From Skepticism to Enthusiasm – What Makes Face-to-Face Mediators Change Their Minds About Online Mediation in 1 Hour

Paddy O’Connor and David Feingold practice mediation respectively in Ireland and California. When they signed up for our August 19 1-hour training “Learn to Mediate Online with PC Mac and Mobile Devices”, they were curious – and probably a bit skeptical – about online mediation.

Our training agenda was simple, pragmatic.

  • What makes online mediation similar to – and different from – face-to-face mediation
  • Which cases are suitable for online mediation
  • What you need to do before an online mediation starts
  • Which additional clauses you should add to your “Agreement to Mediate”
  • LIVE demo of online mediation with: joint and private sessions; info sharing (pictures, documents and video); annotation; and online whiteboard
  • How to integrate mediation by video, phone, email, and face-to-face
  • Why your mediation skills and experience are more important than technology
  • What to look for in a video conferencing software for your online mediation practice

Paddy and David participated in our training with other mediators from Canada, Austria and Barbados.

Snapshot 1 (8-19-2013 9-48 AM)

After our training, Paddy sent me this email:

Hi Giuseppe

Many thanks for the YouTube recording of today’s training.

I was blown away by the experience and it certainly opened my mind as to the possibilities of using online approaches in my mediation practice.

With renewed thanks.

Paddy O’Connor

And David posted this message on our LinkedIn Group Virtual Mediation Lab

I also participated in Giuseppe’s program, and have been a fan of using remote video conferencing as part of face to face meditations. The key is the technology. If it is seamless (as it was with this program), purely online mediations may well be adopted more widely.

What made an experienced face-to-face mediators like Paddy and David change their minds about online mediation after only one hour? Just their willingness to learn more about it, and see it “in action”.