Resources & FAQ

Our conflict experts are noted scholars and practitioners:

Our conflict experts are noted scholars, authors and curriculum development designers as well as first-rate conflict practitioners. The following are some of the additional resources we can provide to help you improve your conflict coaching and dispute resolution practice.

Conflict Coaching Matters


Conflict Coaching: Conflict Management Strategies and Skills for the Individual

Conflict Coaching: Conflict Management Strategies and Skills for the Individual, by Tricia S. Jones and Ross Brinkert,is the best-selling book in the conflict coaching field. Conflict Coaching presents the conflict coaching matters model of conflict coaching with a variety of practice tips for using the CCM approach. It is written for practitioners in a range of disciplines including communication, alternative dispute resolution/conflict resolution, business, education, law, psychology, sociology, and social work. A valuable addition to this book is a CD with over 1,000 pages of worksheets and resource materials to help in your conflict coaching practice.

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Conflict Coaching Matters

Intercultural Communication: A Peacebuilding Perspective (available from Waveland Press August 2014)

Tricia Jones and her co-authors, Martin Remland, Anita Foeman, and Dolores Rafter-Arevalo, have contributed an exciting new model of intercultural communication competence from a peacebuilding perspective. For conflict practitioners dealing with issues of cultural conflict in interpersonal or social/organizational situations, this book provides valuable information on understanding and responding to intercultural conflict.

This book will be available to order from Wavelend in August 2014

Conflict Coaching Matters

Interpersonal Communication through the Lifespan

Interpersonal Communication through the Lifespan by Tricia S. Jones, Martin Remland, and Rebecca Sanford presents an overview of important communication skills and issues for building personal and professional success. Chapters particularly helpful for conflict practitioners focus on emotion and communication, conflict and communication, and emotional competence.

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Conflict Coaching Matters

Kids Working It Out: Stories and Strategies for Making Peace in Our Schools

Conflict educators will benefit from Kids Working It Out. This touching book that overviews effective conflict resolution education initiatives and tells the stories "in their own words" of students and educators who have found success with these efforts. Tricia Jones and Randy Compton's work makes these programs accessible and demonstrates the growing importance of developing social and emotional learning programs and conflict resolution education efforts in our schools.

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Conflict Coaching Matters

Forthcoming Books From Tricia S. Jones

The Heart of Conflict

Tricia S. Jones's forthcoming book, The Heart of Conflict (Sage, 2015), explains the role of emotion as a critical factor in how people identify conflict, orient to conflict and respond to conflict. Many of the books in the conflict coaching and conflict management field are not providing up-to-date discussion and application of how emotion (and its physical and psychological bases) are more important to human conflict than previously assumed. Social science and neuroscience have increasingly found that emotion is the driving force behind decision-making and moral judgments that escalate and perpetuate interpersonal and group conflict.

Positive psychology that focuses on emotion-driven behavior (e.g., Martin Seligman's Learning Optimism) is the fastest growing area of social psychology. And, social and emotional competence – the foundation of constructive conflict management – is a billion-dollar industry in corporate consulting due to the work of scholars like Daniel Goleman. Since the US leads the westernized industrial world in workplace aggression and bullying, workplace conflict practitioners are tasked with responding to workplace aggression and workplace bullying. Understanding the emotional drivers of these behaviors is critical in designing and delivering effective interventions.

Conflict Coaching Matters

Making Conflict Coaching Special: Peer Conflict Coaching for Special Education

Making Conflict Coaching Special: Peer Conflict Coaching for Special Education (forthcoming from ConflictCoachingMatters Press, February 2015) is a labor of love for author, Tricia S. Jones. As a mother of a child with special needs, she has adapted the CCM conflict coaching model to create a model of peer conflict coaching (parent to parent, educator to educator, administrator to administrator) for special education disputes. Parents, educators, and administrators involved in special education disputes understand how easily these conflicts can become destructive and escalate. First response prevention and intervention is critical to developing good relationships from the outset – a difficult task when parents can be anxious and confused and dedicated to getting the best for their child with special needs. for constructive conflict management. Peer conflict coaching, piloted with support from the Pennsylvania Department of Education, (see peer conflict coaching webinars and training materials on Training page), is one positive new tool to accomplish these goals.

