Conflict Resolution Guidelines
a.k.a. Tranformative Justice Guidelines
Enspiral's value resides in the people and the relationships that make up our inspiring, changemaking network. We collectively strive to foster an increasingly open, inclusive and caring culture. The Well Working Group will support this mission by developing network resources for constructive dialogue and co-working.
In this document you will find three suggested steps to take to safely and appropriately resolve conflict. Also included are support mechanisms if you need additional input to help resolve the conflict.
Note: If you currently feel unsafe in Enspiral's communication channels, please immediately e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you or someone you know is in immediate danger, seek local law enforcement.
We ask all Enspiral participants to recognize these network safety guidelines for resolving serious conflicts.
If you are in conflict with someone else consider taking these three steps:
1. Contemplate Conflict
- Take time to process experiences if you feel confused, overwhelmed or agitated.
- Note uncertainties and possible misunderstandings in your interactions, including cultural differences.
- Distinguish people's actions from your feelings about them. They're both important, but they're different.
- Distinguish disagreement from personal hostility. We're allowed to disagree, dissent and discuss.
- Review relevant documents andConflict Resolution Support.
If you've contemplated the experience and have decided it feels like it may be harassment or abuse, please consult our Harassment and Abuse Policy.
2. Invite Conversation
If you're unable to resolve a conflict on your own, invite conversation. The sooner the better.
- If you feel able and safe to, directly discuss your concerns with the person you are in conflict with.
- Otherwise, see Conflict Resolution Support.
- Consider your communication approach; Comms Guidelines might be helpful.
- Ensure a mutually agreeable time and place for conversation, including adequate privacy.
3. Develop a Plan
Foster inclusive dialogue by sharing ideas, asking clarifying questions, and responding to others' ideas.
- Identify personal wants and needs.
- Make offers or requests.
In complex conflicts, develop points of agreement to facilitate progress.
- Propose plans to treat conflict in a mutually satisfactory way.
- Mutually sign written plans in serious cases, or whenever desired.
- Follow up later to discuss progress.
Transformative Justice Support
Again, if you've contemplated the experience and have decided it feels like it may be harassment or abuse, please consult our Harassment and Abuse Policy.
Each of these support stages may be pursued separately or together.
How do I know when to enlist more support?
The time to escalate is when you've been trying to work at one level and you reach an impasse, both parties unable to compromise in any way.
For example, if you have a 1-1 meeting with reasonable, clear asks which become unmet requests, it would be at this point you might consider bringing a third party in to mediate.
There are four steps you might consider to reach a resolution, each step includes more people. The point is to resolve the conflict with as few people involved as possible.
1. Direct communication
Directly discuss your concerns with a conflicting person if you're comfortable doing that.
2. Private support
Talk privately to your Enspiral Steward(s) or trusted friends to help you resolve conflicts with other Enspiral participants. Make a plan together about what you're going to do.
3. Expanded dialogue
Enspiral participants may seek to informally resolve their conflicts by discussing them with mutually trusted Enspiral participants. This may be done either confidentially or openly.
For intense conflicts, Enspiral participants may request mediation meetings which are assigned to trained, in-network (orexternal) mediators.
Our expectations are that a mediator is suitably qualified, costs incurred will be negotiated directly with the people involved. We commit to hosting a recurring bucket and—at the Enspiral Foundation's discretion—the use of reserves.
Reporting Back / Accountabilities
Other useful materials
- Open Mediation Protocol
- Loomio's Conflict Resolution Process and resources
- AORTA - Conflict mediation in action
- AORTA - Conflict Resolution Worksheet
- Nonviolent Communication
- Codes of Conduct: When Being Excellent is Not Enough
- Geek Feminism wiki
- Buffer's 10 values
- The FOSDEM Conundrum
- Facilitation Guide for Effective Conflict Resolution
- "Manifesto of Being and Working Together" from #OurField and Future Farm Lab
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