A divorce mediator has many responsibilities. Their primary responsibility is to facilitate communication and negotiation throughout the divorce process. They do this by remaining neutral and focusing on keeping the lines of communication open during what can be one of the most stressful periods of each spouses life. Following are some specific skills required of successful divorce mediators.
1. Rapport. The first skill of a divorce mediator is to build rapport. Rapport between all the parties creates a relationship of understanding, empathy, and trust. A sense of rapport can encourage parties to communicate fully with the mediator, often providing the divorce mediator with the information needed to find a mutually acceptable settlement.
2. Creativity. Another key talent of successful mediators is creativity—the ability to generate novel solutions. This ability clearly springs from a focus on interests. Only by understanding each party’s interests can a mediator generate creative solutions that satisfy each party. “It is vitally important to be able to think of new ways of dealing with issues,” one mediator told me, “inventing options that acknowledge feelings, perceptions, as well as hurts that might otherwise block meaningful and fair resolution.”
3. Patience. It is also important that your mediator be patient, giving you and your opponent as much time as you need to fully express emotions and ideas, while at the same time focusing intently on the primary task—dispute resolution. The mediator can present opposing views and generate options, they teach you how to think from the other’s point of view and understand all ramifications. One step at the time.