Who is a mediator?
A mediator is a person who helps to settle a dispute or create an agreement when there is a conflict between two or more people or groups by acting as an intermediary for those parties. This process of mediating is called mediation. In this process, the mediator acts as an impartial third party. Mediation is typically less formal and usually involves suggestions for settling differences, as opposed to binding decisions.
There are many desired qualities a mediator should possess. For instance, mediators gain these qualities through their experience. A mediator can also analyze themselves and prepare a do’s and don’t’s list during mediation. There are numerous articles that talk about the good qualities of a mediator. But hardly any article talks about the qualities a mediator should not possess at any cost. Therefore, the researcher has made an attempt to lay down certain qualities which a mediator should not possess. This list revolves around why a mediator should not possess the following qualities. This list is not exhaustive but general in nature.
Bad Qualities in a Mediator
A mediator should not possess the following qualities:
1. A mediator should not have an unrealistic approach
We all are aware that nothing in this world is perfect. It can be difficult for some mediators to accept. Mediators having an unrealistic approach to the dispute can lead to disappointment among both the mediating parties.
2. A mediator should not lose focus
Mediators’ imaginative and introspective nature doesn’t always lend itself to productivity. Most mediators become frustrated by how difficult things become at times. During the dispute, they keep on losing focus which may frustrate the parties as well. Everyone wants a focused and understanding mediator. A mediator should stay focused at all times.
3. A mediator should not be emotional
As human beings, it’s difficult to act like a robot with no feelings. Still the mediator has to remain neutral. During the process, they can’t get swayed by their emotions. A mediator should not be emotionally vulnerable. It is one of the qualities that mediators should not possess. They should be firm and capable of setting boundaries.
4. A mediator should not be a people pleasure
Being a mediator may become burdensome at times. But the mediator should not become desperate to please every party. Mediators should not take any comments personally. The desire to please every person involved in the dispute will drain their energy.
5 .A mediator should not be self-critical
Not every mediation is going to be easy. Even if mediation fails or parties fail to reconcile, the mediator should not take it personally. A mediator should not blame themselves in such a scenario. Being self-critical can make them feel underconfident.
6. A mediator should not take the entire credit
If a mediation process goes well, the mediator should not jump to take all the credit. He must give adequate credit to the parties for a successful mediation.
It was stated at the beginning itself that this list is not exhaustive but general in nature. Every mediator has their own style of mediating which they learn through their experiences. Firstly, a mediator should not lose focus during the process. Secondly, he should not be emotional. Thirdly, he should not be desperate to please all the parties. Parties play a major role in mediation. The mediator is in a facilitative position so he should not take the entire credit if mediation succeeds. This blog was an attempt to lay down general qualities a mediator should not possess. These qualities would hamper the entire process of mediation.
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