A few years ago, I was invited to mediate in a case where two female Consultants from an Acute Trust had fallen out. Both Consultants had been drafted in to help at a local hospice. There was a dispute about the handover process from one Consultant Sarah, to the other, Eva. Somehow, Eva who had just started her shift hadn’t registered that 67-year old Mr. Smith was allergic to morphine despite his notes indicating this.
Sleep deprivation is affecting an increasing number of people who are embroiled in conflict. I recently asked 72 people who had been engaged in the process of workplace mediation in the NHS on a one-to-one or team basis about the impact of conflict on their sleep. An overwhelming number of 64 commented that their sleep had been affected in a moderate or significant way. One person from the North chose to use his periods of insomnia to send emails to colleagues at 3.00am voicing his discontent with how he felt he had been treated. The business case for workplace mediation in the NHS has suddenly been bolstered.
During the summer of 2016, I trained to become a Practitioner of the Lumina Psychometric tool. A CEO has recently used the tool as part of a recruitment process and has been suitably impressed at how it helped him to make a better-informed appointment. Based on the ‘Big 5’ and the best of ‘Jung’, the Lumina tool is unique because it avoids stereotyping whilst communicating personal preferences using memorable colours. It is excellent for gaining an insight into how one might work effectively with others. Think Myers Briggs plus!
Before I get to the text about the main subject of this missive, a relatively new term emerged to the public this week. The term is ‘callous unemotional traits’. This is the term that psychiatrists give to a set of symptoms that they see in some children – children who go on to be over-represented in prison populations and sometimes, in extreme cases, become what we call ‘psychopaths’.
You will recall the Supreme Court’s decision in relation to Employment Tribunal fees two weeks ago. The Presidents of the Employment Tribunals in England and Scotland have today issued a Case Management Order.
I have been reading about talent and genius over the last month. Both the New Scientist and National Geographic magazines have focused on these themes recently. One of the most interesting aspects is that many of those we refer to as having huge talent or being a genius (e.g. Einstein, Edison, Newton) have many similarities. Men of European origin. The stereotypes endure. A study published by Science found that girls as young as age six, are less likely than boys to say that members of their gender are ‘really, really smart’. Even worse, the study found that girls act on that belief and begin to avoid activities said to be for children who are ‘really, really smart’.
About four years ago, I was invited by the Department for Business to think through the potential ramifications of reforming the Employment Tribunal Court service. This included the provision to speak to Acas prior to lodging a claim, and the introduction of tribunal fees. Yesterday, in one of the most significant employment law decisions for fifty years, we learned that the Supreme Court has ruled that Employment Tribunal fees are unlawful because they have the effect of preventing access to justice.