Conflict Coaching Matters

Conflict Coaching: Expanding The P. I. E.

Conflict Coaching: Expanding the P. I. E. (forthcoming from ConflictCoachingMatters Press, June 2015) is the second level of practice-ready wisdom on using the CCM conflict coaching model. Building from the CCM model presented in Conflict Coaching: Conflict Management Strategies and Skills for the Individual, this book extends coaching process insights in the discussion of Power, Identity and Emotion issues (P. I. E.) in the Stage 2 (Exploring Perspectives) and Stage 3 (Crafting the Best Story) stages of CCM. The book also includes a new variety of Skills Development chapters.

Conflict Coaching Matters

Conflict Coaching: Wisdom and Innovation from the Field

This book is an edited volume (Tricia S. Jones & Cheryl Cutrona (Eds.) (ConflictCoachingMatters Press, March 2015) with contributions from leading scholars and coaches discussing the best practices of conflict coaching in a variety of contexts including higher education, community, workplace, affirmative action/EEO, military, government, environmental, family, and elder contexts. Brief chapters from renown experts discuss the utility and best application of coaching in those contexts.

An introductory section provides an overview of developments in the coaching field in terms of policy, organizations, research and models of practice. And, this section also presents a chapter on the similarities and differences between conflict coaching, executive coaching, and life coaching. Finally, the book ends with a "dialogue chapter" of the contributors addressing there opinions about the challenges facing the field in the upcoming decade.

Conflict Coaching Matters


Conflict Coaching Matters Videos

Conflict Coaching Matters has developed a series of professionally produced training videos for use in CCM trainings and webinars and for special coaching contexts (for example, peer conflict coaching in special education). These videos involve coaches demonstrating brief examples of each stage of the CCM model. The videos involve conflict coaching in the following contexts:

Higher Education
Special Education
Health care

We are in the process of developing delivery systems for these videos and will have those available by October, 2014. Please leave us a message in our "Contact" section if you are interested in learning more and receiving a catalog of video options once developed.

If you'd like to have a sense of the quality of the video productions, please click on our Promo video on the right side of the page. You can also learn from our videos during our webinars.

Frequently Asked Questions

The Comprehensive Conflict Coaching model emphasizes the importance of understanding a client's story about the conflict in order to help them work through it. A trained conflict coach helps clarify the client's present situation and supports the client in visioning a better future and developing skills to be able to make that future happen. The Comprehensive Conflict Coaching model that we use has the following elements: Preparatory Conversation; Stage 1: Discovering the Initial Story; Stage 2: Exploring Perspectives (Identity, Emotion and Power); Stage 3: Crafting the Best Story; Stage 4: Enacting the Best Story; and Parallel Process: Learning Assessment.
The CCM model is flexible in terms of number of sessions and length of sessions. What is important is that the conflict coaching process fits the needs of the client and her conflict. Usually, you want to have at least two sessions so that the client has time to apply some coaching insights outside the session before focusing on skill development for implementing solutions to the conflict. Four or more sessions are encouraged when the coach and client are working through complex conflict situations that involve polishing significant new client skills like negotiation. However, abbreviated versions of the CCM model have been developed for use in health care and workplace contexts. A “Brief Model” of conflict coaching can take as little as an hour – and still deliver real benefit for the effort.
Conflict coaching is useful in the very beginning of a conflict, during the conflict, and after the conflict. Conflict coaching can help prepare for an upcoming interaction and make a positive outcome more likely. Conflict coaches are most often involved in the middle of a conflict when the party realizes that they can benefit from a coach's support in better understanding and strategizing for the best response. Coaching is also helpful after a conflict has been "handled" as a way of identifying patterns of behavior that a party wants to prevent in the future.
Organizations often pay for the cost of individual conflict coaching services. In such cases, you should have a written agreement that clarifies information to be shared with the organizational sponsor. It could be as simple as the coach reporting that the client participated in a specific number of coaching sessions. Or it could involve the coach and client sharing specific conflict coaching content details with the organizational sponsor. A cardinal principle of conflict coaching is confidentiality and it is very important for the direct client (the party in the conflict receiving coaching) to have a complete understanding of whether or how information is reported to the indirect client (the organization or third party paying for the coaching sessions).
Example #1: Sam is talented in terms of analytical and numerical skills. Because of the considerable profits he made for his organization, Sam was promoted to a management position. Unfortunately, while Sam has mastered the technical side of business, he has trouble dealing with people and he has driven a number of promising and productive employees away. Sam found conflict coaching valuable for deciding the kind of leader he wanted to be and for being able to craft specific confrontation and collaboration conversations that he had to carryout with his team members.

