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Solutions-based Approach to Resolving Disputes


Solutions-based Approach to Resolving Disputes

By , January 11, 2021

Director of Five Feathers Consulting, Nancy Peat, joins this week’s episode to discuss her work as a conflict mediator. In this role, she assists clients when they face communication issues that are having a negative impact on the business with no resolution. Her position is to provide logical, unbiased facilitation to create productive conversation to resolve issues in a financially effective and efficient way. Before mediation, Nancy’s main background was in financial services. She has more than 30 years working in management training, consultative advice, and accounting firms. She also worked in insurance and financial planning, dealing with businesses on unplanned successions. After a career transition, Nancy decided on mediation, as she had effectively been practicing it for years. She obtained her national accreditation in Mediation (NMAS) and started her business Five Feathers Consulting shortly after.

From experience, Nancy has found that family owned businesses seem to be the most interesting cases. This is mainly due to deeply personal relationships which make difficult discussions much more so. A further common theme with family-owned businesses Nancy has experienced consistently is sibling rivalry. During these mediations, she has found the interestingly, conflicts stem from grudges and events from childhood, which have transferred into the business environment. In these cases, Nancy has to gather every detail of information to ensure each party is content with the outcome. Despite people often seeking mediation to save on legal fees, the mediation itself starts to incur them. Nancy concludes this is mainly because her clients have never held frank conversations about the future of their business, and because they have waited too long to discuss it, this is why it becomes a dispute.


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Craig West

Craig West

Managing Director | Succession Plus

Craig West is a strategic accountant who has over 20 years’ experience advising business owners. His background as a CPA in public practice, provided invaluable experience in the key issues of concern to business owners. Following 6 years of study to gain two masters degrees, Craig focused on Capital Gains Tax (CGT) for business sales advising on strategic management of tax issues. This experience formed a very strong view that business owners (and often their advisers) were unprepared and unaware of the steps required to prepare a business for exit.

Craig now acts as a strategic mentor for mid-market business owners and has written four critically acclaimed books on employee incentives, succession planning, asset protection and exit strategies. Craig has conducted numerous seminars and keynote presentations throughout Australia & internationally, including adviser education programs for the Institute of Chartered Accountants and CPA Australia.

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