Key Properties of the Ideal Mediator

Topics: Mediation

After spending time learning about the Chinese culture my next move would be setting up a meeting with my Chinese counterparts. My first step would be having a mutual friend/business partner make an introduction with my counterparts to make them feel more comfortable. Transparency would be key; I would make available as much information in advance as possible. The information would cover information about me and my organization, the topic(s) we would discuss, and general information. The information I provide would help set up the meeting with the correct individuals.

Usually Chinese businessmen/businesswomen sometime wait to confirm meeting within a few days. Providing as much documentation as possible would help.

American and Chinese negotiators have unique methods to accomplish their ultimate goal of a deal. These methods differ, Chinese negotiators have a relationship orientated way of thinking where as American are more information orientated. American negotiators exchange information directly and Chinese negotiators are more indirectly, and finally the style of the Chinese negotiators will differ from the American.

Chinese business people listen more than they talk, that would result in non-Chinese negotiators assuming that the Chinese are delaying and playing games. Which they aren’t, first they think it’s rude to interrupt but also they are absorbing information about the personalities on the other side and the issues at hand. American negotiation tends to have more of a back-and-forth dialogue. American negotiations are direct and to the point of the negotiations. On the other side, Chinese business people tend to have negotiations that are more like an exchange of information between the two parties in hopes of a long term partnership.

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This is their formal process of getting to know the other side. Americans are inclined to be time sensitive where as Chinese negotiators are ready to negotiate for long periods of time. America is a low context society, which means we rely on verbal communication.

China, on the other hand, does not utilize verbal as its main communication technique compared to America. China is a high context society. They usually do say much to make it clear what they are meaning. As a result, when Chinese and American negotiators sit at the same negotiation table they must put an effort to understand the other culture. When American negotiation with Chinese negotiators they must read their body language and when using verbal communication avoid saying the word no. Chinese negotiators could find it disrespectful and/or rude.   Mediation provides organizations or individuals the opportunity to resolve their issues before an independent/neutral third-party the mediator. Mediation is less expensive, quicker, confidential, and provides better results. Lawsuits usually takes months or even years, whereas mediation can take days or weeks. Mediations provides a sensible timeframe for solving disputes. Since lawsuits can require many lawyers for an extended time period it can become expensive.

Mediation are significantly less expensive with a shorter time. Lawsuit become public, but mediation is mostly confidential. That’s extremely important since it won’t result in any public records, transcripts, or evidence that would be revealed and lead to other issues. Some organizations decide on mediation for the sole purpose of confidentially. Finally, since we don’t have a true winner or loser in mediation the results tend to have better outcomes. In mediation we won’t have admission of fault and the outcome is agreed upon both sides which results in more pleased parties. Patience empathetic, trustworthily, and non judgmental are all key attributes to an ideal mediator. A mediator would lead the two side into the following 6 stages of mediation:

  • Stage 1: Mediator Opening Statement: The mediator introduces everyone and describes the goals of the mediation and motivates both side to cooperate.
  • Stage 2: Parties Opening Statements: Both side in their own words will describe the issue at hand and give suggestion for resolution. At this stage when one is talking the other side stays silence.
  • Stage 3: Dialogue: Both parties will talk about the issue at hand and attempt to determine what the issue is.
  • Stage 4: Private Caucus: Both side meet privately with the mediator to discus their strengths and weaknesses of offer new suggestions
  • Stage 5: Negotiation: At this stage the mediator will have both parties negotiate with each other.
  • Stage 6: Closure: This is the final stage of mediation. Main provisions will be added if both side reached an agreement.

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Key Properties of the Ideal Mediator. (2022, Apr 25). Retrieved from

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