What is Mediation and How Can it Help Me?

When business or personal disputes and arguments reach a point where communication stops or becomes adversarial, it’s difficult to know what to do next.  Many turn to litigation but there is an alternative.  Mediation, as a practice is extremely effective in helping parties find solutions.  So successful that statistics of 75% to over 80% success rates have been published in voluntary mediation.

Mediation has many advantages over litigation:

  • Mediation is less expensive and less time-consuming
  • Mediation leaves control of the outcome to the parties rather than in the hands of a judge or jury
  • In mediation the parties can fashion their own solutions
  • When ongoing relationships are important, for example, among family members or between businesses that wish to continue a business relationship, mediation provides an opportunity to resolve a dispute in a non-adversarial way so that important relationships are repaired and preserved.

You’ve decided you want to try mediation, so now what? It makes sense then that choosing the right mediator could help your situation. What do you hope to achieve from the mediation and what style of mediation would be best to accomplish that?  

Facilitative-the mediator structures a process to assist the parties in reaching a mutually agreeable resolution. The mediator asks questions and assists the parties in finding and analyzing options for resolution. The facilitative mediator does not make recommendations to the parties, give his or her own advice or opinion as to the outcome of the case, or predict what a court would do in the case. In disputes where the parties have an ongoing relationship, a facilitative style of mediation is often appropriate and productive.

Evaluative –the mediator acts more like a neutral evaluator or arbitrator assists the parties in reaching resolution by pointing out the weaknesses of their cases, and predicting what a judge or jury would be likely to do and is based on legal concepts. The evaluative mediator structures the process, and directly influences the outcome of mediation. Evaluative mediation is most often used by attorney mediators and retired judges.

Regardless of the style you choose, mediation can be a tool for success. How does your business deal with disputes? Are there issues you would like to resolve and need help? 

Mediation makes sense when you want to end a problem but not a relationship. It is a cost effective, confidential and proven method to work through business conflicts. 

                        author

Joanna Wares

Joanna Wares is a skilled mediator and arbitrator. Las Vegas Mediation offers an alternative method for business and families to resolve disputes. MORE >

Featured Mediators

ad
View all

Read these next

Category

Bringing Oxytocin Into The Room: Notes On The Neurophysiology Of Conflict

"We do not see things as they are. We see things as we are." Anais Nin While people in conflict commonly refer to facts, behaviors, feelings, personalities, or events, for...

By Kenneth Cloke
Category

On American Arrogance: Styles of Mediation

A comment to one of my columns, “War and Negotiation: Lessons From the Europeans” drew the apparent anger and animus of at least one European, Christiana from the Netherlands (12/13/07)....

By Robert Benjamin
Category

ABA Task Force’s 4 Elements On Quality Mediators

Recently while reading Deborah Laufer's ADR Network newsletter, I cam across the following: ABA Section of Dispute Resolution Task Force on Improving Mediation Quality - http://www.abanet.org/dispute/documents/FinalTaskForceMediation.pdf. The Task Force focused...

By Jeff Thompson

Find a Mediator

X
X
X