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Book Review: Success as a Mediator…for Dummies

by Jason Dykstra
December 2012

Absolution Mediation Blog by Jason Dykstra

Jason Dykstra
Let me start off by saying I’m not a huge fan of _______ for Dummies. Never have been. So when Victoria Pynchon asked me to review a copy(yes…I didn’t pay for it and am not being paid for this review) of Success as a Mediator for Dummies I was a little skeptical as to how good it could possibly be. However, since I had read Victoria’s The Grown Ups ABC’s of Conflict Resolution and am a regular reader of her postings on Forbes and absolutely am in love with much of Victoria’s writing, I couldn’t help but be intrigued as to what type of content would fill this book.
As someone who regularly gets emails, phone calls, and messages on Facebook and Twitter from new and experienced mediators about what it takes to build a successful mediation practice and how to get started in mediation as a career, this book will now be included in my recommendations. This book’s framework is such that you can start on any one of the 5 parts of the book and provides some great examples and resources for everything from getting training as a mediator to how to set up and grow your mediation practice. Here are the 5 parts of the book;
Part I – Acquiring the Keys to Mediation Success
Part II – Becoming a Master Mediator
Part III – Improving Your Success Rate
Part IV – Launching Your Own Mediation Practice
Part V – The Part of Tens
If you’ve read any of Victoria’s stuff before, you’ll recognize the “no bullshit” voice that Victoria has. She makes it very clear in this book that a career in mediation is not for wimps and gives some wonderful advice and guidance around where to start as a mediator.
There is only one little thing that doesn’t completely jive with me in this book. That is that all of the examples of resources are primarily in the United States, which can serve as a good reference for us Canadians, but can be misleading. The mediation field in the U.S.A. has some definite differences so some of the examples are not as relevant to mediators north of the border. However, with that being said, some of the examples only take a quick Google search to find the Canadian equivalent.
So, with that being said, if you have a mediator or someone that is looking to make Mediation their career, it can be a great Christmas gift or a stocking stuffer for that person! For more information about the Success as a Mediator for Dummies you can go here or go buy the book on Amazon now!

Biography


Jason is a Conflict Management Specialist who is helping organizations and congregations move from conflict situations to creative solutions. He specializes in relational and communication issues and uses his experience and training in mediation, group facilitation, conflict management coaching, speaking and teaching to aid you and your surroundings to better cope with conflict and become more conflict resilient. Jason has a background in social services, working with individuals with developmental disabilities, mental health and at-risk youth. He complements his experience with an Advanced Certificate in Conflict Management and is currently in pursuit of his Master's Degree in Leadership. Jason lives in St. George, Ontario with his beautiful wife and two children.



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