Dispute Management

This is how The DARP can help you manage your dispute:

Using escalating resolution

The most efficient and cost effective way of dealing with disputes is to deal with them early and personally. The people involved at the start need the confidence and authority to work out the solutions. The least efficient and most costly way is to polarise the dispute by involving lawyers.

Escalating resolution means starting with the individuals, if they cannot sort the problem then the next stage is to involve more senior management in order to attempt collaboration over settlement. If that doesn’t work then involve an independent third party such as a facilitator to help find a resolution.Beyond that stage the means of resolution moves out of the individual’s control and to a third party (adjudicator, arbitrator, expert or judge) who will imposes their finding. The DARP helps businesses avoid this final stage so the business retain control of the process, the outcome and therefore the costs.

Involving neutral third parties

Facilitation is an effective means of resolving differences without losing control of the issues, the time, the cost and the outcome.

If a resolution is not achieved lawyers often become involved and the dispute becomes formalised. It maybe that a mediation is possible before or after the dispute has been formalised and at any such mediation the mediator will use a more structured process to help resolve difficulties that have grown into a dispute. This is usually achieved in a single day and the parties usually reach a binding settlement. The mediator helps them reach their solution but does not impose one.

The DARP can provide its facilitation services in any dispute and its consultants are accredited commercial and workplace mediators.

Preparing a persuasive case

Once problems go beyond the discussion and facilitation stage, they inevitable enter a more formal, often legal process. Time needs to be spent on assessing risk, exploring the strengths and weaknesses, reviewing the various possible outcomes, estimating the time cost of management, experts and advisors and deciding on the process that will best achieve resolution.

The DARP have the specific knowledge and skills to provide cost-effective advice in all these areas and to assist preparing a persuasive case for settlement discussions.

Finding co-operative solutions

The experience of The DARP demonstrates that finding co-operative solutions (working with the other parties not against them) yields the best outcomes. Understanding each other’s needs (not wants) and finding ways of meeting them, where possible, will always result in the best deals.

In all negotiations The DARP focus on the collaborative not adversarial approach as this is better for the business in terms of costs, time and risk.

Retaining key business relationships

A damaging side effect of being in dispute (whether this is within your business or involving a third party) is the effect it has on valuable working commercial relationships. An important benefit of direct negotiation, facilitation or mediation is that fractured relationships can be repaired, or at least the process of repairing may be started. Parties are often so pleased to have achieved a settlement and so relieved that the dispute is in the past that they can get on with their business again and therefore working together again becomes possible. This never happens when disputes are determined by the court system.

Even if a solution is not achieved, working in a collaborative process such as facilitation or mediation can mean that the parties are able to disagree well, leaving no residual bitterness and although not resolved an end is achieved without the need of going through the costly and time-consuming court process.

The DARP can help businesses manage their disputes and to achieve a time efficient outcome thereby saving the business costs and potential future commercial relationships and opportunities.