Co-mediation — with the right mix of professionals — is one of the most powerful tools we can offer our clients.  If you’ve practiced it, you know the effectiveness and efficiency that comes with the right co-mediators.  That right combination is not the same in every case, of course.  I am always looking for other mediators with whom to work.

The foundation of my work is client autonomy and self-determination.  They know best where they need to go. Our job is to help them get there.

My approach to mediation is largely facilitative or elicitive (e.g., Riskin, Cloke, Mayer), though I have the background in and can take an evaluative approach.  I often find helpful the tools of the transformative (Bush, Folger) and narrative approaches (Winslade, Monk).

I focus the negotiation toward discussion of, and agreement based on, the clients’ assessments of their most important interests.  I look to help the clients develop opportunities in integrative issues to provide wider latitude for resolution of the distributive aspects of the dispute.  I have the tools to effectively manage the often late-stage negotiation of those distributive issues.

Substantive interventions are based on what I call purposeful curiosity and compassionate inquiry.  If it is helpful, I can be very directive in managing the process the clients have chosen and helping hold themselves accountable for the choices they have made.  The environment is collaborative, building trust through iterations of reciprocity and verifiable performance in information exchanges, offers, and partial or conditional agreements.

For private disputes I have adapted best practices developed in large-scale multilateral public policy field, such as situation assessment, process design and convening procedures.  From the community mediation field I have adapted the tools for engaging responding parties.  From the litigation-based settlement conference approach, I can use an intermediary approach and have adapted the tools for managing the negotiation of distributive issues.

If you are interested in referrals or would like to explore co-mediation, drop me a note or give me a call.  Or join the dispute resolution conversation on BeanBlawg.  Let’s talk about how we can best serve our clients together.

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