What are Mediation Services?
We tend to think mediation services are all alike, but in fact, mediators follow different approaches depending on the type of conflict they are dealing with.
In mediation, a neutral third-party mediator encourages both sides to present their views and helps them devise a mutually acceptable agreement. Ideally, mediation services allow parties to air their grievances and work toward a solution at minimal cost.
But mediators should acknowledge the complicating power dynamics that are likely to be present during mediation. In particular, mediators could carefully explain the mediation context and its goals and procedures, as well as any alternatives, to parties when talks begin.
Keep in mind, however, that your interests and those offering the mediation services may not be identical. The mediator’s sole interest is to help the parties achieve a settlement. This is also your interest, of course—but only if the settlement is preferable to your no-settlement alternatives, such as a trial or termination of your relationship with the other party.
What if you can’t meet in person, though? Perhaps you and the other party are located in different geographic areas. Maybe your dispute originated in an online transaction, and you’ve never even met. Or perhaps one of you feels threatened or intimidated by the other and is reluctant to meet in person. In the late 1990s, various start-ups began offering e-mediation or online mediation services to organizations and the general public.
Studies of online mediation services have found it to be an effective means of resolving disputes.
If you want to understand the mediation process and why it’s a powerful business tool, download your free special report, Mediation Secrets for Better Business Negotiations: Top Techniques from Mediation Training Experts, today.
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