Meet Your Mediator: The Role of the Professional Neutral


The list of misconceptions about who mediators are and what they do is lengthy:

  • Mediators are not judges.
  • Mediators are not referees.
  • Mediators are not counselors.

In fact, the list of what a mediator is not is probably too long to be of much help.  Instead, let’s consider what a mediator is.

Professional

A mediator is not simply someone hired to be a buffer – they are professionals who have been trained to facilitate communication and guide a discussion.

Unbiased

A mediator is usually agreed to by both parties, and has no specific loyalty or connection to either.  They are professionally bound to pursue a fair and equitable mediation process with the ultimate goal of a satisfactory agreement between both parties.

Processes

A mediator listens to both sides and attempts to “process” what they hear into neutral language that clarifies the issues and needs of both.

Expedites

The mediator works to get all relevant information out on the table and organized for mutual review and agreement.

Buffers

The mediator will work as a buffer between parties, helping to manage emotions and steer the conversation away from pain points and old cycles of argument.

Agreement

If successful, the mediator will help you write up a formal agreement detailing the fruits of your discussion in a legally enforceable document.

A mediator is not a judge who will listen to arguments and render a decision, but rather a guide who assists in making open communication possible.  As a result, mediation is effective and useful even for couples who have extreme difficulty in communicating.


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