Example #2: Maria is an idealist and chose her field of work in order to build bridges with colleagues and make a real difference in the lives of her clients. She recently felt walked on by certain colleagues and clients who were very competitive with her. Maria valued conflict coaching for helping her feel good about her core professional identity while also supporting her in developing assertive skills, including bargaining skills.

Example #3: Chris was tired of working with a difficult colleague, someone who may even be classified as a workplace bully. On the verge of leaving, Chris gave conflict coaching a try and was relieved to learn about a number of resources both inside and outside the organization for addressing the matter. Chris used conflict coaching to prioritize the use of other professional services as well as develop some key communication skills.
Conflict coaching is not appropriate when a potential client is unwilling to participate, is too distraught or angry to have a conversation, or if an organization wants to use conflict coaching as a pretext for an already determined employee termination. In the preparatory conversation that a coach has with a potential client, the conflict coach will discuss the readiness for coaching. And – it is ALWAYS the client's choice whether to move forward with a conflict coaching process.
Different conflict coaches may have different sub-specialties and backgrounds, such as mediators, dispute resolution professionals, human resources professionals, and communication specialists. Conflict Coaching Matters provides coaching, coach training, and coach certificate services that are based on a comprehensive base of research, theory, and experience about conflict. While there are no legal or professional regulations on who can use the title conflict coach, we feel strongly that a conflict coach should have appropriate education, training, and experience for the type of cases they are taking on and should clearly communicate this information to prospective clients.

People who have completed 5-days of the Conflict Coaching Matters conflict coaching training are eligible to become certified in the CCM model. The certificate is awarded based on a quality assessment of an audio and video recorded conflict coaching process submitted by a coach/certificate candidate. Assessors determine whether the candidate displayed overall competence in their application of the Comprehensive Conflict Coaching model. The awarding of the certificate cannot guarantee the quality of the coach-recipient's future work. But, the certificate attests to the fact that the coach has foundational skills and has demonstrated them successfully in a professional assessment.

Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) processes (like mediation and arbitration) developed so that individuals and organizations can handle conflicts more constructively and reduce negative impacts on the organization. Successful ADR resolves issues before they escalate and builds better relationships among disputants. Mediation involves a neutral or impartial third party facilitating a conversation between the parties in conflict to help them work through their conflict in a mutually agreeable manner. Conflict coaching is an ADR process that can function prior to, during, or after mediation. Conflict coaching may be especially appealing when one or both parties are uninterested in pursuing mediation. Conflict coaching is also different than most mediation formats in that the client can feel safe laying his or her cards on the table, develop communication skills, and take the perspectives of the coach into account.

Coaching covers a broad range of activities in which one person is giving advice to another for professional or personal benefit. For example, personal coaches, sometimes called life coaches, develop individuals' effectiveness across their entire lives and in a variety of situations. Executive coaches develop senior leaders by focusing on leadership style and fit with changing business and organizational needs. Conflict coaching combines a reflective and expert-based approach that is centered on supporting individuals through conflicts they are experiencing at work and/or at home.