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Phil Varnak
Phil Varnak Associates, Inc.
3042 S. Macon Circle
Aurora, CO 80014
(303) 337-6203
(303) 517-7613 Cell

The need for Dispute-Resolution Professionals is in greater demand today than at any point in our history. Third-party dispute decision authorities have identified that many complaints/hearings they decide could have been resolved by more informal procedures that provided the participants with some involvement in designing the decision. With many years experience in the Human Resources arena, Mr. Varnak and his associates are available to provide human resource expertise for organizations who desire to improve dispute resolution processes.

In addition to dispute resolution, Phil Varnak Associates has many experts available with experience in a variety of Human Resource specialty areas whether you need assistance in dispute resolution, position classification and pay determinations, policy design, program evaluation, training, or ongoing consulting services.

Phil Varnak and Associates are ready to assist you in developing a program to meet your HR needs. Each associate has extensive experience in providing HR services for large organizations. Some examples of training offered by Phil Varnak Associates:
  • Mediation Overview, 1 day
  • Mediation for Supervisors and Managers, 3 days
  • Mediation for ADR Professionals, 5 days
  • Effective Employee Discipline
  • Labor Relations for the Professional LR Specialist
  • Employee Relations for the Professional ER Specialist
  • Preparing and Presenting Arbitration
  • Conducting Effective Employee Counseling
  • Interest Based Bargaining/Problem Solving
  • Managerial Interaction with a Federal Union
  • Building Effective Labor Management Relationships
About Phil Varnak
PHIL VARNAK is the founder and principal in an independent Dispute Resolution and Human Resource Management (HR) consulting firm in Denver, Colorado. His primary areas of emphasis include conflict resolution management, team development, mediation, dispute resolution system design and establishment of cooperative relationships between labor unions and management. His consulting and coaching is customized to the goals and needs of the client, and is shaped by the data gathered during initial assessment or research involvement with clients.

Phil is the former Director, Labor and Employee Relations for the Bureau of Reclamation, Department of Interior. During this assignment, he was responsible for the labor and employee relations activities for all facilities in the /Headquarters Office and six Regional Offices nationally. This involved thirty-four bargaining units many of which had rights to negotiate pay and pay practices and did so annually. Phil's responsibilities included advice and assistance on negotiations; review of negotiated agreements for statutory compliance; oversight on all Unfair Labor Practice charges and complaints; assistance and often presentation for arbitration cases; review of all written briefs prepared for agency cases; supervision of . In addition, he designed the agency performance appraisal process; and was a principal designer of the agency mediation program which is being used to resolved grievances and EEO issues.

Mr. Varnak was previously Director of Human Resources for two separate Veteran's Administration Medical Centers, Denver, CO and Pittsburgh, PA. In these assignments, he had overall responsibility for staffing, promotions, pay determinations, employee and managerial training, labor management relations, the Equal Employment Opportunity program and employee relations. He was a member of the top management team for both facilities with responsibility for the allocation of space, staffing and budget for the entire medical center.

Phil's professional credentials, extensive HR experience, continued educational development in dispute resolution practices and development of numerous labor-management cooperative councils have combined to produce a wide variety of public and private sector clients. He is currently on contract to several Federal agencies and Unions to provide continuing advice and assistance as a consultant for compensation activities, Human Resource Advisory Services, and/or provision of Labor Management oversight activities. In addition, he provides government-wide training in the subjects of Mediation, Labor Relations, Interest Based Problem Solving/Negotiations, Arbitration Case Preparation and Presentation, Effective Employee Counseling Techniques and Employee Relations. Phil also mediates/facilitates disputes in the Federal and private sectors.

Individual and group dynamics are well understood and utilized in Phil's dispute resolution processes. Great concern is exercised to assure that all participants are given the opportunity to have their views acknowledged and considered in achieving group consensus and an ultimate improvement in the interpersonal relation between group participants. He is qualified to administer and interpret the Myers Briggs Type Inventory (MBTI).

Phil has been actively involved in reorganization of large work forces, including some activities that included staffing reductions. His activities with union and management officials are designed to involve these individuals in cooperative approaches to assure the views and concerns of the unionized employees are fully considered in the goals and plans of management to reorganize without involvement in adversarial activities detrimental to the concerns of all involved parties.

