Mediation: The art of a deal

July 28, 2023

Seeing success through a non-legal eyes

Mediation in the UK is voluntary and used as a tool in dispute resolution to help remove the heat of settlement discussions. To re-focus these discussions and redefine the parties' idea of success in negotiation.

Parties may come into mediation looking at the case through the eyes of their lawyers and stick close to their legal advice in a dispute. The ‘win/lose’ dichotomy needs to change to one of compromise - an outcome where both parties ‘win’ because they have settled their case. This is the challenge in Mediation.

Enhancing the chances of a successful mediation

There are several factors that contribute to a successful outcome:

  • True decision-makers.  Mediation is informal, and sometimes deals can be made between the true decision-makers outside the meeting room when lawyers are not present.
  • Lawyers are vital.  A lawyer will be able to explain the strength and weaknesses of arguments of  their respective client’s positions.
  • Timing. Mediation must take place after all the information has been disclosed, before the parties become too entrenched and before the high costs of litigation have been incurred.
  • Mindset of the parties. All must come together with the goal of resolving the conflict.


Getting the deal done is an art, not a science. Mediation can support parties to come to a mutual resolution of their dispute, where the parties move on from a ‘win/lose’ dichotomy to a ‘win/win’ outcome through compromise.

This blog was inspired by an article in The Gard

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