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…

As we approach the end of Rosh Hashanah celebration, I decided to write about a book I love and gives name to this post: “The Jewish Secret of Problem Solving” by Rabbi Nilton Bonder. In the meantime, to my surprise I was lucky to learn that Constança Madureira , one of my partners at Mediar360,…

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…

In lock-down it can be a challenge to differentiate one day from the next. We’ve all been a bit less fastidious with our general presentation and dress and we have become very used to the domestic backdrop we observe as we Zoom with colleagues and clients. One of the things I wisely grabbed as we…

Pollyanna/pɒlɪˈanə/ noun/an excessively cheerful or optimistic person. “what I am saying makes me sound like some ageing Pollyanna who just wants to pretend that all is sweetness and light” Every mediator has been called a Pollyanna at some time or other, usually when encouraging those in conflict that resolution is just around the corner – and often in that…

A few recent observations prompt this blog about language and the world of words that we work with in mediation. First, in reading around the burgeoning literature on online dispute resolution and – especially – at the algorithm-based, automated end of the scale, I note the suggestion that dispute resolution and mediation are based just…

Wherever we look, there is a variety of articles, blogs, keynotes and workshop topics all talking about the necessity to develop future leaders, understand the next generation(s) and attract the right talents. The mediation profession is no exception. With this article, I am encouraging every reader to actively develop and shape the future generation of…

This blog entry arises not so much from any mediation, but from one aspect of regular social encounters that is all too normal a part of negotiation and mediation. As the title suggests, it’s about the role of inquiry, asking questions – not merely gathering information, but going beyond that in the expression of interest…

Once again, we find ourselves on the eve of the annual ICC Commercial Mediation Competition which is about to kick off in Paris, France next week. Last year I posted 10 tips for participants, one of the most important being that mediation remains an oral sport, and the most effective counsel and parties in real…

Something is in the air at the moment. And it goes to the heart of what we mediators do. On the one hand, noted mediation thinkers such as Robert Bush and Joseph Folger write an empassioned challenge to the profession “Reclaiming Mediation’s Future: Getting Over the Intoxication of Expertise, Re-Focusing on Party Self-Determination”, arguing that…