Tips For A Successful Mediation
the information provided by the mediator prior to the session or check out the mediator's website.
- Make sure the style used by the mediator meets your needs.
- Ask questions in the opening session to address any concerns or questions you
may have regarding the mediation process.
to the process.
- Most conflict is not a result of a single event; rather it is a result of multiple
past events. Be prepared to talk about what is important to you, but also listen to what the other party has perceived in
the past and present.
- When mediating custody and access
issues, be aware that the focus of the mediation is on developing plans that put the needs and best interests of the children
- Allow the mediator to facilitate the
discussion, manage the process, and control the emotional climate in the session. Notify the mediator if you need to speak
privately by requesting a caucus, or ask for a break if you need time to organize your thoughts.
- Be prepared to answer question posed by the mediator or other party. Questions are a way
to gain clarification and understanding, and are not intended to challenge your perspective or to indicate that you are not
correct. If you feel the question was inappropriate or challenging, take a breath, and calmly state your opinion.
- Focus on how you wish to have things occur from now on. The past cannot be changed,
nor can past wrongs be righted. State requests for changes in a future and positive manner. For example instead of requesting
“I want him/her to stop putting me down”, you could suggest “I would like to propose that we speak positively
about each other”.
- Mediators bill on the hour or the start time for the mediation block. The hour starts at
the time the mediation is scheduled, not when both parties actually arrive. Being on time prevents additional conflict. Check
your mediator’s policy on billing for late or missed sessions.
- Bring your calendar or planner to each session.
there is to be more than one session, having a calendar or planner makes it easier to schedule next sessions.
- Know the policy for canceling sessions.
- The policy for canceling sessions
should be clearly explained in the opening session or in the mail out information. If it is not clear, ask for the explanation
and be sure it is understood. Although it is very rare for a mediator to cancel a session be aware of the guidelines.
- Be aware that other parties involved, such as attorneys, may have other cancellation
policies. It is the responsibility of the participants, not the mediator, to notify any representatives or subject matter
experts as to the time and place of the mediation. Mediators do not pay for the services outside parties attending the mediation,
it is the responsibility of the parties.
the billing/fee schedule for your mediator.
- Most mediators
offer a block time rate or a flat hourly rate. It is usually less expensive to book a 3, 4 or 8-hour block rather than paying
the hourly rate.