Conflict Resolution

Co-Mediation: When Two Heads Are Better Than One

Mediators differ in their preferences between mediating alone or with other mediators. While a strong mediator can effectively resolve most disputes, having multiple mediators working together can be advantageous in many circumstances. Co-mediation provides parties with the combination of knowledge, experience, and skills that an effective team…

Mythbusting: Deals are Best Closed Quickly Before They Can Fall Apart

Mediators and negotiators know that not every deal is a good deal and that agreements can quickly fall apart if not carefully thought through. A key step in the mediation process is to ‘reality-test’ outcomes to ensure that they resolve any outstanding issues, leave no lingering questions that could reignite the conflict, and…

What Are the Steps of Mediation?

A mediation session, while being a space where people can tell their own stories, can be a story in itself. And like any good story, it has a beginning, a middle, and an end. Sometimes the story doesn’t go as planned and oftentimes there are detours and unexpected moments. Experienced mediators, like Venn Mediation, provide a structure to…

Creating Value Through Conflict - How Mediation Can Help

When conflicts involve important and urgent matters, the urge to protect one’s interests can actually worsen outcomes and destroy potential value in the negotiation.   A neutral intermediary - like a mediator - can help parties feel secure enough to go beyond their concrete “asks” to seek their underlying interests.   In…

Couples Mediation - Working it Out Instead of Getting Out

All couples fight, especially the ones that love each other. When someone is emotionally invested in a relationship small issues can feel amplified and can easily become big problems if they aren’t addressed. Couples Mediation can help those who want to fix problems before things fall apart. It enhances communication, allows a couple to…

Mediation Styles - Choosing the Right Style for Your Dispute

Mediators are known for their commitment to their craft and to the quality of the service they provide. This has resulted in different schools of thought on how mediators can best serve their clients. The four most common approaches are: Facilitative, Evaluative, Narrative, and Transformative. While these four differ types in various ways, each of…

The Discipline of Mediators: Keeping it in Neutral Without Getting Stalled

Neutrality of the third party is a fundamental value of mediation. So much so that mediators are often referred to as ‘neutrals’. At times, maintaining that neutrality can be challenging, even for the most experienced mediators. Good mediators learn to acknowledge their biases and manage them in order to provide the best service to…

The Value(s) of Mediation

The key values of mediation (self determination, neutrality, confidentiality, safety, and quality) guide the practice of mediators and form the basis for us providing the highest quality service to our clients. Adherence to these core values helps mediators ensure that clients achieve the best possible outcomes.

Mediation - Swapping Middling Middlemen for Maestros

“I spend a lot of time trying to figure out how to get middlemen out of my deals.   Why on earth would I choose to add an intermediary into a negotiation? ” Having a third party like a mediator ‘get in the middle’ of your dispute or deal doesn’t have to make things more complicated. In fact, working with a…

Prenups - What To Do Before You Say "I Do"

Prenuptial agreements (‘prenups’) are uncomfortable to bring up but smart to have. The ‘prenup discussion’ is often awkward, but mediation can make the process easier. With the help of a neutral third party, the couple works together to raise their concerns and interests and to arrive at an outcome that they can both be…

Where do We Go From Here? - A Review of Mediation vs. Arbitration vs. Litigation

When people have disputes that cannot be resolved by negotiation, their first inclination may be to sue the other party in court. Or they may seek alternative dispute resolution processes like mediation or arbitration which engage a neutral third party and gets them to a resolution more quickly. While each option has its pros and cons, mediation…

Workplace Mediation

Conflicts in the workplace are common. What is less common are effective ways for resolving conflicts and corporate cultures that encourage employees to want to resolve those conflicts. Successful companies have clearly defined conflict management systems to address small issues before they become big problems. These systems can include assistance…

Mythbusting - The Goal of Mediation is to Get to a Deal

Many mediators get into the business because they want to help people. And they often see reaching final agreements as the signal that they have achieved this goal. But good mediators learn to overcome that inherent drive to get parties to a deal because they realize that a bad deal can be worse than no deal. Even when parties do not come to an…

Every Journey Starts With a Single Step - Mine Was the MWI Internship

At the ripe age of 36, Venn Mediation co-founder Alnoor Maherali took on his first unpaid internship. The hours were reasonable and the company, MWI, had its own ice cream fridge. But most importantly it gave him the chance to explore a newfound passion in mediation. Which eventually led him to co-founding Venn with Ehsan Ali. This is his journey.

