Attention Attorneys In Mediation: Don’t Just Phone It In.

December 13, 2018By Bill RatliffUncategorized

If I’m being honest, I cringe every time I conduct a mediation where the defendant’s party representative participates by telephone, or not at all. Unfortunately, I see this happening more and more often. Having said this, I can think of several plausible reasons why client representatives wouldn’t attend a mediation — including The representative is … Read More

Winning Mediations “On Purpose”

November 20, 2018By Bill RatliffUncategorized

I recently bought an amazing 2-CD release by sports psychologist Kevin Elko entitled Win On Purpose. A longtime consultant to Nick Saban and numerous other college and professional football coaches, Elko is renowned for his success in teaching and motivating athletes to reach their highest potential. Elko’s presentation inspired me to consider how litigators in … Read More

How To Serve As A Better Counselor In Mediations

October 18, 2018By Bill RatliffUncategorized

Many of the lawyers reading this use letterhead that identifies them as “counselor.” Though the term as used by lawyers may not be identical to the way it’s intended in the counseling community, I find it fascinating how many of us in the profession hold ourselves out to be counselors. When I think of a … Read More

Applying The Golden Rule In Mediation

September 27, 2018By Bill RatliffUncategorized

If you’re like me, you were first taught The Golden Rule at a young age. I remember hearing it from my parents, at church and at school. Here’s what “Wikipedia” has to say about it: “The Golden Rule is the principle of treating others as one would wish to be treated. It is a maxim … Read More

Effectively Making Yourself Understood In Mediations

August 30, 2018By Bill RatliffUncategorized

In my last post, I mentioned that I enjoy reading the work of former FBI hostage negotiator, and now CEO & Founder of the Black Swan Group, Chris Voss. In his blog, The Edge, he writes frequently about effective communication techniques and tactics. It’s a given that communicating effectively is a fundamental requirement of our … Read More

Using “Tactical Empathy” In Mediations

August 9, 2018By Bill RatliffUncategorized

One author I enjoy reading is former FBI hostage negotiator, and now CEO & Founder of the Black Swan Group, Chris Voss. He’s has been blogging on his area of expertise since 2013. (If you’re a frequent flyer, you might be interested in this post: Negotiating a Seat on a Plane When There Isn’t One). … Read More

Consider Sharing Your Position Statement

July 19, 2018By Bill RatliffUncategorized

Old habits die hard. Most litigators were trained in the school of thought that says mediation statements should not be shared. At least, that’s my experience. I rarely see advocates in mediations sharing their position statements with the other side — and yes, I understand the various reasons for not sharing. That said, I’ve seen … Read More

Listen. JUST Listen.

June 14, 2018By Bill RatliffUncategorized

Good advice whether you’re in mediation or not. In my last post, I talked about the common qualities of good listeners; and how effective, intentional listening involves your ears, your eyes, your mind, your heart and your undivided attention. I also talked the fundamental need to be heard — which we all share. That said, … Read More

Can You Hear Me Now?

May 10, 2018By Bill RatliffUncategorized

The importance of listening during mediations. You remember the guy who repeatedly asked the headline’s question in the Verizon ad campaign, years ago? Whether or not you liked it, the fact that Sprint hired the guy should tell you how effective that campaign was. What’s more, seeing him again on TV got me thinking about … Read More