Last week I attended an event called “How Not to Sabotage A Mediation” hosted by the ADR ThinkTank. I would like to share a few tips from the event.
1) Focus on incentives. What does the other side want and why? What are the real interests? Remember, everyone wants to look good! What does looking good mean in this context?
2) Pushing for a mediation early on may signal that you have a weak case to the other party.
3) Use the opening at the beginning of the mediation as an opportunity to talk directly to the other side’s client.
4) An effective mediator is a trustworthy mediator.
5) Carefully draft minutes of settlement. You do not want to go back to the office trying to interpret what everyone agreed to – it could take months to reconcile.
6) Clausehound.com has crowd sourced agreements.
7) Less is more. Say exactly what you need to and no more. Even though mediations are confidential, you cannot unlearn what you already know.