My Resource List

In no particular order of preference, these are the publications I find most helpful as resource material for my work:

Workplace Conflict Management and Conflict Resolution

1. RUNDE, Craig E. and FLANAGAN, Tim A. Developing Your Conflict Competence – A Hands-On Guide for Leaders, Managers, Facilitators, and Teams.

From The Centre for Creative Leadership comes this wonderfully practical book with a really fulsome discussion, and exercises, on these topics:

  • Cognitive Aspects of Conflict
  • The Emotional Side of Conflict
  • Engaging Conflict Constructively
  • Team Conflict Competence
  • Organizational Conflict Competence

And this dedication:  “For all those challenged by conflict (pretty much everyone in the world).  May you find new ways to make the best out of differences!”

2. SHEAROUSE, Susan H.  Conflict 101 – A Manager’s Guide to Resolving Problems So Everyone Can Get Back to Work.

From the American Management Association (AMACOM), Susan Shearouse has put together a comprehensive analysis of conflict in a very organized and practical way, with real life examples and experiences.  My big ‘take-away’ from this book is how we should see conflict as an opportunity for positive change.  Susan says, “Consider this: Identify a conflict you have been a part of or witnessed that resulted in growth or progress.” We can probably all find examples in our workplace and in our personal lives.

3. FISHER, Roger and URY, William.  Getting to YES – Negotiating Agreement Without Giving In.

This International Bestseller, first published in 1981, remains the touchstone for principled negotiation.  The National Institute for Dispute Resolution Forum says it all, I think:
“Getting to YES has an unrivaled place in the literature of dispute resolution. No other book in the field comes close to its impact on the way practitioners, teachers, researchers, and the public approach negotiation.”

4. CLOKE, Kenneth and GOLDSMITH, Joan.  Resolving Conflicts at Work – Ten Strategies For Everyone On The Job.

I love this book!  Quoting from the Introduction:
By working with each [of the 10] strategy, you will be able to improve your ability to confront, embrace, struggle with, and resolve disputes in your own way.  As you investigate each strategy, we provide you with detailed suggestions on how to think about, practice and redesign it to meet your needs.”

5. THOMPSON, George J. and JENKINS, Jerry B. Verbal Judo – The Gentle Art of Persuasion.

This book has been one of my favourites for many years.  George Thompson’s Verbal Judo is used, “to train cops how to use their mouths instead of their nightsticks and guns”.  In the dedication, George writes:
”To all who, like me, could have used this training twenty years ago to help end the number one form of abuse in society – verbal abuse.”
I particularly like Chapter 6 – Eleven Things Never to Say to Anyone (And How to Respond If Some Idiot Says Them to You).

6. BRINKMAN, Dr. Rick  and KIRSCHNER, Dr. Rick. Dealing With People You Can’t Stand – How to Bring Out the Best in People at Their Worst.

I would have hoped that the authors, both PhDs in the field of human interaction, should understand one of the first rules of conflict resolution: separating the person from the behaviour.  So, a more appropriate title would have been “Dealing with Behaviours You Can’t Stand”.  I’m not sure that underlining the word ‘with’ helps much with the context.
Nevertheless, this book is full of really good stuff.  It’s a bestselling guide teaching you:

  • How to identify the 10 most unwanted behaviours (see!) and how to deal with each of them.
  • How difficult people think, what they fear, and why they act the way they do.
  • How to be persuasive and use your influence.
  • How to cultivate “take charge” skills that turn conflict into cooperation.

7. The Social Styles Handbook – Adapt Your Style to Win Trust

This book, with a focus on Emotional Intelligence, describes the four typical social styles: Analytical, Driver, Amiable, and Expressive.
In the Forward, Larry Wilson (Wilson Learning Centre) says, “After you’ve read and applied The Social Styles Handbook, you’ll see relationships improve and be more fulfilling, and successes come more easily.  If those rewards match your expectations, you won’t be disappointed.  You’ve already won!”.
I think he’s right.

8. Sharone Bar-David, Trust Your Canary - Every Leader's Guide to Taming Workplace Incivility

I was first introduced to Sharone Bar-David through her January 2012 article in the HR Reporter with the headline queston, "Do you have your RHB designation?" (RHB standing for 'Real Human Being').

In this book, Trust Your Canary, she introduces an intersting analogy: like canaries used in mines to detect toxicity, you should rely on your own 'inner canary' to discern when behaviours in the workplace cross the line of civil interaction. She provides some really helpful and practical tips for how to deal with workplace incivility. Workplace incivility is a concern that managers are sharing with me more frequently - a trend that's somewhat disturbing, actually.

Management and Leadership

1. BLANCHARD, Ken, and JOHNSON, Spencer.The One-Minute Manager

The multi-million dollar best seller from the Blanchard Companies, an international management training and consulting firm that Ken Blanchard and his wife Dr. Marjorie Blanchard founded in 1979 in San Diego. This book, and the others from the Blanchard Companies with a variety of co-authors, is in a storytelling style with great impact and memorable learning points.

2. BLANCHARD, Ken with ZIGARMI, Patricia and Drea. Leadership and the One Minute Manager - Increasing Effectiveness Through Situational Leadership.

I was introduced to Situational Leadership, a registered training model from the Blanchard Companies, in a 1981 workshop. After a great deal of study prior to that in organizational behavior, being introduced to motivational theories, leadership styles, and management models, the lights suddenly went on. Situtational leaders adopt a leadership style according to the 'situation', hence the name. And it's dead simple. The leader assesses only two factors: the competence and the commitment of the follower for a particular task or project, and decides what amount of direction, coaching, supporting or delegating to apply.

Access to Information and Protection of Privacy

1. FLAHERTY, David H. Protecting Privacy in Surveillance Societies:the Federal Republic of Germany, Sweden, France, Canada, and the United States. 1989 (the University of North Carolina Press)

2. DRAPEAU, Colonel Michel W. and RACICOT, Marc-Aurele. The Complete Annotated Guide to Federal Access to Information. 2002 (Toronto, Canada: Carswell Publishers 2001)

Fairness Monitor

1. WORTHINGTON, Robert C. Desktop Guide to Procurement Law

To me, this is the 'go-to' text for procurement law in Canada. Published by LexisNexis.