Managing Conflict and Mediation

Wednesday, May 01, 2013 (8:30 AM - 10:00 AM)

Approved for 1.5 Recertification Credits

There are essentially three stages of conflict management relevant for the Human Resource professional.  Each has different purposes and goals. The first stage is during employment.  There are various obligations to investigate employee claims and take prompt remedial action if workplace misconduct is established.  The primary function here can be judicial in nature rather than focused on mediating the dispute. The second stage generally is post-employment and begins with a claim of discrimination before the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (“EEOC”).  The EEOC has a well established mediation program for resolving these claims.  Resolution at this stage can often be premature. Finally, a legal claim can result in a lawsuit.  The local federal court has a well established and effective mandatory Alternative Dispute Resolution program.  Mediation often is effective and successful at this level.

Learning Objectives:

  • Employment Mediation Goal – One size does not fit all.
  • EEOC Mediation Option – Not so much.
  • Federal Court Alternative Dispute Resolution – Oasis in the desert.


Speaker, Robert F. Prorok, Director Cohen & Grigsby, As a Director in the firm's Labor and Employment Group, Bob represents employers in a full range of legal matters in court, before government agencies, before arbitrators, and during collective bargaining. Bob is a certified mediator, early neutral evaluator and arbitrator for the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania and also a member of the firm's Alternative Dispute Resolution team. 

He represents employers in labor and employment litigation matters, primarily before various federal and state courts, federal and state agencies, national and state labor relations boards and labor arbitrators. He also represents employers in collective bargaining negotiations and counsels employers on a full range of employment issues including, but not limited to, force reductions, legal compliance, and policy implementation. Prior to joining Cohen & Grigsby, Bob was a Partner at Reed Smith in its Pittsburgh office.

Speaker, Phyllis G. Hartman, SPHR, President, PGHR Consulting, Inc., in Pittsburgh, PA, has 25 years in HR. Phyllis is a member of SHRM’s Ethics and CSRS Panel and an A-Team Government Affairs Captain. She’s spoken at the SHRM Annual Conference; PA, Utah, Vermont and Virginia SHRM programs, SHRM Student conferences and PHRA conferences as well as dental study clubs, chambers of commerce, and the Federal Drug Czar’s office.

PGHR provides HR consulting services for small to midsized organizations in non-profit and for-profit sectors including manufacturing, healthcare, and retail.

Phyllis has an MS in HR Management from La Roche College, where she currently teaches in the HR Graduate program, and a BSEd from Edinboro State University.  She holds an SPHR and has been certified since 1990.

Phyllis is a 2013 recipient of a Distinguished Alumni Award from LaRoche College.

Phyllis has written whitepapers, book chapters, and articles and co-authored Never Get Lost Again: Navigating Your HR Career, published by SHRM. She serves as Vice Chair on the Board of Trustees of the Homeless Children’s Education Fund.

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