Monday, July 14, 2008

Hercules the Mediator

Do you know the myth of Hercules and the Nemian Lion? I heard it the other day (listening to a story CD in the car with my family) and it’s a story that speaks to our work as mediators.

Here’s the story: Hercules is tasked to slay the Nemain Lion whose hide cannot be cut. So, Hercules wrestles the lion and squeezes it to death. With the lion dead, Hercules tries to cut the hide, but cannot. So, and here’s the mediator part, he uses the claws of the lion to cut the hide.

The lesson for Hercules and for us as mediators is that the ability to achieve a result will come from the participants at mediation (for Hercules, from the lion). Thus, it is our job to help facilitate the finding of that which will lead to settlement and/or resolution. Can we help uncover some underlying strength in participants that will empower them to make a settlement decision? And, how do we do so?

One key aspect is to learn about the people at mediation. They are not just plaintiff or defendant or insurance professional. They are people and if you learn more about them, what makes them tick, this will lead to what you need to do to help them cut through the hide and decide.

Go Hercules !

1 comment:

Erik Mazzone said...

Hey Roy, cool blog. I added you to my blogroll of NC legal blogs!