John Ford, BA LLB (UCT) is an experienced workplace mediator and soft-skills trainer.
John studied law at the University of Cape Town before moving to Namibia, where he practiced from 1988 to 1995. Initially, he focused on representing survivors of human-rights abuses. After Namibian independence in 1990, his focus shifted to labor and employment law.
John moved to California in 1996 and trained as a mediator. He has since successfully mediated hundreds of workplace disputes, and has worked with numerous teams to help them deal successfully with conflict.
John has provided training to thousands of employees at all levels in the workplace, across a wide range of industries. His workshops focus on the development of soft skills, such as communication, negotiation, facilitation, conflict resolution, emotional intelligence, customer service and mediation.
John teaches negotiation at UC Berkeley School of Law, mediation to graduate Business and Psychology students at Golden Gate University, and organizational collaboration online through Creighton University.
He is a past president of the Association for Dispute Resolution of Northern California (ADRNC), and was the managing editor of www.mediate.com from 2000 to 2011. Currently, he is a member of the Association for Conflict Resolution and the ADRNC.
John is the current trainer of a two-day Mastering Workplace Mediation seminar for members of the Northern California Human Resources Association (NCHRA). He also teaches a longer version of this class through UC Berkeley Extension.
It is this training and his passion to make the world a more peaceful place that inspired him to write Peace at Work: The HR Manager’s Guide to Workplace Mediation, and to found the HR Mediation Academy.
“John has handled several mediations involving students, faculty and staff. He is one of the most effective mediators I have worked with. He has a way of gaining the trust of the parties in a mediation setting and has a calming effect in even the most contentious of situations. He handles issues relating to diversity with skill and sensitivity. His ethics are above reproach, and his understanding of human nature is extraordinary. I always think of him first when I need a mediator.”