When I am at networking events or social occasions I am often asked, after ten years as a litigation lawyer, why I decided to pursue mediation.
As with most things in life, there are many factors that I took into consideration. But really at the heart of my decision was my belief in the value and the power of mediation. I went into the law to help people and over the years I have found that mediation is one of the most helpful processes for the client.
I found over my years as a lawyer is there are two things I can do to really help my clients: One is to enable and empower them to tell their own story in their own words and to identify what is important to them; and the second thing I can do is to help and guide them to find a way to resolve the conflict. This means they can then move on with their life without forever feeling resentment and embittered about the process and about the outcome.
Rarely are people happy at the end of court trial. I have found that mediation is one of the few processes to combine those two opportunities in one package. For these reasons, I really wanted to focus on helping people to tell their story, and helping people find their own solutions to their problems.
In mediation, the parties decide what’s important and what’s on the agenda. Rather than having a judge or arbiter telling them what they’re going to do with their life. Ideally in mediation, they find their own solutions and their own compromises. These are the big reasons behind why I decided to start RCB Mediation Services and why I decided not to go into practice for myself or to look for another job as a lawyer.