue reading “Thriving At Work?”

Dealing with conflict: Fudge, tackle, avoid?

Fudge Tackle Avoid

Workplace conflict is inevitable and takes many forms, from subtle, passive aggressive undermining, through a whole spectrum of behaviours up to full-on verbal or even physical confrontation.

How well do you manage those different types of conflict where you work? How well do those around you manage their conflict? When you spot a potential issue do you roll your sleeves up and tackle it head on or are you more inclined to fudge it in some way without really resolving the problem or do you avoid dealing with it, hoping the problem will resolve itself?

Whichever approach you take, if you are honest with yourself, the chances are that you feel you could do better and should try to find more effective resolutions.   You have probably received a lot of training as to how to do your job. It is less likely that you or your colleagues have had much targeted training in how to manage conflict in your working relationships or in the relationships of those around you, whether direct reports, your co-workers or even your bosses.

There are a number of core skills that you will need to master to manage workplace conflict better: Continue reading “Dealing with conflict: Fudge, tackle, avoid?”

A Salutary Lesson?

mediation conflict

It is not often that people blog about their business failures, but today’s post is all about a proposal for a workplace mediation that we made which was not accepted, primarily on grounds of cost. The reason we are blogging about it is because, somewhat unusually, we were made aware of the eventual outcome of the situation we were proposing to mediate and we believe it serves as a salutary lesson to those who think that mediation is not worth the cost.

We spend a lot of time talking to prospective clients about the cost of mediation and how spending money on mediation will usually lead to very substantial savings. Continue reading “A Salutary Lesson?”

Don’t Give A Dam…

Following the Supreme Court decision last week that the Government’s Employment Tribunal fees scheme was unlawful and had to be scrapped, companies like Peninsula are predicting (perhaps somewhat hysterically and perhaps because it is in their interests to do so) that the dam is about to burst and that there is about to be a surge of new Employment Tribunal claims. Although few people expect the number of claims to climb straight back up to previous levels and although the Government may yet seek to introduce a revised fees regime that is less objectionable, there is almost certainly going to be an increase in claims. Continue reading “Don’t Give A Dam…”

Austerity in the Workplace

Antony Sendall has been asked to join the HIVE panel to debate Austerity in the Workplace at their 2017 Annual Soiree on Thursday 21 September 4.30pm to 7pm. HIVE is the Society for Workplace and Employment Mediation. It is likely to give rise to some lively discussion, so why not come along to join in?

Antony has already been amused by the fact that the poster for an event to discuss ‘austerity’ in the workplace has a glass of prosecco as its principal motif. Is the point that pre-2008 it would have been champagne?

You can get your tickets by clicking here

Employment Tribunals Fees Scheme struck down and scrapped by Supreme Court

A hugely important Supreme Court decision this morning has resulted in the scrapping of the current Employment Tribunal fees scheme. The Fees Order has been found to be unlawful under both domestic and EU law because it has the effect of preventing access to justice. Since it had that effect as soon as it was made, it was therefore unlawful and has been quashed. Continue reading “Employment Tribunals Fees Scheme struck down and scrapped by Supreme Court”

Mind the Mental Health Gap

In recent years there seems (anecdotally, at least) to have been a marked increase in litigation involving employees with mental health issues. Litigation can be especially challenging for people with those types of issues. Therefore, one might have expected there to have been a rapid growth in alternative forms of resolution for such cases, particularly workplace mediation. However, we have noticed that many mediation organisations suggest that workplace mediation is actually inappropriate when the employee is suffering from mental health issues. We find this approach both disappointing and completely counter intuitive. Continue reading “Mind the Mental Health Gap”