"the quality of our lives depends not on whether or not we have conflicts, but
on how we respond to them" - Thomas Crum
Mediation is designed to help people to resolve their own dispute. A mediator cannot impose a solution, but they do help shape the settlement by altering the dynamics, offering suggestions, and assisting with communication. Think of it as cooperative bargaining, or a guided negotiation. There are many benefits such as, settlements and discussions remain private; it is efficient, cost-effective and flexible; you retain control of what happens; and you have an opportunity to express your point of view.
Workplace investigators gather information and establish the merits of complaints. The investigation occurs after a formal complaint has been filed by an employee - which may include complaints about workplace misconduct, harassment, discrimination or bullying. Investigations determine whether conduct violates organizational, professional and legal standards. We document the evidence, write reports, make decisions and recommendations based on justice principles.
Arbitration is a process where a neutral party takes into account the arguments of both sides, including evidence provided and makes a binding settlement decision, similar to a trial. However arbitration is less formal, more efficient, convenient and flexible, since the parties involved choose the arbitrator and do not have to follow the schedule of the court. It can be used alone, in person or with evidence only, and can also be part of an alternative process with mediation (Med-Arb), where Arbitration is used if mediation talks break down.
HI, I'M SHELLY MCLAUGHLIN
I have always been innately curious about the world around me. I love to research and learn, looking at problems and figuring out potential solutions or opportunities. I worked in the investment industry where I enjoyed analysing and making investment decisions, as well as working with clients. However, once I began a family with my husband Vince, we realized that a big city was not where we wanted to live and so we moved across the country to the ideal place for all of us. Initially, I focused primarily on my children and volunteering in our community, while continuing my education - investigating avenues other than economics and finance, and I discovered the field of conflict resolution. It genuinely changed my life to discover a way of resolving things that can work for both sides. A win-win solution, which generally is quite different from the investment world I was used to. Since that time, over the past 15 years, I have become a chartered mediator, restorative justice facilitator, divorce financial analyst and qualified arbitrator, with additional training in Med-Arb and workplace investigations.
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"I found Shelly to be warm, empathetic, compassionate, yet confident and unshaken with challenging clients. She is easy for clients to talk to and excellent to work with. She listened to the client, asked questions, confirmed responses and allowed the client to make her own decisions. She has excellent knowledge of the subject matter law and policy, and excellent communication skills." - Workers Advisor Officer, relating to a Prohibited action complaint mediation
"While separation and divorce are difficult enough, Shelly provided me with an easy process to finalize my divorce in about 3 months time. What stands out for Shelly is that she guided me through a process where I felt overwhelmed and uninformed. Shelly has the unique ability to adapt to your needs putting the clients first at all times. She displayed the patience I needed, expertise and knowledge of the subject matter and made it so easy to move forward in the least intrusive manner. She is a kind, caring and understanding advocate for any and all parties involved and made herself available even in short notice when required. In essence, Shelly helped turn a chaotic time into a relatively seamless ending where both parties left feeling validated and fairly treated, all at a reasonable cost vs the costs of lawyers and legal channels." - Client relating to separating assets and debts, and filing for divorce
"My company used Shelly's services during a period of transition for us. She employed a very collaborative style, with a focus on solutions and employed direct, but fair communication. I was particularly impressed with how she gathered relevant information and was fully prepared in advance. She maintained a calm demeanour and ensured all parties were equal participants in the process without bias. Perhaps the most appropriate comment is that we did not feel we were being 'mediated' into someone else's solution, but rather assisted in reaching our own solution. She was able to identify the core issues, and conduct the mediation in a calm and genuinely patient and empathetic manner" - Small business owner, relating to a workplace dispute