Get the Five W's and How: Negotiation Notes and Mediation Minutes
A key capability for a successful attorney is effective negotiation skills to resolve conflict and legal disputes.
Negotiating over 1000 such disputes for clients and serving as a mediator in over 100 cases, has been a tremendous education on how to successfully resolve conflict. As a mediator, I have attended two Harvard Negotiation Programs, been trained as an EEOC mediator, a Center for Resolution of Disputes Board member, taught Mediation and Conflict Resolution at Xavier University, a member of the National Academy of Distinguished Neutrals, and have served for over 20 years as an American Arbitration Association Mediator and Arbitrator. In addition, I have had to opportunity to witness many very skilled, and some not so skilled, lawyers in mediation. Some have approached the process in a very prepared and strategic manager in dealing with the mediator and their client. Others have either not prepared their client or come to the mediation without a meaningful strategy.
The purpose of this and future articles is to share insight and provide best practices on how to resolve conflict and disputes faced by all lawyers. Whether you are involved with negotiating a contract, resolving a business dispute, a divorce or a simple or complex piece of litigation, all lawyers can enhance their negotiation and mediation skills.
The first and most important step in any successful negotiation or mediation is to get the facts.
Once you have thoroughly developed the facts and supporting documentation, your analysis should shift to the applicable law.
Finally, the preparedness side of the equation is the important step of preparing your client for negotiations or mediation.
By following these guidelines, you and your client will be ready to proceed with the next steps for a successful negotiation or mediation.
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