When Should I Contact the Ombudsman?

“When should I make an appointment to talk with the Ombudsman?” This is a common question, without an easy answer. Perhaps the shortest, and best, answer is: any time that feels right to the individual given the specifics of the situation. I talk with students at every stage of a conflict, and there can be much gained from a conversation at any point along the way.

Principles of Collaborative Conflict Resolution

Units on campus may articulate guidelines and principles for many things.  However, that may not be the case for managing and resolving conflict situations, even though we know that conflict is a part of any organization.  Taking some time to consider a collaborative and principled response to challenging conflict situations can contribute to a healthy and inclusive climate for all, even under trying circumstances. 

Consider these principles as a starting point for collaborative conflict resolution:

men shaking hands

Confidentiality and the Ombuds Office

Confidentiality is an important principle in the work of the University Ombudsman.  But what does confidentiality mean specifically, and how might that impact your decision to contact the Ombudsman?


Office of the Ombudsman Charter

The University of Michigan Ombuds Office charter was approved in October 2014.  But what is a charter, and why is it important?

An ombuds charter clarifies and codifies the roles and responsibilities of the Ombudsman, reflecting a shared understanding of how the office will function within the University.  As an organizational ombuds, the charter articulates the principles of the ombuds role and their consistency with the International Ombuds Association standards of practice.


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