Workshops : NS Labour and Advanced Education, Conciliation Services


Whether a workplace has been unionized for a few days, a few years, or for as long as anyone can remember, CMS also has a suite of workshops available to assist the labour-management relationship. It is modular training, that can be taken as stand-alone pieces, or as part of a larger initiative.



Our three-hour communications module focuses on the communications process, common barriers to that process, the impact of attitudes on communications, and verbal and nonverbal communications cues. It provides tips for improving communications, and includes videos and exercises to teach and apply new skills, such as brainstorming, reframing, and barrier identification.


Conflict Management

Conflict is all around us. It impacts many workplaces and labour-management relationships negatively when it is not managed effectively. This day-long module explores the definition of and types of conflict, the causes of conflict and the costs and potential benefits of conflict. Much of the day is spent identifying individual conflict management styles and tools for managing and resolving conflict. With ample opportunity for practice and learning application this is an interactive program. You will leave this workshop with new knowledge and skills to help minimize the negative impacts of conflict in the workplace.


Relationship Development for Workplace Leaders (RDWL)

Note: this day-long workshop generally includes the Communications Module

Our Relationship Development for Workplace Leaders (RDWL) Program, brings leaders from both the union and management teams together for a full-day interactive workshop which includes videos and activities to enhance engagement. The program focuses on topics relevant to fostering a non-adversarial labour relations climate, promoting mutual respect and understanding, and developing and practicing related skills. The modules covered can be customized to meet the needs of the group. The standard offering includes an in-depth session on Communications Best Practices, the difference between Rights, Restrictions and Responsibilities under a Collective Agreement, and Joint Problem Solving.


Labour Management Committee (LMC) Best Practices

Part I

Our LMC Best Practices Workshop is a three-part program with the aim of assisting joint committees in maximizing their potential to be functional, effective and productive. We encourage participants to take parts one and two together where possible.

The first part of the program has a running time of 3 hours. It includes a presentation on the objectives and benefits of effective joint committees, success factors, potential pitfalls, and the roles of the parties. We then explore specific best practices as they relate to the make-up, the role and responsibilities of the chairperson, agenda, minutes, discussion and the decision-making process.

There is an assessment within the workshop that allows members to evaluate themselves and their committee to identify areas for growth. The session concludes with an appended version of our Communications training (if not previously completed).

Part II

The second portion of our LMC program is customized for the committee. It includes a facilitated discussion of what best practices from Part I the committee wishes to implement and how to go about it with the best chance of success.

Items of discussion may include:

  • Frequency, timing, length and location of LMC meetings
  • Who will chair meetings; single, joint, alternate, etc.?
  • Agenda and minutes - who develops and distributes the agenda and when? Who records decisions and actions (minutes)? How is this information circulated for review to LMC following meetings, and how are they made available to respective constituencies?
  • Review of Ground Rules / Terms of Reference that will ensure respectful and open dialogue focused on issues and not positions
  • Other items that are specific to the parties

This session may also include a discussion of committee and/or individual results from the self-assessment exercise completed in Part I, including the development of an action plan to address any items identified by the group.

Part III

After completing Parts I and II, a CMS representative can be made available to observe your labour-management committee in action, to assist in ensuring you follow the ground rules and terms of reference decided by consensus in Part II, to provide feedback, and/or provide chairing services.


Customized Training

If your workplace group has specific training needs that can help enhance workplace relationships, we want to help. We work with both parties to develop custom sessions, which can vary in length and topic to suit your need. Examples of sessions include (but are not limited to):

  • Interest-based conversations and negotiations;
  • Neutral processes;
  • Problem-solving; and
  • Consensus decision-making




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For questions or additional information, please contact Conciliation and Mediation Services.

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