How do you feel about the prospective mediator?
Trustworthiness is demonstrated by a person’s actions, words, demeanor, and dress. First impressions are crucial. Mannerisms, vocal tone, as well as facial expression and general behavior often help determine whether or not a person is trustworthy.
Impartiality & Neutrality
It is imperative from the beginning, that you feel the mediator is impartial and is not an advocate for either of you. A mediator:
- Does not make decisions for the parties.
- Does not impose a personal agenda on the process.
- Does not judge who is right or who is wrong.
- Directs his or her attention equally to both parties to the conflict.
- Discloses any prior knowledge of the conflict with the parties.
- Understands each person has their own viable view of the conflict.
A mediator who is truly impartial will have your trust and confidence. Although the mediator should be keenly interested in providing both an appropriate environment and a neutral process in which to work things out, he or she must have no personal or vested interest in the outcome of the mediation. To further support impartiality, the mediator must always ensure that one party does not overpower another party. The mediator’s function is to conduct a balanced dialogue within a neutral process that is fair to both parties.
Previously in the Preparing for Divorce Mediation Series: How to Choose a Mediator and How a Mediator Should Act – Sincerity
Next in the Preparing for Divorce Mediation Series: How to Choose a Mediator and How a Mediator Should Act – Focusing
Click here for a Full Summary of the Preparing for Divorce Mediation Series.