Here at ACCORD, we offer our community members a unique opportunity to communicate in a different way through our use of alternative dispute resolution or ADR services. These can help bridge the gap between two or more people who are having a dispute. Our center offers many services to assist in a variety of situations.
So what causes a dispute in the first place? According to a Mediator with over twenty five years of experience, it is difficult for individuals to disagree in a constructive manner, often causing minor disagreements to develop into deeper conflicts. These deeper conflicts can develop into serious misunderstandings and over time, a mere difference of opinion becomes a much larger issue.
Mediation and other ADR services can help individuals, family members, and even organizations to move forward during times of anger, conflict, and uncomfortable disagreements. Successful mediation takes place when communication barriers are challenged and common ground can be identified. This allows for disputants to then work on developing solutions in a more peaceful way.
Our mediators are trained to identify emotions, topics, ideas, common interests, concerns and the needs of those in dispute in order to allow participants the opportunity to overcome differences through similarities. We must allow people to reconnect and move toward a mutually endurable solution that all parties can live with and with great hope, thrive from. We must encourage an atmosphere of empathy and understanding to help the divided to unite.
We encourage a respectful approach to seeking mutuality and solving fundamental disagreements that promote peace. This may not be possible in all instances, but our mediators work diligently to overcome communication roadblocks that at the very least, may help parties to better tolerate existing differences.
Mediation is a self-driven, and self-determined process, allowing the parties to communicate in their own language, at their own pace, and on their terms. From that standpoint, the possibilities are limitless. Mediators work to open the doors for communication, and from there we may see the potential to develop an agreement that will work for that particular family, individual, or organization.
As mediators, we must be ever present to listen fully, without judgement, and try to understand our client’s point of view and encourage them to do the same. Our role is to help people to disagree more fully and more respectfully. People come to us because they are stuck. They may feel trapped, cornered, or confined. Through mediation and other ADR services, we can help create a space that allows for better understanding to take place.