  • Master of Health Care Administration - U.S Army School of Health Care Admin. at Baylor University
  • Bachelor of Science, Education - West Virginia University
  • Senior Professional in Human Resource Management Certified (SPHR)
  • Qualified to Administer and Interpret Myers Briggs Type Inventory (MBTI)
  • Mediation Certificate from CDR Associates, Boulder, CO 1991
  • Masterful Facilitation, Yarbrough Associates, Boulder, CO, 1996
  • A Practical Guide to Interest Based Bargaining, 2nd Edition
  • Desktop Guide to Unfair Labor Practices, 2nd Edition
  • The Bargaining Book (a handbook for negotiators in the Federal Sector)
All the above books can be purchases through FPMI Communications Inc at Multiple purchase discounts are available.

If you would like more specific information concerning the above described work outcomes or persons to contact, please contact Phil at the above cited address or telephone number.
Training Courses, Workshops
Following is a listing of training courses available by title and general subject matter. For each course listed, a full description is available which includes course content, training objectives, instructional aides, target audience, etc. Contact Phil Varnak Associates for more in-depth information, prices, and scheduling. Course modifications can be made for specific organizational needs. (303) 841-8736.

Mediation Overview (1/2, 1 day) Understand how mediation fits into the options available for Alternative Dispute Resolution. Develop an appreciation for the skills and personal characteristics necessary to mediate disputes. Understand the non-threatening nature of mediation and how it can be a win-win process. View video on the mediation process.

Mediation for Supervisors and Managers (2 or 3 days) In addition to the overview content, participants will experience effective listening and communication skills. Effective group processes, mediator record keeping, and situational mediation discussions. Limited hands on experience in actual mediation role plays.

Mediation for ADR Professionals (5 days) In addition to the information covered in the above two introductory session's exposure to additional more complex mediation scenarios in actual role play situations. Generally provides the training exposure necessary to progress the participants toward actual dispute mediation.

Effective Employee Discipline (3 days) Provide exposure to differences in discipline and performance cases that will equip the supervisor/manager to effectively deal with employee problems. Precedent setting decisions are cited and reviewed. Leave issues, reasonable accommodation, fitness for duty and firm choice/settlement agreements are discussed. One day is spent on effective counseling techniques.

Employee Relations for the ER Professional (3 days) In-depth discussion of differentiation in discipline and performance cases with emphasis on precedent setting case decisions made by MSPB, EEOC, and the Courts. Application of Douglas Factors, dealing with threats and violence, substance abuse, off-duty conduct, reasonable accommodation and alcoholism. Extensive use of case studies in workshop situation.

Labor Relations for the LR Professional (3 days) In-depth discussion of LR Statute and decisions of FLRA and Courts. Case discussion on Weingarten discussions, Formal meetings, free speech, unfair labor practice charges and complaints, grievance procedures, good faith negotiations and information requests.

Traditional Position-Based Negotiations (4 days) Designed for negotiating teams, either labor or management but not both. Covers preparations for negotiation, ground rules, effective use of caucus, composition of team and effective use of team members. Record keeping, use of electronic tools, and finalizing agreement as well as effective impasse procedures are covered.

Interest-Based Negotiation/Problem Solving (2 days) Generally presented jointly for union and management teams or for other teams desiring to work together in harmony. A process for dealing with interests of the parties rather than pre-established positions. Covers differences between interest and position based activities; joint activities to develop team processes, and recommended rules for teams to make the process effective.

Conducting Effective Employee Counseling (1 day) Can be combined with any other course. Provide skills to determine when to counsel; whether to use directive of non-directive approach; preparation for counseling; actual conduct of the session; record keeping and different approaches for conduct vs. performance counseling.

Managerial Interaction with a Federal Union (2 days) Understanding when union involvement is necessary in employee-managerial activities. Formal discussions, Weingarten meetings, grievance handling, free speech, day-to day activities, interaction with union representatives, and unfair labor practices.

Building Effective Labor Management Relationships (3 days) Principles of Interest Based Bargaining, Team Building, win-win dispute resolution, negotiation of ground rules for functioning and meeting procedures. Generally designed for joint presentation to labor and management executive teams.

Rushford & Associates
303-989-3796 (voice) ~ 303-985-4996 (fax)
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615 South Xenon Court ~ Lakewood, CO 80228

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