Nicola Hartfield

I started out in my professional career as a health based social worker, specialising in child health and terminal care. From these experiences I became interested in why parents often separated after  significant loss, and the importance of connection. This drew me into the world of family, community and workplace dispute resolution, reconciliation and mediation.

After completing a Post Graduate Diploma in Dispute Resolution, I went on to complete my Fellowship in mediation with both Resolution Institute and of the Arbitrators’ & Mediators’ Institute of New Zealand.

I have over 30 years of experience working with people in distress and difficulty, either in their personal or professional lives. I am known for being creative, hard- working and achieving solutions in entrenched disputes. My years of professional training and experience in both social work and dispute resolution create a unique solution-focused approach to shift the obstacles that get in the way of agreements being reached.


In addition to my dispute resolution practice I provide executive and employee coaching either in-person, or on-line.  Many of the issues that end in conflict, can be either avoided or managed well with the assistance of individual workplace support and coaching. I provide bespoke training and workshops to businesses and organisations focusing on communication, how to have those difficult conversations, high conflict personality, negotiation, how to give and receive feedback, change and resistance to change and the interpersonal issues that cause conflict and toxicity. I bring research findings, insight, fun  experience and practical skills to these trainings and conference presentations.

Memberships​, Affiliations and Acknowledgements

Fellow of the Arbitrators’ and Mediators’ Institute of New Zealand (FAMINZ (Med) Current)

Fellow of the Resolution Institute (Current)

AMINZ Panel of Mediators:  Family Dispute Resolution, Elder Issues, Independent Police Conduct Authority List of mediators

ACCORD 3 member (2016 - Current )

Winner of the 2014 Ann Edge Memorial Award for Excellence in Fellowship Mediation

Rated by NZ National Business Review (July 2014) as being in the top 10 family mediators in NZ

AMINZ Council Vice President 2018 / 2019 / 2020

Contract teacher for Massey University Dispute Resolution Centre (2014 - 2017)

Member of the American Bar Association Dispute Resolution Section (2014 - 2019 )

Member of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts (2015 - 2018)

Registered social worker with the Social Work Registration Board (1986 -2018)

Member of United Nations Women New Zealand (2014 - 2020 )

Hawkes’ Bay Restorative Justice Te Puna Wai Ora Inc (2010-2017)



Bachelor Social Work: Massey University Palmerston North New Zealand (1986)

Post Graduate Diploma in Business (Dispute Resolution): Massey University Palmerston North New Zealand (2010)​​

Te Reo Maori Level Two (Te Wananga o Aotearoa) 2013


Ministry of Justice: Mediator Family Court (2014 - current)
Crown Law: Professional Workplace Supervisor (2019 -current)
Accident Compensation Corporation: Professional Workplace Supervisor (2001 -current)
Kainga Ora: Professional Workplace Supervisor (2019 -current)
Ministry of Social Development: Professional Workplace Supervisor (2019 -current)
Healthcare NZ: Professional Workplace Supervisor (2019 -current)
Independent Police Conduct Authority: Mediator (2016 -current)
Retirement Commission : Mediator (2011 -current)
EQC Panel of Mediators : Mediator (2011 - 2016)
Internal Affairs: Confidential Listening Service (2012)
Health and Disability Commission: Expert Advisor (2007 - 2018)
Ministry of Social Development: Review & Client Representative Adjudicator (2004 - 2017)

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