Building conflict competency*

As with complaints and conflict across all sectors, Local Government issues can escalate quickly; leading to the potential disruption of staff at many levels in the organisation.

When complaints and conflict escalate into major disputes they may also involve the broader community, courts and tribunals and the media.
There is a better way of handling these matters.

A leader in mediation, complaints handling and conflict resolution training is the Australian Commercial Disputes Centre (ACDC).

ACDC is a not-for-profit that has been focused on supporting best practice alternative dispute resolution training in Australia for over 20 years.

Resolving complaints, conflict and disputes before they get out of control builds community confidence in Local Government, minimises the potential for public relations damage and keeps staff focused on their core
business objectives.

By equipping staff with the right skills, many of these issues can be resolved before damage is done.

If they do escalate, finding the best team to resolve it is crucial.

“The best option for any organisation is to build internal capability to limit the escalation of conflicts,” said ACDC’s chief executive, Deborah Lockhart.

“Developing the right skills is good business sense.

“It enables your staff to get the issues resolved quickly and move on.”
ACDC’s courses build internal capability enabling mayors, councillors, managers, supervisors, and HR and OH&S specialists to effectively handle difficult issues as they arise.

The one-day ‘Conflict Resolution & Dispute Avoidance’ course is designed to develop participants’ skills in managing and minimising conflict in the workplace.

For customer-facing staff, this can be supplemented with the one-day ‘Complaints Handling’ course to learn how to best resolve a complaint quickly and retain the goodwill of your valued customers.

ACDC’s two-day ‘Facilitating Difficult Discussions’ course empowers participants to tackle crucial talks and difficult discussions.

ACDC also offers a five-day Mediation Training course.

Courses are held at ACDC’s headquarters in Sydney or at the local government premises.

The Training Manager, Lynne Richards, says in- house courses offer a number of advantages.

“They allow participants to discuss specific organisational issues with their peers, and put more emphasis on those elements of the training that are particular to an organisation’s needs.”

For more information, go to

*Copy supplied by Australian Commercial Disputes Centre