Archives for January 2019

Trending Topics on the IRC Website

Stephanie Noel, Queen's IRC DirectorA new and exciting year has begun, and I hope that you are off to a good start. As the Director, it is a good time for me to review what we did in 2018 and where we are going in 2019.

One of the ways I do this is to take a look at the popular articles on our website, and review which topics people are engaging with the most to ensure that these trends are representative of the programming that we are offering.

Last year we introduced a Workplace Restoration program, and I am pleased to see that three of the top four articles we released last year were about workplace restoration. This is clearly a hot topic that many organizations are dealing with right now.

Among the other top articles on our website (new and old) are topics that we cover in our Labour Relations Foundations program – from collective bargaining to fact-finding, to understanding Canadian labour law in the #metoo era.

Rounding out our top new articles list are pieces on conflict resolution and dealing with difficult behaviours in the workplace. These topics are addressed in our Strategies for Workplace Conflicts program.

Below I have highlighted the top 6 new articles we published in 2018.

4 Steps to Fix a Toxic Workplace
Cathy Sheldrick, Queen’s IRC Sales and Marketing Coordinator
How do you fix a hostile workplace after a strike, merger or other polarizing event? How do you create a healthy workplace after a harassment or grievance investigation? It can be difficult to rebuild the trust that has been lost between members of a team or in leadership, or both. But, according to Anne Grant, a Queen’s IRC facilitator and workplace restoration specialist, you have to bring people back to a joint vision of what the workplace should be.

Workplace Harassment After #MeToo
Deborah Hudson, Lawyer, Turnpenney Milne LLP
On October 5, 2017, the New York Times published an article detailing serious sexual harassment allegations against famous Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein. Three days later, his company’s Board of Directors terminated his employment effective immediately. In this context, actress Alyssa Milano took to Twitter, encouraging all women who have been sexually harassed or assaulted to change their status to “Me Too” (a hashtag originally coined by activist Tarana Burke) in order to give people a sense of the magnitude of the problem. Since then, “Me Too” hashtags spread virally across the world’s social media accounts, having reportedly been posted or commented on millions of times.

Putting Humpty Dumpty Back Together Again – Restoring Teams After Workplace Investigations
Ronald Pizzo, Labour Lawyer, Pink Larkin
A workplace investigation will not repair dysfunctional workplace relationships. A workplace investigation neither builds bridges, nor resolves interpersonal conflict. In fact, an investigation may make a difficult work environment even more difficult. So how do we put Humpty Dumpty back together again, if all the King’s horses and all the King’s people could not?

Workplace Restoration Q&A with Anne Grant
Cathy Sheldrick, Queen’s IRC Sales and Marketing Coordinator
Queen’s IRC sat down with Anne Grant, the facilitator for our new Workplace Restoration program, to find out more about the topic and the program. In the interview, Anne shares her experience in workplace restorations, including the surprises she’s had along the way. She gives some insight into what makes workplaces toxic and how this program will help organizations that are experiencing disruptions like prolonged conflicts, increased harassment or grievance claims, leadership issues, strikes, investigations or significant organizational changes.

Dealing with Difficult Behaviours (Rather Than Difficult People)
Kari Boyle, Queen’s IRC Facilitator
In the Queen’s IRC Strategies for Workplace Conflicts course, we start by asking participants what they would particularly like help with in their workplace. A common response is “difficult / high conflict people”. However you define it, this is a huge challenge in today’s workplace and, unless it is handled well, it takes significant time, energy and expertise away from the work to be done.

3 Bad Habits that Impede Successful Conflict Resolution in the Workplace
Joan Sabott, Queen’s IRC Facilitator
A habit can be defined as a “usual manner of behavior.” But what I know about conflict is that there is often nothing “usual” about it. What happens to those of us who support others in conflict is that we tend to reach for the same set of tools each time, although we often are trying to solve very different problems. Even with the best of intentions, these habits can result in frustration, shallow or even bad resolutions, and won’t meet the needs of the people in conflict. Here are some common habits when dealing with conflict and what can be done to overcome them.

If there’s a hot topic that you would like to see an article about, let us know! Contact us at

Queen’s IRC Spring 2019-Spring 2020 Program Planner

We are pleased to announce our Spring 2019-Spring 2020 Program Planner is ready to be downloaded. It details all of our foundational and advanced programs and our certificate series.

Download our Spring 2019-Spring 2020 Program Planner now!

Download Brochure What’s inside:

  • Program dates, locations and fees
  • Detailed description of our entire program lineup
  • The Human Resources & Labour Relations Certificate Roadmaps
  • Information about creating a custom program for your organization
  • 18-Month program calendar

Check out our new program planner: Download

Director’s Note – January 2019

What Does Employee Engagement Mean to You?

Stephanie NoelLeaders build great teams by combining the talents of many to achieve shared goals. To do that, they need to define the core skills required to facilitate high performance, and design a collaborative, community-minded environment that gives people the space to excel. Our programs are designed to nurture those skills and develop leaders at all levels of your organization.

At the IRC, we believe that employee engagement begins with the commitment of strong leaders who believe in creating an organizational culture that fosters healthy relationships, encourages diversity of thought and maximizes opportunities for collaboration and multidisciplinary solutions. That vision flows through the many programs that you’ll find in our Spring 2019-Spring 2020 Program Planner.

Our program participants are constantly telling us about how the IRC team reflects this culture, working together to provide an exceptional learning experience. So it will be no surprise to many of you that they were recently recognized for their efforts with a Queen’s University Special Recognition for Staff Award (Team), awarded to individuals and teams for consistently providing outstanding contributions to the learning and working environment at Queen’s. They are indeed a special group, and I’m very proud of their accomplishments.

Are you ready to ramp up employee engagement and team performance at your workplace? Have a look through our Program Planner to find the programs to help propel you and your organization to the next level.

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