End Game Tip #3 – The Mediator’s Stance in the End Game

The End Game is when everything that has happened in the mediation comes together – the chickens come home to roost.  So it is particularly important for the mediator to be able to observe their own dynamic in relationship to the parties and also in relationship to whether the parties reach an agreement and what agreement they reach.  One of the two dangerous poles is when the mediator believes that it is solely the parties’ responsibility to reach a result and recedes too much, resulting in the parties not being able to find their way because they needed more help from the mediator.   The other dangerous pole comes out of a feeling of too much responsibility on the part of the mediator for the parties reaching an agreement, resulting in the mediator overcontrolling the process and content and coercive pressure that may well backfire.  So the challenge then is for the mediator to be able to come in as much as needed, and not more, to help the parties find their own agreement.