Conflict Coaching

Conflict Coaching is a confidential process that helps people examine conflict situations in a way that promotes their own learning and empowers them to approach and manage conflict more productively. It is a goal-oriented and future-focused process that concentrates on helping people reach their specific conflict engagement goals.

As an Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) process, Conflict Coaching tends to be applied in two ways: 1) to prepare people to engage more meaningfully in other ADR processes, or 2) as a stand-alone process that helps people to gain greater self-awareness and insight into how they approach and handle conflict.

During Conflict Coaching the Conflict Engagement Specialist (CES) focuses on four key areas: self-awareness, building a reflective practice, conflict analysis, and conflict engagement skills.

Through this process, the CES may help individuals to:
• Explore the details of a dispute that has already occurred.
• Consider the most appropriate strategies and approaches in managing a conflict that is currently in progress.
• Prepare for a one-on-one interaction, for example, a performance review, disciplinary conversation, or other situation that is expected to be challenging.
• Consider how to approach a situation that could escalate into an unnecessary argument.
• Prepare for presenting a topic to a group that is likely to engender adverse reactions.
• Talk out thoughts and feelings about a fractious situation.
• Examine the choices and solutions that may be feasible for resolving issues that are in dispute.
• Prepare for mediation or another process such as negotiation, arbitration, restorative justice, collaborative law, or group facilitation.


The CES develops, coordinates, and delivers programs and educational initiatives to all levels of the university community with the goal of promoting a healthy and culturally safe means of conflict resolution. The CES consults with administrative and unit leaders to assess the education needs specific to their units, and designs appropriate programs and interventions tailored to those needs.

For more information on Conflict Coaching and training opportunities, please contact the CES.