Phillip de Wattignar
Phillip is a specialist employment relations practitioner and respected negotiator. He is an experienced communicator and advocate who has appeared before the Employment Tribunal and the Employment Court. He is a qualified employment mediator and worked for the Department of Labour 2000 - 2012.
Phillip’s career in workplace relations began in 1983 and includes work as a union organiser, union secretary and union advocate in the Employment Tribunal. After completing mediation and arbitration papers at Massey University in 2000, he was employed as a mediator. His knowledge and ability to lead negotiation discussions and encourage employers and employees to find solutions to difficult employment relations problems and legal disputes is valued.
Phillip is dedicated to providing employers and employees with ways to maintain fairness and harmony at work. His experience has shown him that early involvement of competent employment relations practitioners is the best way to deal with problems and conflict at work. It allows those involved to deal with problems quickly and at a low level so they can maintain relationships and get back to normal. This is better and easier on everyone than fighting long and expensive legal cases with lawyers.
Phillip is mad about motorcycles and races a Triumph Daytona 675 in the Clubmans’ class. He also enjoys gardening, carefully observed by Elspeth’s spoilt black cat Rita.
Elspeth is a highly accomplished communicator who understands the importance of good communication in the workplace.
She has worked as a journalist and is best known for her newspaper columns in the Otago Daily Times.
She is a popular, if somewhat reluctant, public speaker.
She has a strong sense of what is right and wrong in a workplace and has empathy with those who know they have a problem and need to work it through with someone supportive.
Elspeth has a passion for teaching and encouraging others to learn, including those with learning difficulties. She teaches shorthand to Media Studies students at Aoraki Polytechnic and recently undertook training in adult literacy tutoring.
Outside her paid work roles, she has raised four sons, and held leadership positions in a variety of organisations including Playcentre, a school board of trustees and an after-school centre. She has served as a union delegate and continues to take a keen interest in workplace issues as a board member on Workplace Support. Experiences with informal dispute resolution in the community led her to complete mediation training through Massey University where she met Phillip.
In her spare time she reads, knits and has been striving to produce the perfect savoury scone.
Phillip de Wattignar and Elspeth McLean