Happy New Year News

  • POSTED BY Melinda
  • Jan-13-2014

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Happy New Year News!

Did you know that even with wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, the first decade of the 21st century has seen the number of annual battle deaths in the world at its lowest ever in history? And if it doesn’t feel that way to you, the experts tell us that is probably because there is more information about wars in the media, rather than more wars themselves.

Stories about the ways people can collaborate and cooperate to get better outcomes peacefully clearly doesn’t sell papers, which regrettably also means that there are not a lot of examples or role models visible in our everyday lives. So if you want your organisation to operate that way, you need to make those skills and examples explicit, and in a way that your people can both understand and then use, to improve your business outcomes. That’s where we come in.

Our experienced MeWise team can create a powerful learning experience for your people, at your location and on your schedule, to make sure that these essential skills are explicit and operating in your organisation. In designing our programs we will consult with you to ensure that our materials are authentic and our learning experiences relevant for the challenges you are facing today.

MeWise provides custom designed skills development programs in:

Communication and Conflict Resolution:            

Communication and conflict containment skills are critical in all businesses, both internally and externally, where one broken link in the chain of relationships can have lasting business implications…

  • How to deal with difficult personalities
  • How to identify sources of conflict
  • How to stop conflict from escalating
  • How to intervene effectively and preserve workplace relationships


Interest based negotiation skills are essential when liquidity is reducing and contingency plans are necessary to deal with breached covenants and contractual variations…

  • How to turn positional (distributive) bargains into interest based (integrative) solutions
  • How to optimise relationships through the bargaining process
  • How to create options for mutual gain
  • How to negotiate wisely under pressure


Mediation skills are essential in an environment of “stretched human resources” where customer /supplier issues, project delays and contractual disputes are daily challenges…

  • How to facilitate better negotiation skills in those around you
  • How to open up conflicts and lead people to wiser solutions
  • Micro and macro mediation skills including: active listening, identifying issues, exploring interests, option generation, reality testing, reciprocal bargaining and crafting wise agreements.


In 2014 our team of expert consultants has grown to six and I’d like to introduce them to you:


Adjunct Professor Iyla Davies was admitted as a solicitor in 1984 and is currently the Head and Chief Executive of The Women’s College within the University of Queensland. She is an Adjunct Professor in the Faculty of Law at QUT and UQ, a Director of the Legal Aid Board Queensland and National President of University Colleges Australia. For over 20 years she was a law academic specializing in family law, dispute resolution and mediation. She has also held community leadership roles as the Queensland and National President of Relationships Australia and as a member of the Queensland Law Society’s Specialist Accreditation Board. Every dollar Iyla earns as a MeWise consultant goes into a scholarship fund for disadvantaged students to attend The Women’s College at UQ.


Jacki O’Mara is a solicitor who has worked in both the private and public sectors providing advice on policy development and dispute resolution processes. She has studied mediation and participatory processes at the Harvard Law School and has assisted with teaching and assessment in undergraduate and Masters level alternative dispute resolution and mediation courses at QUT. Jacki is committed to working with clients to ensure the benefits of effective negotiation and communication are achieved to significantly improve working relationships.


Linus Power has spent many years working in the fields of politics and government. He has extensive experience in working on large-scale projects involving diverse stakeholders, both throughout Australia and in PNG and Fiji. Linus has studied at the Harvard Kennedy School where he completed extensive studies in multiparty negotiation and conflict resolution and became a faculty teaching assistant in negotiation analysis.


Col McCowan OAM is a registered psychologist, teacher and counsellor. He is also the Director of Cromach Careers, an International Fellow of the UK-based National Institute of Career Education and Counselling (NICEC), and on the Editorial Board of the Australian Journal of Career Development (AJCD). He has worked extensively as a consultant for organisations such as UNICEF, UNDP and AusAID in Bhutan, Vietnam, Thailand and Oman and has also managed a wide range of projects addressing specific organisational issues which have included extensive staff development and capacity building.


Janne McCowan is an experienced teacher, having been the Principal of large primary schools in both city and rural areas, and is currently enrolled at Griffith University in a Research Masters investigating children who are disaffected learners. She is also a fully trained expert in the world renowned Behaviour Management Program promoted by William (Bill) Glasser from the USA, which focusses on training young people in the use of self-control in social situations. Janne has volunteered her services with primary schools in Bhutan since 2009, and assisted with our pro bono program there in 2013.                   

Until next time…

Professor Melinda Edwards,
Managing Director,  MeWise Pty Ltd.
 img_3     About the AuthorMelinda Edwards is an Author, Speaker and Social Entrepreneur. She can be found on twitter – @MelindaMeWise and on the web at www.mewise.com.au.