Conflict is an unpleasant fact of life. Whether it arises from employment disputes, discrimination disputes, divorce separation and property agreements gone awry, conflict can quickly turn into litigation. Hostilities on both sides of the equation can escalate, leading to prolonged legal negotiations and tensions.
Not surprisingly, mediation is emerging as a key alternative to litigation. A mediator is a trained, impartial professional who works with both parties in a dispute to help them work through the conflict instead of resorting to litigation. Mediators are legal, educational or mental health professionals with additional training in mediation. A key component to mediation training is enneagram and negotiation training, which emphasizes the relationship aspect of the parties in dispute and reaching a satisfactory outcome for both sides.
Divorce is difficult enough under the best circumstances, and a hostile divorce process can be traumatic for everyone involved, especially children. A trained mediator can help both sides break the cycle of blame and hostility by asking both parties to acknowledge their role in the ongoing conflict, and then working together to reach a satisfactory settlement or resolution. Research demonstrates that more than two thirds of couple who chose divorce mediation were satisfied with the outcome. Mediation also makes sense economically, as it tends to cost 40-60% less than divorce litigation.
Workplace mediation is gaining ground as employers want to avoid litigation whenever possible. A routine workplace disagreement can escalate quickly into a full-blown dispute as tensions increase. A trained workplace mediator can help diffuse the tension, and enlist both sides in reaching a fair and satisfactory agreement or settlement. Both parties can avoid a costly and stressful litigation process through mediation.
Through enneagram and negotiation training and additional education in their field of specialty, a trained mediator is an asset to workplaces, legal practices, divorce clinics, and school districts. Both parties learn to understand their role in the conflict, and learn to work with the other party in reaching a fair resolution. The mediator acts as an impartial third party in the process, and helps both sides stay focused on resolution, not blame or conflict.
In a climate of increasing tensions and costly lawsuits, mediation makes sense emotionally and economically for everyone involved. From workplace conflict to commercial disputes, mediation is the sound alternative to litigation.