The various ideas presented in Getting Past No, highlight how the mediator must use a number of tools / tactics to be able to effectively resolve the dispute. What happens is when two parties are in any kind of dispute, they more than likely are displaying large amounts of negative emotions towards each other. At which point, both parties will become even more set in the view that they are correct in their position. Once this perception takes place, is when both parties are unwilling to resolve the dispute, as the overall negative emotions are keeping each party far apart. Once mediation takes place, the negative emotions will more than likely come out from both sides. Where, each party is trying to paint the other side, as the one who is responsible for the impasse. This makes the job of mediator more difficult, as they must overcome these walls of negative emotions, to find out what are the stumbling blocks of the dispute. The different principals that were outlined in the book are effective at overcoming these emotional barriers. This is because they work off of two main principals: flexibility and impartiality.
The way that the ideas use flexibility, is they provide the mediator with a broad general overview, as to what should be their state of mind during the proceedings. Where, they are monitoring and identifying various issues that could create an impasse. To bring mediation to a successful conclusion requires: that the mediator use flexibility, by being able to identify key points of contention and areas that could be used to bridge the divide. Without any kind of flexibility to adapt to the different situations, the mediator would have more challenges in overcoming the negative emotions.
Impartiality is highlighted throughout the process, as the various procedures and tools are used to instill this upon both parties. Where, the mediator will listen and agree with the points that are made by both parties. However, they will also use these tools to show that neither side is 100% right, by indirectly showing that the situation could have been handled better. This causes both parties, to feel as if the mediator is impartial, while helping them to think about the current position that they have taken. Once this occurs, the mediator is more effective at encouraging both sides to find an agreeable solution. At which point, the chances increase that some kind of acceptable settlement will be reached.
What this shows, is that the ideas presented in Getting Past No are an effective way of being able to overcome the different emotions that both parties will have, as a part of the mediation process. At which point, the mediator can be able to identify the root cause of the dispute and recommend a solution that is acceptable to both sides. This is significant, because it shows how there are standard tools and tactics that are effective during mediation or any kind of negotiation. Those who can utilize these tools will be able to effectively reach out to both parties, during the most heated disputes. At which point, the chances increase that an acceptable compromise will be reached.
Clearly, the mediation process is an effective way of settling a variety of disputes. However, in order for the process to work effectively certain attributes must be shown at all times these include: do not overreact, do not quarrel, do not rebuff ideas, do not push and do not intensify the situation. These different factors are important to remember, because they can work as a guide in helping to reduce the overall amounts of emotions that are tied to the situation. At which point, coming to a mutual understanding between both parties is easier, as the mediator can use logic to reason with both sides. This is significant, because during the mediation process, both parties will believe that their position is correct, based upon the underlying feelings that they have about a particular situation. At which point, the odds of resolving the dispute become more difficult. As these negative emotions are pushing both parties, not seek some kind of middle ground to end the dispute. For the mediator, their job is to break through these emotional walls that exist. In book Getting Past No, the authors discuss how these obstacles can be overcome by using the above attributes. This is significant, because during mediation process, the mediator must have more finesse than the average person. Where, the recommendations of the mediator are voluntary with both sides. As result, their job is to entice both parties to accept the agreement out of their own best interest. During the process, this is problematic because both parties will begin to vent their various emotions to the mediator. In order to maintain control, the mediator must appear to be unbiased. The way that this is accomplished is by listening to both side and then agreeing with them through the use of the yes with a but tactic. Once this occurs, is when these emotional barriers can begin to be reduced. As the use of this technique is changing the overall focus of the mediation, with the other party beginning to see the situation beyond their own personal views. At which point, both sides are willing to accept that they are right to a certain extent, while ceding on some points in order to reach a common ground. This is significant, because it shows how a mediator must play the role of psychologist / unbiased party to effectively resolve different disputes. As a result, the ideas presented in the book can help to improve the effectiveness of the mediator, by using proven techniques to overcome the various obstacles.
Ury, William. Getting Past No. (2005)
Blue Book Citation Guide http://lib.law.washington.edu/ref/bluebook101.html