Entries Tagged 'Communication Skills' ↓
March 4th, 2012 — Communication Skills, Conflict Resolution
Mediation is a form of alternative dispute resolution that has become popular among combative parties today. Mediation is often appointed by the court. In other instances, the parties agree to go through the process on their own. What is this process all about? The idea is to open up the lines of communication in hopes of reaching an equitable solution prior to taking the case to court. A good mediator can get both sides talking and ensure that the dialogue is productive. They use professional techniques to ensure that things stay on track.
Mediation to avoid expensive litigation
One thing that a good mediator will do is get both parties talking about a solution that makes sense. Litigation carries a lot of dead cost for the involved parties. Legal fees and court costs are high in most instances. Many parties can come to an agreement that would benefit them both financially over going to trial. A skilled mediator will guide the parties toward this kind of discussion.
Breaking a communication gridlock through mediation
In many disputes, the parties believe that they have said it all. They have tried to communicate for months on end. Resentment has grown. When this happen, the parties can clam up and refuse to say anything else. A good mediator will help the parties break the silence. That professional will understand methods of getting each party to think about the other party’s position. Things can change over the course of a few weeks. Opening back up the lines of communication is highly important in any case.
Keeping the discourse respectful
Money makes all situations difficult. When high dollar amounts are thrown around, parties can become disrespectful. They can get angry in most disputes. A good mediator will guide the ship. The parties will still do the heavy lifting in these situations. The mediator will make sure that things stay on an even keel. They are responsible for handling difficult situations that might arise during the course of communication. Having a professional to help in these tough situations is essential if you are going to get a deal done prior to going to trial.
Mediation is a process that can be more efficient than going to trial. A skilled professional will ensure that even the most conflicted parties are able to communicate their needs and wishes. Opening up these lines of communication through mediation is the first step to reaching a solution.
March 3rd, 2012 — Communication Skills, Conflict Resolution
Arbitration can be a highly effective alternative to costly lawsuits and attempts to take the law into one’s own hands, but in some situations, such as international arbitration, this method of dispute resolution can seem every bit as complex as a lawsuit. However, it’s important that you don’t treat international arbitration any differently than traditional arbitration, because doing so can hinder the effectiveness of your efforts. Although the international context does present unique challenges, the goal of this type of arbitration is the same as all others: finding a mutually acceptable solution to a dispute.
Language Barriers in International Arbitration
If you’re dealing with a language barrier, international arbitration may seem impossible from the start. However, major organizations and governmental bodies that oversee alternative dispute resolution efforts typically have access to translators. Having an appointed translator can provide a significant level of peace of mind, as parties don’t have to worry about trust issues. If a translator is not appointed, hiring a third party translator is still helpful. Career translators operate ethically and accurately, as their careers depend upon their reputations. Having both sides use the same translator wil help reduce the likelihood of miscommunication or bias.
Seeing Eye to Eye
Another factor that has traditionally been a stumbling block in international arbitration processes is distance. It’s difficult to have effective arbitration if the parties literally cannot see eye to eye. Thankfully, this issue is one that technology has solved. Video conferencing software is widely available and in many cases is free, so you can have a face to face meeting no matter what the distance between parties is. When engaging in video conferencing, be sure to set up the room so that there are no distracting background features and so that everyone who is speaking can be seen. It is also important to have a back-up plan in. Ase of technical difficulties. Establishing agreed-upon plans in advance will help prevent confusion and hard feelings later on.
Social Context for Arbitration
Finally, you should be sure that cultural differences won’t threaten the effectiveness of your dispute resolution efforts. Distance is not the only factor that makes international conflict resolution challenging; differences in values and social meaning can also promote misunderstanding. Be sure to explain your desires and put them into your social context. This can help the other party gain perspective and assign more meaningful and relatable value to your demands, increasing the likelihood of compromise.
March 3rd, 2012 — Communication Skills, Conflict Resolution
Although America is widely known for being a litigious society, there would be many more lawsuits if it were not for the variety of alternative dispute resolution methods available through the justice system. Resolving disputes through mediation, settlement conferences and conflict resolution meetings can be effective means to achieve manageable solutions for all parties involved. Additionally, these alternative methods tend to be much less expensive and time-consuming than litigation, which can stretch on for years due to the extensive discovery period and other pre-trial events. And while conflict resolution methods can be highly effective, they aren’t a sure thing; important factors such as communication skills and a willingness to cooperate can make or break an attempt at alternative dispute resolution
Why Communication Skills Matter in Conflict Resolution
Contrary to what you might think, many disputes arise not because two parties know what they each want and are opposed to one another’s opinions, but because the parties don’t really understand one another. When a relationship created by contract or with an implied opposition – insurer vs. insured, for example – parties tend to presume that there will be a conflict and don’t take time to understand the desires of the other party.
In these scenarios, taking the time to clearly communicate what you want can help negotiations move forward in a successful manner. Sometimes, you may realize that there is no conflict in need of resolution, because everything was simply a misunderstanding. In this case, the clear benefit of alternative conflict resolution methods is illustrated; taking a party to court over a simple misunderstanding would be a considerable waste of time and money.
Scope of Communication
Because of the adversarial nature of dispute resolutions and the American legal system as a whole, knowing what the scope of your sharing is among the most important communication skills. While being transparent can help negotiations flow smoothly, you may not want to show your hand completely. In some situations, providing more information can be problematic because it may cause the other party to drive a harder bargain than it might have otherwise.
So where should you cut things off? It’s important to establish boundaries without closing yourself off completely to negotiations. Establish end points – worst case and best case scenarios that you are willing to live with so that the other party can see the issue from your perspective and work toward a mutually beneficial goal.