Conflict Resolution Policy

See also: Conflict Resolution Procedures, Responding to Code of Conduct Violations.


DMG recognizes that conflicts occur in organizations for various reasons. If conflicts are identified and recognized promptly and treated appropriately, the knowledge gained can enrich and improve our organization.

We also recognize that an unaddressed conflict, whether because it is avoided or improperly handled, can escalate causing people harm and having a negative impact on the organization.

Prevention and early invention efforts are key to fostering collaboration and to maintaining a healthy and respectful creative and work environment.

The purpose of this policy is thus to provide an effective, consistently applied, and transparent method to address conflicts and disputes. Such issues may arise in relation to DMG functions, its governance, or the conduct of its directors, staff, members, and members of the public.

Applicable to: A complaint under this policy may be made verbally or in writing by any director, staff or member, or by any member of the public, noting that:

Type Policy
Conflict of interest complaint Conflict of Interest Policy
Staff complaints involving interpersonal issues Conflict Resolution Policy and applicable HR policies and procedures
Staff complaints involving compensation, performance, or other HR issues HR policies and procedures
Formal complaints of harassment or discrimination Harassment and Discrimination Policy
Formal complaints of workplace safety, harassment or violence Workplace Harassment Policy or Workplace Violence Policy and Program
Inter-organizational disputes Terms of agreement for the shared project

Directors, members and staff are obligated to comply with the DMG Conflict Resolution Policy and related by-laws and policies as a condition of membership or employment. The failure to cooperate with the DMG Conflict Resolution Policy may result in the undertaking of disciplinary procedures.

Guiding Principles

In-House Conflict Resolution

The skills and resources of DMG will be developed and used to resolve conflicts in a manner that is interest-based, understanding-based, facilitative, collaborative and fully participative whenever possible. Seeking external advice and expertise is recommended in cases of formal complaints.

Personal Responsibility and Engagement

All parties to a complaint will actively participate, and strive to achieve a collaborative resolution and outcome at the earliest possible stage of the process.


Information about a complaint will only be given to parties directly involved and to others on a need to know basis.


The parties will be provided clear and understandable reasons for decisions relating to complaints. All parties will be provided with updates during review processes.


Complaints will be dealt with promptly and resolved as quickly as possible.


Review of complaints will be fair, impartial and respectful, allowing all parties to have their perspectives heard.


Review of complaints will be thorough and as detailed as possible, based upon the information provided by the parties.

Accessible and User-Friendly

The process will be easily accessible and communicated to members. It is designed to be clear and as simple to follow as possible.

Training and Professional Development

The organization will ensure conflict resolution is a central part of annual board governance training and staff professional development, and set aside time and resources to do so.

Responsibility for Implementation

This policy respects the governance structure of DMG which provides that Operational and Educational activities are the responsibility of the Executive Director, and matters relating to Board policy, activities, decisions and governance are the responsibility of the Board of Directors.

Last revised: March 7, 2019