Unresolved boardroom wrangling has destroyed many firms
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Many organisations have collapsed, and many more continue to face challenges as a result of differences among the top managers.

Often, little differences at the workplace escalate into internal conflicts among the top hierarchy of the organisations.

It is evident that unresolved disputes, which are characterised by frequent boardroom wrangling, continue to affect productivity and profitability adversely.

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A lot of organisations become disorganised when confronted with such dispute situations mainly because they cannot resolve differences at the top level, and that inadequacy eventually results in organisational failure.

However, Executive Mediation offers the solution to the challenges that many organisations face today.

According to Austin Gamey, a renowned Ghanaian ADR practitioner and labour expert, dispute resolution at the executive level require a strategic approach which is best offered through the Executive Mediation mechanism.

He defines Executive Mediation as a strategic management of organisational conflict which is intentionally planned to ensure a swift resolution of disputes among executives.

Because the consciousness of the organisation is in the mind of the executives, Mr Gamey explains that Executive Mediation is designed to efficiently deal with all differences to avoid any artificial harmony which can destabilise the organisation structure, and affect the control of workforce and productivity.

Boardroom wrangling is bound to occur since the human would naturally have differences, but the key solution is to have a plan in place to deal with disputes at the executive level.

“If you don’t plan to prevent it from becoming a crisis, it can affect your Return on Investment (ROI),” Mr Gamey indicates.

A lot of things will go wrong if an organisation fails to use executive mediation to ensure a swift resolution of a dispute, he says.

In rolling out executive mediation, the Interest-Based Approach is critical to ensure a satisfactory resolution since a win-win situation would be guaranteed.

Three approaches can be used in conflict resolution; the power-based approach, right-based approach and interest-based approach.

In power-based approach, a party or both parties try to win by using one’s strength to prevail over the objections of opponents, and someone always loses a power contest.

In the rights-based approach, parties try to win by appealing to legal or moral authority, past precedent, or other external judges. Like the power-based approach, someone always loses a rights’ contest since each party’s objective is to secure or protect his/her rights in isolation to the others feelings.

The interest-based approach, however, ensures that the interests of all parties are reconciled and addressed for the benefits of the organisation.

It is much better than the Power-based, and Rights-based approaches as the focus here is directed towards a mutual gain situation.

“It is about helping to maximise the interests and minimise the rights and power play in disputes.

“When that is effectively done, the totality of organisational efficiency, productivity and cooperation is enhanced,” Mr Gamey noted.

He added that a key strategy organisations need to adopt towards organisational effectiveness and preventing or resolving conflict is to factor conflict in their budget and invest in the training of managers and the entire workforce to equip them with core skills in the areas of Preventive Mediation, Managerial Mediation, Self-Mediation and Executive Mediation.

By Nii Adotey/adrdaily.com

VIANii Adotey
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ADR Daily is a specialized news portal with a focus on providing authentic news, information and research analysis on Appropriate Dispute Resolution (ADR), Human Resource Management (HRM) and Industrial Relations Management (IRM) in Ghana and beyond. This platform serves as an information resource base for the progress of the ADR, HRM and IRM industries, and seeks to promote professionalism in ADR practice by supporting a network of ADR professionals within and across nations and continents. ADR Daily keenly encourages the mass adoption of ADR mechanisms, particularly negotiation, mediation and arbitration for the resolution of disputes in all spheres, through the publication of industry news and information, as well as by deploying innovative awareness creation engagements.