The escalating situation in Ukraine brings challenges to those of us committed to mediation and peace-making. Is there a time when what we stand for does not work and cannot be pursued? When dialogue, even in the most threatening of situations, is not appropriate? I don’t pretend to have the answers but I have been…

In the 1930’s anthropologist Gregory Bateson developed the concept of Schismogenesis – the creation of division. He defined this as ‘a process of differentiation in the norms of individual behaviour resulting from cumulative interaction between individuals’, or groups of individuals. A process of this sort can result in individuals or groups drifting apart, almost becoming mirror…

For many years now, I have been conducting workplace mediation and facilitation, including conflicts in teams and between staff and team leaders or between owners, and also regular away-days, strategy and management meetings and the like – where a conflict or dispute is not the main focus and people are taking time to reflect with…

List of Must-Read Books for Every Negotiator Let me introduce you to my new project. I would like to put together a list of five books every negotiator must-read. And when doing this, I do not have in mind works directly related to negotiation and/or mediation such as Getting to Yes by Roger D. Fisher…

For readers who are new, the “Neuro-Linguist’s Toolbox” series is an ongoing series focused on using Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) in our practice of amicable dispute resolution. The first section focused on rapport (the first of which can be found here). The second section focuses on matters of self-care and personal improvement for mediators (the first…

The Program on Negotiation at Harvard (PON) sends to subscribers a daily blogpost of interesting negotiation thoughts and analyses. It regularly visits the negotiation styles of world leaders with the idea that ‘by studying the negotiation styles of famous leaders, we can identify what to emulate and what to abandon’. Unsurprisingly it has shone a…

For a while now some of my mediations and facilitations have been taking place again in physical spaces, while others remain virtual, as does most of my teaching and training. The effects of Corona are still very much determining how people come together to work. Having got used to the virtual world, I am now…

Every now and again something happens to cause me to pause and think – or re-think. Recently, I had that experience at a small ruined castle in the heart of Scotland, near a lovely country town called Edzell. Edzell Castle, visited by, among others, Mary Queen of Scots and her son, King James VI of…

For readers who are new, the “Neuro-Linguist’s Toolbox” series is an ongoing series focused on using Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) in our practice of amicable dispute resolution. The first section focused on rapport (the first of which can be found here). The second section focuses on matters of self-care and personal improvement for mediators (the first…

Currently, Brazil is the second country with the highest number of cases of Burnout Syndrome. This syndrome (which was even included in the International Classification of Diseases of the World Health Organization in 2019) is defined as “emotional exhaustion”, and its main symptoms are related to anxiety and depression, a very common situation in today’s…