Online Mediation - A Primer

COVID-19 has put a number of dispute resolution mechanisms on hold. But disputes have continued unabated. Alternative dispute resolution (ADR) tools, like mediation, are effective options to resolve conflicts and are flourishing online despite a long-held assumption that they could only be done in-person. While the core principles of mediation…

Sometimes to Come Together, You Need a Little Time Apart - Why We Caucus

Communication between parties is critical to the mediation process, which is why people are sometimes surprised to learn about the possibility of a ‘caucus’ - where the mediator speaks to each party separately. But caucusing can be a very useful tool in the mediator’s kit when the conversation seems stuck or when parties wish to…

Striking out with COVID: A Case Study on Negotiation and Baseball

In both good times and bad, live sporting events serve as a pastime for billions of people. Sports like basketball, hockey, football and baseball are both an emotional escape from reality, and an inspiration when our favorite players and teams succeed. With COVID-19, all of that has been on hiatus until safety conditions can be met to protect the…

Mediation in Dollars and Sense

Conflicts impose many concealed costs in businesses, which can compound over time and damage your organization’s bottom line. As a manager or business leader, even if you are uninterested in the good feelings that mediation can generate, you should be interested in mediation as a highly effective tool for improving your organization’s…

Five Situations You May Not Have Known Could Be Mediated

Mediation is a form of ‘alternative dispute resolution’ (ADR) that can be used to resolve interpersonal and commercial conflicts and disagreements. When most people think of mediation, the first things that come to mind are divorces and international disputes. But mediation actually has many more practical uses, including resolving…

Having Difficult Conversations with Friends

These trying times serve as a reminder that the difficult conversations need to be had and sometimes that means we need a little help.

Why Cancel When You Can Mediate?

Cancel culture has mutated from a response to troubling behavior by otherwise inaccessible celebrities to a form of bullying against teens and youth. In the latter situation, the individual is isolated and ostracized, oftentimes without knowing why and with no way to fix the situation. Mediation is a form of conflict resolution that can help…

Landlord/Tenant Disputes During COVID

The economic fallout from COVID-19 has resulted in many tenants unable to make rent payments to their landlords. Though for some there was an initial reprieve, states are starting to lift their moratoriums on evictions leading to uncertainty and anxiety. If you are a landlord or a tenant, you may be wondering whether you have any option instead of…

Go Towards The Heat

Conflict is a part of life whether we like it or not. And while many people shy away from it, mediators are trained to ‘go towards the heat’. Because every conflict has at least one point of disagreement and emotions (heat) that come with that. Mediators go towards the heat because, rather than viewing conflict as a problem, we see it…

What is Commercial Mediation?

Commercial mediation can help individuals and companies resolve their business-related disputes. The field is broad and includes contractual disputes, conflicts between landlords and tenants, disagreements between business partners, and more. Mediation can help resolve all of these situations - while maintaining parties flexibility and their…

COVID Conflicts

The age of COVID has seen an increase in conflicts - in the workplace, at home, and in business. Venn Mediation’s online facilitative approach is well suited to helping parties work through these issues in a collaborative and productive manner where the parties are in control of the outcome.

Mixed Signals - What Are You Communicating When You Request Mediation?

When you request a mediation, what is it signaling to the other party and could there be implications on the outcome of your negotiation? At Venn Mediation, we view a request to mediate as a sign of intelligence and confidence in your case and believe that you can have a better outcome if you give mediation a try.

Why We Mediate Divorces

Divorce mediation allows couples to define the terms of their divorce amicably and affordably and provides an opportunity to end the marriage with less toxicity. The result is a separation agreement that can be easily turned into a legal document and submitted to the court.

To jot or not – Taking notes during a mediation

We’ve all seen it – whether in movies or in real life.   The courtroom scene; lawyers scribbling notes while the witness gives testimony. Perhaps passing Post-It notes to the lead counsel. Very often this is what we see as being actively engaged while someone is talking.   Mediators vary on whether to take notes or not, and…

Conflict in the Time of COVID

The COVID-19 crisis has added immeasurable stress and anxiety to everyday life -  whether your business is closed or still open and whether your loved ones are near or far away.   This is exponentially true in the case of conflicts.   A business or interpersonal dispute – a source of stress under normal circumstances – can…

Mediation 1-2-3

So, you are not sure if mediation is for you and you are curious about the mediation process. Before starting, it is important to understand the principles of mediation - that it is a safe, confidential, and voluntary process in which parties are treated fairly and equally, and given the chance to determine the outcome of their dispute.

Raison D'être - Why We Mediate

Our passion for our work comes from the knowledge that justice is often complicated. And finding the right path for our clients requires a blend of empathy, open-mindedness and strong listening skills.

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