Before hiring a mediator, it is helpful if all parties clearly understand the definition of mediation, the mediation process itself, and what can be expected from successful mediation. Armed with this information, all parties are now more likely to choose a mediator that appropriately fits their mutual needs and objectives.
Conflict Management Help works to assist parties involved in a dispute, to come to a mutually beneficial resolution. Our mediators work from an unbiased and neutral position, identifying the needs of all parties, and ultimately resolving the dispute in a way that is acceptable to all parties.
To accomplish this, Conflict Management Help provides a safe and private space for parties to openly divulge or exchange information, and we help each party listen to the other side in a calm, controlled and efficient manner.
When hiring a mediator, it is helpful to verify that they are appropriate for the nature of the case, neutral to all parties involved, and experienced in providing patient, yet persistent mediation.
Is the mediator appropriate for the nature of the case?
Mediation is a diverse field with mediators specializing in a wide range of skill sets and disciplines. To hire a mediator that can best serve the needs of all parties, it is helpful to first identify what kind of mediator is required for the most competent management of the case.
A competent facilitative or “interest based” mediator can resolve most types of disputes, and most mediations are interest-based. All Conflict Management Help mediators have extensive training in interest-based mediation and are skilled in resolving these types of disputes.
There are some types of disputes, however, which benefit from a more “evaluative” approach. Evaluative mediators have experience and knowledge about the particular subject matter of the dispute and, although they do not give legal advice, they will comment on the relative strengths and weaknesses of each party’s position. For this reason, if a particular dispute requires an evaluative mediator, it is important that the mediator have experience with the specific nature of the dispute you are dealing with.
Conflict Management Help mediators have the experience and knowledge to provide evaluative mediation in a range of areas including:
- personal injury,
- insurance claims,
- estate, property and trust related disputes,
- employment and wrongful dismissal,
- builder’s liens and construction disputes, and contract disputes.
With mediators experienced in the full range of mediation techniques, Conflict Management Help aims to provide all parties involved in a dispute with a respectful, safe and efficient mediation process.
Is the mediator neutral to all parties and the case?
Another key consideration is the neutrality of the mediator. Conflict Management Help works to offer neutral and unbiased mediation that serves the combined interests of all parties for a fair and effective resolution in every case.
When hiring a mediator, it is also important that they hold no emotional ties to either the dispute or the parties involved. An appropriate mediator can have no personal bias or personal interest in the resolution of the case, and should be totally neutral to all parties. By having no conflict of interest, or personal stake in the dispute, the mediator can provide fair and effective mediation, and is more likely to be successful in reaching a mutually beneficial resolution.
The role of the mediator is to help parties to arrive at an outcome that both are happy to accept. Mediators avoid taking sides, making judgments or giving advice. They are simply responsible for developing effective communications and building consensus between the parties. The focus of a mediation meeting is to reach a common sense settlement agreeable that meets the needs of all involved.
Does the mediator display a balance of optimism, persistence and patience?
Conflict management often requires a neutral and unbiased third party, like a Conflict Management Help mediator, who can display a healthy balance of optimism, persistence, and patience in their pursuit of a resolution to the conflict.
An effective mediator is one who is genuinely hopeful and optimistic in their approach to resolving the dispute. Usually, when a party is seeking mediation to resolve a dispute, they likely have already tried and failed at some level to resolve the dispute on their own. The inability to personally resolve their dispute can lead to frustration on all sides. This buildup of stress may bring the parties into mediation with a negative viewpoint of their potential outcome.
At Conflict Management Help, we also believe that a good mediator should always follow optimism with persistence as they work with each party to resolve the dispute. While a mediator may be optimistic that the dispute will end with a positive resolution, they must also be capable of persistently pursuing that resolution so that an agreement can be reached to satisfy the needs of all parties involved.
A persistent mediator should be able to continually provide positive encouragement to all parties as they work through their disagreement, and help them focus on their core interests when faced with difficult decisions. Remember that participation in mediation is voluntary and and will only be successful if all parties approach the mediation with a willingness to explore all options. Mediators do not impose settlements, they must patiently encourage and facilitate a joint effort by all parties at the table. This means that in addition to the skill of the mediator, successful mediation depends on the willingness of the disputing parties to participate in good faith.
It is unfortunate when parties find themselves in a dispute that is beyond their personal ability to resolve, but mediation provides a great alternative to taking the case to court, and hiring the right mediator can be an essential factor in successfully resolving the case in a mutually beneficial way.
For a more positive outcome, Conflict Management Help recommends hiring a mediator who is appropriate for the nature of the case, neutral to all parties involved, and experienced in providing optimistic, persistent, and patient mediation services.
Visit ConflictManagementHelp.com for more information on our approach to successful mediation, and to contact us about our mediation services today.