The paper "The Influence of Mediator Style in Achieving Consensus between Conflicting Parties" is a great example of management coursework. Court settlements are often expensive and require a relatively long time to settle even a simple dispute thus alternative dispute resolution methods are more preferable. Mediation can help resolve disagreements between parties in less time and economically feasible for both parties (Butler 2004, p. 2). However, there are a number of factors that affect the outcome of the mediation and one of the primary concerns is the influence of mediator’ s style in achieving consensus between disagreeing parties.
For instance, the choice of style depends on the type of conflict (Hope 2010, p. 33) thus selecting the right style is critical. In the neighbourhood mediation scenario undertaken in the workshops, selecting the right style will determine the success of mediation between the church and nearby community particularly on critical issues involving noise pollution, operating hours, parking space, and security. The mediator on this particular case should recognize the church position over the issue and the reasons communities opposed half-way houses. More importantly, the mediator should be aware of his own capacity and the style suited for his personality and experience (Hope 2010, p. 33).
And since mediation is more of an art than science, the mediator must determine the right approach in building consensus and settling the conflict completely (Clare 2003, p. 90). The church position over the issue is firm as it intends to rent space to Neighbourhood Care Inc regardless of opposition. Moreover, the church views some of the community members as selfish individuals of different faith preventing a very important service to the community.
The community, on the other hand, particularly those that are residing near the church generally complain about everything and establishing facilities for mentally disadvantaged may lead to greater complaint and protest. Although the church believed that there is no reason to sit down and talk with the inconsiderate neighbourhood, it had agreed to settle the conflict by sending its minister to the Neighbourhood Justice Centre. The minister, representative of the neighbours and the chosen mediator discusses the issues concerning the operation of the half-way house and other important points being presented by the community neighbourhood. Generally, the church wants to operate from 9:00 in the morning up to 9:00 in the evening seven days a week and offer services for mental problems including drug-related mental illness.
Moreover, it intends to offer parking facilities for clients and visitors during the same period. However, the community demands the church to take measures regarding noise pollution and other disruptions from its operation such as street parking and operating hours in particular. Clearly, the neighbourhood wants to ensure peace and security while the church wanted to pursue its noble cause.
The mediator handling the cases must achieve a consensus on several points presented by using an appropriate style suited for the parties’ mindset (Clare 2003, p. 90). Moreover, it is important that he should be neutral and impartial during the entire mediation process (Cooley 2006, p. 190). Two distinct models or styles may be employed in this case such as facilitative and evaluative. Normally, parties may opt for a facilitative form of mediation since the nature of intervention in this approach is minimal and allows the parties themselves to negotiate with each other.
In contrast, an evaluative style disallows parties to directly negotiate and instead rely on the evaluation of the mediator of the merits and demerits of their arguments (Strasser & Randolph 2004, p. 66). The mediator can opt for facilitative mediation style but he may find it difficult to maintain such an approach since there are times that he will have to do some evaluative activities as the mediation unfold. These activities may include re-structuring the bargaining agenda in order to enable close cooperation between parties, assessments of positions of each party on the issue being discussed in order for both parties better understand their situation and make some useful suggestions for parties to be able to consider other possible options relevant to the case (Abramson 2004, p. 141).
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