The Advantages of Preparing for a Mediation Session
Mediation is seldom finalised in one session and it is accordingly always a good idea to spend some time preparing for the mediation before the start of each mediation session. Issues to consider include the nature of the issues inherent in the dispute, the best possible outcome that can be expected for the matter, the least damaging options and also how the other party may perceive the dispute and what their best possible outcome would potentially look like.
The more prepared parties are for a family mediation, the greater the likelihood that they will experience the benefits of the process and the greater the likelihood of increased productivity of time and beneficial outcome during the mediation session.
16 Issues to Consider When Preparing for a Mediation :
- Determine from your own perspective what is the conflict all about.
- What are the issues involved in the conflict?
- Consider what the conflict is about from the other parties’ perspective.
- What are the potential issues for them?
- Consider what are the issues that you and the other party agree on
- Consider what are the issues that you and the other party disagree on
- Unpack the conflict and carefully assess whether aspects of the conflict have potentially been exacerbated through there being a misunderstanding whether on your side or the other party’s side. What is this misunderstanding? In what manner can/should this misunderstanding be rectified?
- Do you owe the other party an apology?
- Do you feel that the other party owes you an apology?
- Consider whether there is supporting document that needs to be brought to the mediation process to assist with possible resolution of any of the issues in dispute.
- Consider what documents you would potentially require the other party to produce in order to assist with possible resolution of the matter.
- Consider your options – what would you like to achieve with mediation? What would be the least detrimental outcome for everyone involved in this conflict?
- What outcome do you think that the other party would like to achieve?
- If the mediation is not successful what is your next best option and what is the likely outcome hereof from a time, costs and results perspective?
- Consider the other party’s communication and negotiation styles – what aspects of it creates an uncomfortability for you or acts as a trigger for negative outbursts or response? How do you think you can/should handle this if and when it takes place?
- Consider if there are any pressing issues that need to be finalised early on in the process – what are these issues? What are the options? What outcome is needed? How might the other party respond to these issues? Why?