Archive for July, 2012

The Most Ignorant One in the Room

Tuesday, July 31st, 2012

Everybody is ignorant, only on different subjects. -Roy Rogers

I don’t approach mediation thinking I’ve got to know everything.

There’s just way too much knowledge in the world for me to think I can muster together some collection of it that is more relevant and extensive than what the others in the mediation will bring with them. Even if I could, things would not go well if we all pulled-out our respective knowledge bases like weapons and slammed them down on the table to see whose is bigger and badder.

But there’s an even deeper problem with thinking that to be effective I must be the most knowledgeable one in the room.

There is at least one fundamental truth in mediation. One thing I can always count on for certain. It’s always going to be true every time I step into the mediation room to work with people as their mediator. Here it is:


Collision Course

Tuesday, July 24th, 2012

So often it seems we don’t see conflict coming in our lives and businesses until it’s right on top of us. “Where did that come from?!” Why didn’t we see it coming? (more…)

Listening for Something New

Tuesday, July 17th, 2012

For people to get to the changed thinking that resolves their conflict, there is something that they will see or hear or understand differently. (See And Now for Something Completely Different.)

What is that? How do they get there?

A friend and mediator-colleague has a really good way she gets right to the heart of changed thinking.


Learning the Lexicon: “That’s Good Medicine”

Tuesday, July 10th, 2012

I’ve written before about Learning the Lexicon – about getting familiar with the private language every group has. Learning the Lexicon of “Private Language.”)

I don’t learn their lexicon just to be able to communicate with the people I’m working with in a mediation. That’s important – knowing how to speak and understand is necessary of course.

There’s another reason as a mediator I have to learn their lexicon. It has to do with how people in conflict can change as their language changes.

This is a story about learning, and changing, through language.


Learning the Lexicon of “Private Language”

Tuesday, July 3rd, 2012

Every group  has it’s own way of talking. They’ve got things they say that make sense to them. Every culture has its own way of communicating among themselves. Even a culture of  small boys.