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It is a CMC requirement for all trainee mediators to undertake observations. Below, Ewa Babecka who observed two mediations with ProMediate writes about her experience:

Observation of Mediations

Nowadays, people around the globe face various conflicts like socioeconomic or political disputes which destroy peace within communities. We can observe it in our neighbourhood where the members of our society are dealing with individual disagreements which cause personal, emotional, and financial damage.

It really doesn’t matter, if the conflict is on the local or global scale, it causes destruction on so many levels of the individual lives.

Is there any solution to it? YES! Mediation services provided by a qualified mediator.

The main purpose of mediation is to create a neutral“platform”, where the parties of the conflict have an opportunity to solve the issue, on terms suitable for both sides.

The impartial role of a mediator is to support andencourage both parties to seek an effective solution to their dispute. However, undertaking accredited mediations training covers only theoretical aspects of the process. Some mock cases and role play during the training show only a little of what the real mediation is really about. There are also some personal qualities that a good mediator should have such as being a judgement free, good listener with a drive to assist in finding the right solution to a conflict.

Nevertheless, in order to become a qualified mediator, you must complete observations of mediations facilitated by a qualified and experienced mediator.

Those observations provide pivotal experience to develop a number of skills which are of immense value to the newly accredited mediator. By observing proficient mediator, you have an opportunity to learn the importance of:

understanding of the issue
recognising short and long terms needs of the parties
the skill to formulate relevant questions in order to solve the issue
an ability to explain short and long-term benefits of finding solutions to the issue

In addition, it is a unique possibility to observe and understand a behaviour of the parties to evaluate their rationality behind the conflict. Watching an ongoing nonverbal communication increases an ability to recognise the other underlying issues that might hinder the end of the dispute. Furthermore, to watch how others, e.g. family members, legal advisors influence the reasoning process of each party increases perception of the trainee mediator. It also enhances the observer’s ability to distinguish between a reality of achieving a suitable solution and paperwork exercise as evidence for further legal actions.

The above list presents only some examples of benefits taken from observation of the mediation process, facilitated by an expert mediator. In fact, the list of invaluable opportunities for a newly qualified mediator to gain and improve skills is much longer.

To make things better, the whole practical approach is for the best interest of the future clients, who will rely on mediators’ skills, experience, and professional standards. Obviously,  knowing  that a mediator has been practically prepared to undertake their case will allow them to participate in the mediation process with full confidence.

Author: Ewa Babicka


To observe a mediation get in touch with ProMediate.