Training & Development

Bellingham Mediation & Consulting helps organizations, businesses and academic institutions through customized trainings and workshops on effective communication and conflict resolution, legally current workplace best practices, and diversity, equity and inclusion. For over 25 years Sheri Russell has worked with owners, directors and HR managers to identify desired goals and learning outcomes, and then design and delivering customized trainings to meet those goals and the specific experiences of each audience. Whether working with supervisors, employee work groups, students or other stakeholders, all trainings are highly informative and interactive.

After seeing her give a presentation at a SHRM meeting, I contracted Sheri to give a training on Discrimination and Harassment. I heard many positive comments from staff on her engaging and confident style, which really impressed me as well. For a topic that would normally be hard to make interesting, Sheri managed to keep everyone’s interest by keeping things relatable and involving the audience in quizzes, open-ended questions, conversation, and interactive participation. I found her to be very prepared and knowledgeable about the subject and the presentation was organized in a way that made sense for the group. Afterward, the session for managers/supervisors only, was more of a small group exercise that gave everyone the chance to share their concerns, and also for everyone to discuss possible scenarios. This section was especially helpful for the supervisory staff because it allowed for a very participant-centered group discussion.

I would highly recommend Sheri for workplace training and/or facilitating services, particularly if you’re looking for a collaborative and inclusive type of atmosphere. – HR Manager

Sheri specializes in creating customized trainings on the following topics:

Effective Workplace Communication and Conflict Resolution

The interactive and experiential training gives supervisors and employees essential tools to appropriately address and resolve conflicts and issues in the workplace, and includes the following components:

  • Understanding conflict – the good and the bad
  • Understanding the physiological side of conflict
  • Identifying your individual triggers and conflict style
  • Effective communication and conflict resolution components
  • Active listening
  • Giving and receiving communication
  • Identifying issues
  • Identifying underlying interests
  • Identifying common interests
  • Brainstorming Options – and the pros and cons of each option
  • Creating thorough plans and agreements that meet all interests
  • Activities and role plays throughout each stage of training

Discrimination and Harassment: Awareness, Prevention & Response

The course objectives are to increase knowledge and understanding of Discrimination, Harassment, Sexual Harassment, Retaliation, and to identify methods to address and resolve discrimination, harassment and retaliation complaints. The course covers the following components:

  • Reference to your company’s Discrimination and Harassment policy & procedures
  • Discrimination
  • Discriminatory harassment
  • Harassment
  • Sexual harassment
  • Same sex and third party harassment
  • Retaliation
  • Consensual relationships
  • Employer liability & responsibilities
  • Supervisor individual liability
  • What to do if you (a) believe you have been a victim of discrimination, harassment or retaliation; (b) accused of discrimination, harassment or retaliation; (c) a witness or co-worker; and (d) a supervisor.
  • Additional resources

Diversity, Equity & Inclusion Initiatives

This is a highly interactive and experiential workshop intended to educate and develop awareness of both cultural diversity and other forms of diversity personally and in the workplace. This multi-dimensional workshop includes several activities and the following components:

  • Workplace diversity in the 21st
  • Cultural diversity
  • Non-cultural based diversity
  • Diversity and the Law
  • Perceptions
  • Recruitment and retention
  • National Origin, Religion and Disability
  • Personal Awareness Assessment
  • Hidden Bias
  • Organizational Diversity Assessment
  • Tips for Supervisors

Managing Performance

Managing employees’ performance is one of the hardest tasks for supervisors. It is also one of the most essential. This workshop helps supervisors and HR managers appreciate and implement the foundational components of performance management as well as the legal principles and implications. From accurate job descriptions and vacancy advertisements, to probationary periods and progressive discipline, to annual performance evaluations and corrective action. This supervisor training outlines the elements, legal requirements and pitfalls of managing employees’ performance, including the following:

  • Job Description & Vacancy Advertisement
  • Probationary periods
  • Performance Expectations
  • Elements of an effective performance appraisal process
  • Legal Requirements
  • Documentation and Discussion
  • Giving Feedback that Changes Behavior
  • Discipline and Corrective Action
  • Pitfalls
  • Discussion with Human Resources
  • Checklists

Bellingham Mediation & Consulting also conducts individual and executive level performance evaluations.

Reasonable Disability Accommodations

This essential supervisor training covers all aspects of reasonable disability accommodations, including the following:

  • Americans with Disabilities Act
  • Definitions
  • What is protected, and what is not protected
  • Pregnancy
  • Alcoholism and Illegal Drug Use
  • Job Applicants
  • Essential Job Functions
  • Reasonable Accommodations and Examples
  • Factors to Consider
  • Difficult Issues:
    • Performance Suggest Disability but None Disclosed
    • Accommodation Needed but Not Disabled
  • Supervisor Obligations

Workplace Violence Awareness

Workplace violence is any act or threat of physical violence, harassment, intimidation, or other threatening disruptive behavior that occurs at or outside the workplace. It ranges from threats and verbal abuse to physical assaults and homicide. It can affect and involve employees, clients, customers and visitors. (OSHA Definition.) This workshop provides employees the tools to understand, recognize and respond to potential workplace violence, including the following:

  • Spectrum and elements of workplace violence
  • Sources and locations
  • Understanding predictability and self-awareness
  • Awareness of cues
  • Techniques to de-escalate
  • Personal safety
  • Workplace violence policies

Team Building

The team-building workshops are very experiential and are designed for specific team issues.Team-building workshops include:

  • Understanding team dynamics and the goal of the team/project
  • Individual style assessments – strengths, weaknesses and preferences
  • Team management profile – organizing teams for maximum effectiveness
  • Group activities – requiring cooperation (team work) and challenging assumptions
  • Training in effective communication and giving and receiving feedback
  • Effective meeting formats, agendas, expectations and accountability

Bellingham Mediation & Consulting maintains the utmost confidentiality with regard to all its cases and clients.