I've just had a call from a lawyer with whom I have a large mediation coming up in November.
She asked me what she could do to prepare her client John, for what is probably going to be the most important meeting of his life.
Apart from the usual prep like identifying interests etc I advised her to:
3. Anticipate a predictable start to the negotiation where the other side asks for the moon and make sure John is prepared to respond in a way that keeps the dialogue going
4. Have John explain the personal side of the dispute to me, in front of the other side. Be prepared to do this early
5. Use me - make me earn my fee. Seek out my reaction to the story of the case and the negotiation moves that are unfolding. Give me a heads up on the negotiation moves John is contemplating - test them on me - I can often help
6. Acknowledge risk while expressing confidence in John's position. Make any negotiation moves credible - that means resisting the temptation to do the complete opposite of the other side's moves