Role of conciliator


“The conciliator induces the parties to a course of action�. His intervention in the dispute creates for the parties a situation different from the direct confrontation they had had before. The conciliator establishes for the parties a need to re-examine their positions in this new situation and to consider possible alternatives or options. The need to make a choice of possible options continues after his initial intervention; and depending on the shifting pressures on the parties he can sharpen or blunt the need to make a choice.

As a Discussion Leader:

As a discussion leader the conciliator reduces irrationality and antagonism between the parties. He guides them towards a problem-solving approach to their dispute; he ensures that they discuss their differences in as friendly a manner as possible; he helps them to analyze their problem, always striving to keep the analysis on rational ground; he identifies the elements of the problem, both for the parties’ benefit and for his own.

As a Safety Valve:

The conciliator places himself in the position of an alternative target when he feels that the parties are in an aggressive mood. By setting a substitute target, the parties can achieve an emotional release without direct and immediate damage to the negotiations.

As a Communication Link:

The conciliator fulfils an important function as a communication link between the parties: serving as a communication link may either constitute his main conciliatory effort or be a contribution to it. He not only works as a conduit through which messages relayed from one side to the other, are passed, but he also provides a thorough explanation and interprets the intention of the party.

As a Stimulator

Sensing the need for positive action, the conciliator can provide necessary impulse; he makes a concise statement, supplies some

date, gives a hint or suggestion. He crystallizes changes of opinions, in course of discussions, by intervening at the appropriate moment and giving such ideas a concrete form.

As an Adviser:

The conciliator tries to remove misunderstandings regarding the other’s position, intentions and capabilities. He tries to see that such misinterpretations do not occur and that each side thoroughly understands the others’ point of view obtains a picture of the opponent’s strength and realizes its own limitations and weaknesses.

As a Promoter of Collective Bargaining:

While intervening in a dispute, he is not only concerned with obtaining settlement, but often he assists and promotes collective bargaining and helps and guides the parties in the development of their relationship.

Thus, a conciliator has to play a wide variety of roles of roles. When a strike or lock-out is threatened it is his duty to advise the party concerned on the legality of the proposed action and to use all his powers of pursuing so that at least the action can be postponed while conciliation is going on. He makes all efforts to persuade the parties against violent or disorderly behavior in carrying out the proposed action which might lead to bitterness. He also tries to bring the parties together to negotiate before the factory is shut down or any damage to equipment or property is done. He also ensures that work is immediately resumed when the strike or lock-out is terminated.