ADR, particularly in mediation is a civilised way of resolving a range of differences and conflicts which requires a professional and practical mediator with a good understanding of the PULSE process to help parties to resolve their disputes within hours after a pre-meeting has been held. This is a much better way of settling differences than resorting to a cohesive adversarial approach that will not benefit the parties in the long run.
The problem or issue which is not resolved satisfactorily by parties themselves remains a conflict that lays dormant only for a while. It is for that reason our world remains confused and the people thereof, as many people and nations have buried unresolved issues awaiting a spark for explosion into a full-blown conflict with the tendency to affect not only the disputing parties but also other individuals or countries directly or indirectly.
In this 21st century, it is appropriate in a more civilized way for parties to learn how to use mediation in communities, educational institutions, at the workplace, in the family and nationwide to resolve their differences using tools that will prevent differences from escalating into conflict by talking, because where people refuse to talk there will be no solution.
This talking must be based on principles that must be learnt and adapted for a cooperative co-existence such as being gentle, the ability to listen to one another, being honest in dealing with the issues at stake, being open and staying focus on the specific issues to reach a mutually beneficial consensus.
These principles coupled with an excellent communication process will help parties in very interdependent relationships to resolve their differences without a third party, using self-mediation with a set of cardinal rules that will govern the conversation between parties. Individuals interested in settling their differences personally must understand that they must stick to the entire process of talking without walking away or engaging in the use of cohesive powers (power-plays) to get the other party to compromise to their positions. If parties remain incapable of resolving their differences through self -mediation, the next stage will be to opt for leadership/managerial mediation which hardly fails although mediators at this level might not be professionals who have undergone at least a minimum of 36 hours of training to acquire core competencies for practice. However, the managerial or leadership mediation will involve a third party impartial who has the necessary knowledge and skills to facilitate a resolution between the parties.
For good corporate governance to be innovatively introduced into an organisation, it will be proper for the board of directors, and leadership at all levels to learn wide organisational methods of resolving differences without the presence of a professional facilitator/mediator for internal disputes. It is even more relevant that in this age and time of negotiation that these skills be acquired by principals who sit at the negotiating table so that negotiations can evolve from the old bargaining style into an interest negotiation where parties have requisite knowledge of brainstorming to generate several options that will aid them to reach a mutually beneficial agreement.
One of the vital benefits of mediation is the fact that parties get to explore the underlying interest of the positions they hold and now have the opportunity to set criteria in selecting that option which will guide parties to a collective solution. The satisfaction that comes with that solution is the act of ownership of the resolution, where both parties feel that they have reached a resolution that satisfies their interests. Such solutions are usually lasting and foster cordial relationships rather than taking the adversarial approach where parties are exposed to acrimony and loss of time and money at the law courts.
Therefore, it is imperative for communities, organisations and even state institutions to learn and adopt these preventive methodologies instead of resolving to professional and high-cost dispute resolution systems where even though a pronouncement is made, the matters remain a washed and some parties remain aggrieved over a long period especially in civil cases such as divorce, land disputes, maritime and border disputes, aviation disputes, educational and labour matters.