Cornell University

Human Capital Development

16 E. 34th Street, NYC, 866-470-1922

Employee Complaints and Investigations CO231


Select the session you'd like to attend

Handling employee complaints internally is a highly sensitive, multi-faceted process that involves many people. This workshop provides you with a practice-based, step-by-step approach to enhance your understanding of:

  • The internal complaint handling process from A to Z
  • The legal requirements organizations must observe
  • Necessary technical and communication skills

Key Topics

  • The complaint process
    • Defining the role of the complaint handler
    • Comparing complaint processes
  • Complaint intake
    • Handling the emotional aspects of complaints
    • Effective communication skills for complaint handlers
    • Essential interviewing questions
    • Legal concerns: EEO and employment laws, confidentiality, and no retaliation
  • Structuring an investigation
    • Stating the issues in terms of policy and laws
    • Using information-gathering techniques
    • Interviewing complainants and accused persons
    • Determining when to involve an attorney
  • Complaint resolution
    • Identifying solutions, interventions, or resolutions
    • Monitoring and following up on complaints
  • Evaluating the effectiveness of the complaint process

Special Features

Simulated employee complaints, including practice sessions, role play, professional critiquing, and skill pointers

Who Will Benefit

HR, ER and EEO professionals who want to gain in-depth expertise in managing the internal EEO complaint process


Basic knowledge of EEO and Employment laws or completion of HR and the Law, or The Law of EEO or Legal Issues in the Workplace

Note: Upon completion of this workshop we offer: EO332 - Advanced Employee Investigations


Susan W. Brecher, Esq., Director of Employee Relations, Legal, EEO and Diversity Programs in Human Capital Development at Cornell University, ILR. She currently manages learning services in Legal, Employee Relations, and EEO, including developing, designing and facilitating programs. In addition, Ms. Brecher partners with private, public, and non-profit organizations on customized training programs. During her tenure at Cornell, Ms. Brecher served as a Director of Statewide Management Programs as well as oversight of all aspects of the EEO, Labor Relations, Human Resources, Management Development and Online Learning programs. Ms. Brecher teaches in a graduate level Human Resources Program and advises, consults, coaches, handles all aspects of employment law, employee relations, internal investigations, dispute resolution issues and mediates, facilitates and conducts fact-findings. She worked at the law firm Skadden, Arps, ABC and NBC and holds a B.A. summa cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, from Union College and a J.D. from Case Western Reserve University, where she was on the Law Review.

Shelley M. Greenwald, Esq., Principal, Shelley M. Greenwald, Esq., specializing in the field of employment practices and litigation. Ms. Greenwald advises, counsels, trains, and handles all aspects of employment law litigation. Formerly, she was in-house counsel at NBC and has appeared on CourtTV and CNBC.

Michele Selma Kayne, Esq., Managing Member, Kayne Legal Consulting, PLLC specializes in global employment law and litigation, employee relations, investigations and training. Ms. Kayne counsels, advises, trains and manages all aspects of employment law and workplace issues. She also has significant experience in non-compete matters, wage & hour matters, discrimination matters, workplace disputes, investigations, global privacy matters, class and collective action litigation as well as arbitration and mediation. Formally, she was in-house counsel and eDiscovery counsel to MetLife, and employment counsel to Stroock & Stroock & Lavan LLP, and Seward & Kissel LLP. Ms. Kayne also is principal of Simply Selma, LLC, a health coach business focused on assisting busy professionals and attorneys reach their health and wellness goals by making small lifetime adjustments to their nutrition and lifestyle.