Innovative Solutions Case Studies

The following case studies illustrate our solutions-focused approach:

Mediation

The Challenge:
Upon refusing to engage in an intimate relationship with her boss, a sales person in a retail organization was terminated. She filed a human rights complaint alleging sexual harassment and sexual discrimination, and a wrongful dismissal action.

The Solution:
In an effort to resolve the situation quickly, Janice Rubin was engaged by both parties as a mediator. Although sexual harassment cases are fraught with emotion, making them notoriously difficult to mediate, Janice achieved a resolution in just one day. The employee received a settlement, and both parties agreed no further action was necessary. The matter was dealt with privately and quickly, saving the employer and his organization embarrassment and expense.

Workplace Restoration

The Challenge:
Following a workplace investigation, an office employee at an Ontario manufacturing site of a global corporation was found to have engaged in an act of workplace violence against his co-workers. The employee was suspended and attended anger management courses. The employer wanted to return the employee to the workplace, but his co-workers were concerned about working with him again.

The Solution:
Cory Boyd worked with the employer to determine their expectations of the returning employee and his co-workers. He then communicated with the employee to discuss these expectations and some strategies that would allow him to meet them. They also worked together to prepare for a meeting between the employee and his co-workers to discuss his return to work. Cory facilitated a meeting that allowed the co-workers to share their concerns in a respectful manner and the employee to respond and apologize for his past behaviour. Together the parties agreed to a plan that would allow the employee to identify and diffuse tension before it escalated into inappropriate behaviour.

Training - Avoiding Overtime Liability

The Challenge:
A large employer struggled to clearly identify the rules applying to overtime. After a conversation with Christine Thomlinson it was clear other legal issues were presenting problems for their human resource managers. But, how could they get their managers up to speed on these critical legal issues? And how could the necessary training fit into the 90-minute blocks of time the managers had available in their schedule?

The Solution:
Christine designed 90-minute training modules to address each of the relevant legal issues. The training program was intended to help managers identify situations they could handle themselves and those requiring legal support. Christine recommended the client use their legal budget for this training, recognizing that the cost would be covered by the elimination of just one unnecessary legal file. The client agreed. All managers were then trained on the relevant legal issues in their workplace.

One-on-One Human Rights Remedial Coaching – The Bully Boss

The Challenge:
A high-performing, senior executive within the financial services sector repeatedly engaged in angry outbursts directed at subordinates. The organization investigated and found the executive had violated their Respect at Work policy. They didn’t want to terminate this high performer, but they knew the bad behaviour had to stop.

The Optimal Solution:
The financial services company sent the senior executive to Rubin Thomlinson for one-on-one human rights coaching. Janice Rubin met with the executive privately, in a non-confrontational way, educating him and alerting him to the potential legal consequences of his bad behaviour. Together, they reviewed specific company policy and more general high-risk behaviours in the workplace. They discussed what would happen should his behaviour continue and the consequent legal risk to the organization. The organization now has a record to rely on in the event the executive re-offends.

Training – AODA

The Challenge:
A Toronto-based employer in the real estate sector offers a variety of services to their customers and to third parties. They were unsure how the AODA Accessibility Standards for Customer Service applied to their organization and sought assistance in meeting the requirements of the Standards.

The Optimal Solution:
Cory Boyd met with several members of the Senior Management Team of the employer to identify the various customer service touch-points of the organization and any barriers to access that may exist. Cory prepared a policy and procedures that met the requirements of the Standards, but that were also tailored specifically to the work of the organization. He also developed a training program for the management and staff and delivered the training in sessions held at the employer’s workplace.