A mediator’s services are required when the negotiations come to nothing, get locked in a stalemate or may not even start. Mediation is much more efficient than ordinary negotiations because:
- the mediator is in charge of the mediation procedure ensuring that it leads to the problem solving. The entire procedure is focused on the search of a mutually acceptable solution;
- during the mediation procedure the parties describe the dispute in great detail to an outside person who listens to them and asks clarifying questions without trying to decide who is right or wrong. The parties also listen to each other without any interruptions or refutation of what they hear. It helps the parties to take a look at the problem through the eyes of their opponent and remove the seeming contradictions;
- the mediator is not a party to the dispute and, accordingly, he/she may look at it “from the outside” and have a clearer picture than the parties;
- the presence of an outsider trusted and highly esteemed by both disputants helps to make the dialogue between them more productive;
- only the mediator has an exhaustive information about the dispute, purposes and interests of the parties. He/she may meet each party separately. At such private meetings the parties share with him/her the information, which is usually not disclosed to the other party, the judge or the arbitrator. Thanks to this knowledge, the mediator is often the only person seeing “the intersections” of the parties’ interests (the conditions acceptable for conclusion of an agreement).