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What's a
Two Minute Training?

Two Minute Training is a free, weekly column focusing on management communications and conflict resolution I began writing in October 2003.


The articles are short (I time them before sending them) and narrowly focused, so they're really useful as part of trainings, as weekly distributions to teams or departments, and for your own personal development.


And there are new articles in every section!


Click on the links below to find the full text, and then go to that specific tab for more articles on that topic.

And of course, let me know how you're using them.



New Additions

Please Just Listen   2.25MIN


"Every time we fill in the gaps of our understanding with information we already have, we preclude ourselves from learning something new.


Actually, there’s no “just” about it. Listening is often the hardest thing to do, if you really want to do it right. I once worked with a group in an organization that had become so polarized that the necessary work was done when...

When Emotions Take Over the Conversation  2.5MIN


“In all mediations, the key dynamic is respect for the needs, interests, and values each party demonstrates.”


So many wonderful advances are being made in neuroscience these days, that it’s hard to keep up with what is relevant to conflict resolution and mediation, but I have found...

Organizational Conflict

Empathy and Accommodation   2.75MIN


“Maybe this isn’t the same old dispute that can be solved in the same old way.”


A long time ago I knew a smart, funny, and immensely curious seven-year old who could use the word “albeit” in a sentence, correctly, but couldn’t get by in school because of ADHD. At that time we knew little about that condition, so we...

Management Communications

From Professional to Personal  2.5MIN


“First, there is The Donald (Trump)...”


He’s such a perfect example of how the professional can be reframed as personal, and the consequences of that reframing, that he’s hard to ignore even if...


Like so many other people, I was uncomfortable with disagreement and conflict, especially at work. I had a Ph.D. in communications and all the theory I needed, but few of the crucial skills and techniques  necessary to becoming an effective leader. I lost jobs because of this lack of skills.


And then I took my first mediation training. For me, it was transformative. In fact, it was an absolute revelation.


I knew that if I could move just three or four mediation techniques into the workplace, work would be so much more satisfying. 


And that has been my mission ever since -- to give people the skills and techniques of mediation for use in their own lives.


I hope the ideas in these articles serve you as well as they did me.


Have a wonderful, peaceful week.






Organizational Conflict 


Management Communications​


NOTE: Articles may fit into more than one topic, so be sure to check several sections for the article you need.

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Some Very Scary Statistics

Do You Really Want to Absorb These Costs?


In the United States, where only 57% of employees receive conflict resolution training, employees spend 2.8 hours per week dealing with conflict equating to approximately $359 billion in paid hours in 2008.


That’s a staggering cost for organizations to absorb. Surely the costs for all the conflict resolution and management communications training in the country wouldn’t equal that loss.


Some other important numbers you may want to know:

  • 85% of employees at all levels experience conflict to some degree, and 29% do so always or frequently.

  • 27% of employees have witnessed conflict morph into a personal attack.

  • 25% of employees say that avoidance of conflict resulted in sickness or absence from work.

  • 9% of employees saw conflict result in project failure.

  • 70% of employees see managing conflict as a “very” or “critically” important leadership skill.

  • 54% of employees think managers could deal with conflict more effectively if they addressed it more quickly.

  • 57% of U.S. employees have never received conflict management training although 95% of people who received such training said it had helped them.

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