A rather unfortunate situation has been developing at my workplace, which doesn't directly affect me but I would like to get involved because it looks like people are about to get hurt.
A dispute over a rather important issue (regarding this year's bonuses) has began between a department and upper management. In order to address the issue, said department has chosen a representative to talk with management to resolve said issue.
Unfortunately the person that has been chosen has the backbone of a paramecium. She is mediocre at her job, she's shy and doesn't have that good relationships with some people in upper management. Arguably, she is the second best choice from that group, since the best choice has a bit of an anger issue and might make things even harder.
I would like to get involved since there are a couple of people in that department that I am good friends with and possibly offer my help in the matter. I'm a good negotiator, I am a part of the upper management but in another department and I also am in good terms with this department's management. I believe it would be all around beneficial.
I was thinking of approaching the current group representative and asking them to step down for the reasons mentioned above.
How can I tactfully approach this person and ask them to step down?
Another option would be to approach this department's staff directly and ask them to drop their current representative but it seems dishonest somehow and I would rather not ask multiple questions in one post.
Update: I was actually approached this morning out of the blue and was asked my input on the situation (possibly someone from my work reads IPS). The answers below were very helpful in maneuvering the situation. It seems most of the department has little faith in their representative but they will go with her nevertheless since bringing the head of another department to an internal department discussion might be perceived as a threat to the current department head.
Although in reality this is not a corporate office, this is a hospital and the head of a department gunning for another department's head position is impossible.