Christine Pratt FInstLM, FCMI
Christine Pratt: Director at HR and Diversity Management Ltd and founder of a nationally recognised bullying helpline. Christine Pratt FInstLM, FCMI is CIPD Qualified, a Fellow of the Institute of Leadership and Management, a Fellow of The Chartered Management Institute.
Christine Pratt was born in Hong Kong in 1955 at a time when her father was serving in the Armed Forces. Christine’s early life proved invaluable as she met people from extremely diverse backgrounds, as her father was posted around the world; from Hong Kong to Cyprus, Germany, Singapore and back to the UK – in the service of his country.
Christine decided to study personnel management in 1996 and embarked on her CIPD qualifications. Christine then worked as HR manager and director within the public and private sector prior to establishing her own HR Consultancy, HR & Diversity Management Limited, in 2002. This began as a generalist HR Consultancy which was formed to help small and medium sized (SME) businesses in the Wiltshire, Hampshire and Oxfordshire area.
Early cases which Christine worked on involved policy and procedure implementation in accordance with ever changing Employment Law at that time; including The Employment Act. Bullying and harassment at work often featured in these cases along with varying forms of discrimination, not only against female staff (Sex Discrimination), although this was common – but also in terms of Race, Disability and Age discrimination. Allegations of breach of procedure and constructive dismissal were also handled by Christine who was pleased to be able to bring a number of these cases to an agreed and amicable solution.
Christine Pratt also worked with larger organisations who needed independent, external, investigation support relating to complex dispute resolution cases. Several NHS Trusts asked her to investigate and resolve longer-term outstanding issues which internal HR Departments had been struggling to resolve over a number of years. Serial bullying, collusion and collective bullying cases were commonplace. Entire teams found themselves in conflict – resulting in divide, high levels of work related stress and absence and high levels of staff turnover, which significantly impacted on productivity.
Three further years of study saw Christine Pratt obtain her HR diploma and membership of the CIPD. Throughout this period she continued to study and research management styles, specialising in behaviour and dispute resolution, encouraged by her mentor Tim Field (a workplace bullying campaigner). At this time she wrote her first thesis, ‘A Management Guide to Bullying in the Workplace’.
Christine worked alongside the late Tim Field, Author of Bully In Sight, for many years. Tim was a Non Executive Director of HR and Diversity Management Limited from 2002 until 2005 and founded Bully On Line. Sadly Tim succumbed to cancer. Prior to his untimely death, Tim encouraged Christine to establish a UK telephone assistance programme for those being badly treated at work.
In 2007 Christine launched a national helpline. At this time also, HR & Diversity Management set up a helpline for both Employers and Employees. Today, the helpline is regarded as a nationally recognised Advice Centre. ACAS, The Employment Tribunal system, Citizens Advice, GP surgeries and the NHS, all refer cases to the helpline.
Through the workplace helpline Christine found she was able to help both the individual who could not afford to fight for his or her employee rights as well as the UK Employer, within both the Public and Private sectors. Christine facilitated and liaised between the parties, opening channels of communication. By investigating causes of conflict and offering independent, professional, practical and timely solutions, Christine was able to assist both the employee and the employer overcome and resolve complex employee related cases.
As experience added to her expertise Christine was called in to help re-organise complete organisations where the workforce was not performing effectively. This often required deep-routed investigations into employment policies and practices which, alongside disaffected personnel, were complicated in the extreme. However, Christine was regularly able to identify resolutions that provided complete satisfaction to both a management team and an entire workforce. Minimising future risk by ensuring that management teams had the expertise to quickly resolve ‘potential issues’ in the future, was vital in the aftermath of every case Christine advised in.
In 2007 also Christine Pratt was honoured to be personally invited by the CIPD to join a ‘Resolving Disputes in the Workplace’ consultation panel, formed to debate changing employment legislation at that time. The debate, led by a government initiative in the aftermath of The Michael Gibbon Review Paper, debated and explored the feasibility of abolishing The Employment Act in favour of a less confrontational approach to conflict at work. This led to the repealing of the Act and saw the implementation of The ACAS Code of Practice in April 2009.
By this time, Christine’s work was recognised and she was regarded as a UK leading expert in Workplace Dispute Resolution. Employers recognised and acknowledged her work and found that by engaging her skills and expertise they were not only able to amicably resolve conflict at work issues without losing key employees, but they did not have to fight expensive, risky, legal battles or face the ignominy of losing Employment Tribunal cases.
Christine Pratt – currently
Christine still leads a hectic life heading up HR & Diversity Management Limited and overseeing the HR & Diversity Management workplace bullying helpline. For the Corporation or Employer, using her knowledge of employment Case Law Christine is quickly able to assess business risk and point line mangers in the right direction – giving a professional opinion on the strength of case where there is conflict in the workplace. If the client wants to pursue a legal case, Christine refers them on to Employment Law Solicitors, who work closely with her. Fortunately, a high percentage of cases are remedied amicably.
The Equality Act states; ‘There is a requirement for the employee to receive independent advice from a solicitor, trade union official or qualified advice worker before entering into a compromise agreement.’ Call Christine today for a confidential discussion.
HR & Diversity Management is insured by: Towergate Professional Risk. HRD102IN03. Policy. RKK746572 (£1M) and is registered with the ICO (Data Commissioner).
Christine Pratt is recognised as one of the UK’s leading experts in Conflict Resolution. She is thoroughly conversant with all aspects of social conflict and anti-social behaviour, especially in the workplace. She is fully qualified, has over 15 years specialist operational HR experience, has produced complete outcomes and solutions within both the public and private sectors and she and is well published; having written articles for Personnel Today, People Management, Management Today and Edge On Line (an ILM publication). Christine is a regular speaker on LBC Radio, BBC Radio and Television in cyber-bullying and bullying in work cases and she is willing to help anyone who feels under the effects of stress in the workplace, or duress – whatever side of the fence.
Call us now if you are struggling with a complex people management issue and you want to talk to someone in confidence. Christine can help you! Call 07734 701221 now.