Conflict Solved: Doc Peg is IN

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You have some great choices for solving a conflict. I love that. 

Once upon a time, a colleague described me as the most "strategic"  person he had ever met. I should have stopped and asked what that meant, but to be honest, I was so flattered that I hugged myself and kept walking . To me “strategic” means I have choices, in the tools I use and how I use them.  

This web site and my Doc Peg is IN blog give you choices.  

Non choices:

- people almost never get all they initially want when in conflict.

- creating optimal solutions takes about 10 times longer than you thought.

- mixing and matching ways of solving a conflict maximizes outcomes.  

Your choices.  

1. don't ignore conflicts. You and those you care about need thoughtful reactions. Your mantra could be: "My choices are not limited. I am not stuck with negative choices. This is work, but it is important work for me and all the people and organizations I care about."   

2. asking for help is not an admission of failure. Asking for help simply means: “I'm overwhelmed or too close to this conflict, or I don't know the right skills to use.”

If you are comfortable going it alone, tabs like “Communication and “Conflictwill help you solve conflicts.  

If you want help, this tab and the next "Your Options" discuss why some procedures work better in certain circumstances. You rarely hear or see this information since most consultants market one procedure like mediation or litigation. I'm a little different, and I hope this information opens options so you choose wisely those tools that work best for a given situation.

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Training vs. Other Interventions

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When someone calls about training, I am tempted to ask why because I suspect they are in trouble and asking for training feels less risky than hiring a conflict coach, mediator, or dialog facilitator.    

Training starts a learning curve, but the impact is diffuse. Good training legitimates and raises awareness. But, skill development and certainly mastering a skill requires repetition, mentoring and time. So, if creating awareness is a goal and no more, training is an excellent option and often a first step.  

Mediation, a dialog, facilitated planning or conflict coaching:

- clear up impediments to change.

- put the learning curve on steroids, and

- lock in "next steps" actions.  

Collaborative vs Competitive Approaches

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Arbitration, litigation and war typically address past grievances and exact damage on people.  None of the three support healthy future relationships. Certainly litigation, and to a lesser extent arbitration, focus on legal definitions of issues. Herrman Group does not provide these services. I happily recommend that callers seek legal advice if legal issues define a conflict (e.g., a family was experiencing family problems, but their adult child had a court date regarding drug possession. I recommended several good attorneys.).  

Where people want to build or maintain a relationship (e.g., within a family, business, congregation or neighborhood) and legal issues suggest an attorney get involved, I recommend first seeking legal advice and then coming back to either mediation or conflict coaching.  

Where non-legal issues drive a conflict and people want to maintain a connection to others involved, I explore mediation, conflict coaching or various forms of facilitation.

Coaching vs. Group Work

Mediation and any form of facilitation assume two or more people will discuss their conflict. Mediation and facilitation also support problem solving among several hundred people. However, someone might seek my help and not want to talk to others involved in a conflict. This form of assistance is called conflict coaching.


Peggy maintains a private practice in Athens, GA, serving north Georgia, while also traveling across North America and internationally to help clients, conduct training and for speaking engagements. North American and international coaching clients have access by phone or Skype. Peggy can be reached at, by phone (706.207.1490), or use the “contact” form to make an appointment for an initial chat. Half hour initial inquiries are free (a $75 value). Thanks for coming to “ Conflict Solved: Doc Peg is IN.” Follow me on Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIN for daily reflections and hip-pocket tips.

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