The Minnesota Bureau of Mediation Services offers technical support training in a variety of area. Broadly speaking, there are two types of courses. First, there are three courses entailing at least one full day each of instruction and practical exercises. These courses are skill-building in nature and are integral parts of BMS's cooperative programs. No training sessions are currently scheduled.

2014 Twin City Area Labor Management Council Training and Application (PDF Document)

Conflict Resolution

This is a program which helps participants recognize, analyze, and resolve personal conflict. The seminar is part of the work-site labor-management committee program for committees needing training. It can also be presented as a stand-alone session for any interested parties. Topics include the nature and types of conflict, communications problems, self-analysis of employees for resolving conflict, and demonstrating a process to resolve conflict using the interest-based problem solving process.

Interest-Based Collective Bargaining

This training consists of two sessions. The first is a two to three hour overview and exploratory session presented to bargaining teams or other interested parties. It explains the changes entailed in moving to interest-based collective bargaining and the commitments attendant to it. The second session is a full day of preparation for interest-based bargaining.

Work-Site Labor-Management Committees

This training consists of three sessions. The first two are overview and exploratory. They assess the labor-relations climate and the attitude of each party towards collective decision-making. Both parties are asked to decide if they wish to continue with the work-site labor-management committee process. The third session, Committee Effectiveness Training, is a full day of training to prepare for the introduction of joint decision making in an organization. The training includes presentation and practical exercises with emphasis on communication, problem solving, and consensus decision making.

Additional training courses

The second group of training courses consists of presentations on a number of topics in the Minnesota labor-relations area. The presentations are designed to provide state-of-the-art information for interested groups on a scheduled or as-requested bases. The presentations include:

Basic Labor Relations and Conflict Resolution

This is a series of coordinated presentations or stand-alone modules intended to provide the audience with an understanding of the basic principles of labor relations and an awareness of elements of conflict resolution. The presentations cover: the MN PELRA, the Collective Bargaining Processes, Mediation Processes (Contract and/or Grievance), Contract Administration and Interpretation, Grievances, Grievance Arbitration, Intro to Conflict Resolution and Intro to Interest-Based Problem Solving. (1 1/2 - 2 days)

Mediation - Contract and Grievance

This presentation is designed to help negotiators and bargaining committees better understand and participate in the mediation process. Topics under the contract section include the petition process, requirements as they affect essential and non-essential groups, objectives and dynamics of mediation, expectations of the mediation and the participants, and technical areas such as certifications of impasses for interest arbitration. In the grievance section, topics include the identification of appropriate cases, how the process works, the benefits of grievance mediation and, as needed, provides case examples. (3 hours)

Strategies for Settling Grievances

This workshop focuses on analysis, preparation and communications as essentials for settling grievances. Topics covered include: a framework for discerning rights vs. interests, types of conflict, use of mediation and communication techniques. Case exercises will be included as a part of the presentation. (3 hours)

Minnesota Public Employment Labor Relations Act

This is an overview of the Minnesota public sector bargaining law. It reviews the historical basis and background of the law and current requirements including the establishment of a collective bargaining relationship, the rights and obligations of employees, employers, and employee organizations under law. It also covers the basics of collective bargaining administration under the law. (1 - 1 1/2 hours)

Negotiating Skills

This presentation focuses on the aspects of the development of communication skills and the ability to understand interests that lie behind conflicting positions. The presentation is designed to provide basic information regarding the essential communication skills of listening, feedback and persuasion and to introduce to interest-based problem solving/negotiations. (1 1/2 - 2 hours)

Overview of BMS Programs

This consists of a general review of the history and programs of the Bureau of Mediation Services, with specific information on mediation, representation, labor-management cooperation, alternative dispute resolution, and the arbitration referral process. The presentation is designed to provide an overall understanding of how the Bureau functions and to respond to discussion areas of interest to the audience. (1 - 1 1/2 hours)

Presenting Representation Cases

A basic "how-to" on presenting bargaining unit determination cases. It is designed to give both employee and employer representatives the details of the procedures to follow, how to present at a hearing and the basis for determination. This class is relevant for both new unit petitions and clarifications of existing units. (1 1/2 - 3 1/2 hours)

Safety LMC Briefing

This presentation is designed to provide basic information regarding the formation of Safety Labor-Management Committees. Specific information includes details of the law requiring the committees, types of topics the committees can cover and examples of successful committee work. General information about labor management committees is also included as a part of the program. (1 - 1 1/2 hours) (The development, training and facilitation of Safety LMC's is available through a program administered by the Minnesota Department of Labor and Industry in partnership with BMS.)

Contact:   Janet Johnson - 651-649-5423               

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