Mediation is the simplest and most obvious way to resolve a dispute. Mediation makes sense for many reasons. It's economical; it reduces the emotional distress inherent in any real dispute; it's quick and easy to start the process; moreover, it's the most obvious way that two or more sides with a dispute should resolve that dispute – sit down and talk about it. Mediation is voluntary. Everything that happens in mediation is consensual by the parties and everything that is shared in mediation may be confidential. The parties maintain control over the negotiation process unlike arbitration or trial where the parties lose control over the process to the judge, jury, or the arbitrator. The parties can withdraw from mediation at any time.
Effective mediation brings together parties who are truly interested in resolving a dispute. They come to the session with authority to resolve the case.
They come with a willingness to truly listen to the concerns and interests of the other side. Once this happens an experienced mediator can bring the parties together for a negotiated settlement.
An effective mediator can identify important issues in the dispute and create effective ways of bringing the parties closer together. By narrowing the issues the gap in the dispute becomes narrower and the opportunity for resolution becomes more apparent.