A New Model of Intra-Corporate Conflict Resolution

Corporate Conflict Resolution

Executive turnover is costly.  Signing bonuses, search fees, severance packages, and much more bring estimates of the turnover cost of a “C-suite” employee to $1.5 million. Consulting firms estimate the cost at 1.5 to 3 times annual salary, or more.Yet executives don’t always mesh well.  Personality clashes, disagreements on corporate strategy, or the corporate governance …

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The Riskin Grid: Mediator Orientations

Riskin Grid - ADR Times

The classic definition of a mediator is one who, without decision-making authority, assists in the resolution of a dispute between two or more others,  Mediation is everywhere; moms do it for their kids, kids do it for their friends, bosses do it for their workers, and so on. Have you tried to calm an argument …

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The Predictability of Distributive Bargaining

Negotiation Dance

This article examines the predictability of distributive bargaining between two negotiators, and conditions that might distort that predictability. It also introduces the important concept of the ‘negotiation dance,’ which is basic to the study of the negotiation process.Negotiation is a social act; of communication and discovery between two or more people, with the goal of …

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Decreasing the Risk of Legal Malpractice Claims

Reduce Legal Malpractice Claims

The American Bar Association (ABA) conducts extensive survey on legal malpractice claims every four years. The survey concludes that every practicing lawyer is potentially at risk for legal malpractice. It was once believed that solo practitioners were at the highest risk, however, research has found that lawyers at small, medium, and large law firms are …

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The Courtroom vs. The Boxing Ring

The Courtroom vs. The Boxing Ring

Two key points: First, to be successful, a boxer must first become desensitized to the effects of inflicting injury on others. Secondly, the boxer must accept personal risk with every fight. As a litigation attorney and a writer, the boxing world is full of parallels to my profession. Many key psychological aspects of boxing are very similar to that of litigation.

Mediator’s Opening Statement

Mediator's Opening Statement

Mike was excited.  The classes were over at last, the internship was done, and he’d been approved for the civil panel. Today was his first solo mediation. He opened the door and strode in.  The lawyers and their clients looked up expectantly at Mike. He froze.  What should he say next?Where we begin a journey …

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Peace Palace in The Hague

Peace Palace in The Hague

I recently visited the Peace Palace in The Hague.  The structure and layout of the building is a testament to its unique purpose.  Andrew Carnegie contributed the funds to build the palace under two conditions: that it contain the largest international law library in the world, and that each member country contribute gifts to decorate …

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Perceptual Bias and The Frustrated Negotiator

Perceptual Bias

It’s after lunch, and Fred’s feeling pretty good as he sorts through today’s mail.  Ah! There it is, Tom Smith’s response to Fred’s settlement offer in Ajax Accounting v. Johnston. It’s a solid offer, and Fred smiles as he thinks about the vacation he’s going to take during what are now the two weeks set …

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Mediation Confidentiality and its Jurisdictional Challenges

Mediation Confidentiality & Jurisdictional Challenges

Any lawyer who has taken a case to mediation knows – at least in some vague, general way – that settlement discussions occurring during the mediation enjoy some level of confidentiality protection. Mediators themselves, of course, may have some greater understanding of what is and is not confidential during the mediation process, but even a …

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Emotions In Mediation

Emotions in Mediation

Bob had been Fred’s client for a long time.  Normally, he was low-key and easy-going. Not today.  He was angry and it showed.  His wife Keiko sat teary-eyed and sniffling next to him.‘Fred, I want you to make George Stevens’ life a misery, do you hear me?” “I hear you, Bob. But I don’t get …

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