Most disputes are dealt with as a three-stage-exercise. They start with power, then move on to rights (laws, rules precedents etc.), and then lastly interests. This invites the escalation of conflict that happens – only to settle after all kinds of resources have been wasted (about 92% of litigated disputes are settled “on the courtroom steps”. Why not try settle right at the beginning?
We’re entering a new era where meeting interests, needs, and wants is first prize, and therefore the obvious place to start. Ideas for settlement that ideally get created by the parties themselves, is the modern approach that comes before litigation, arbitration, or the use of power when necessary.
“Being smart is better than being right!”
The days of power-wielding are numbered: command-and-control dispute resolution and the resulting win/lose scenarios are short-sighted with poor outcomes.
Likewise, settlements based on rights are no indication of mutual agreement: stability and continuity are not guaranteed by answering to rights alone. Rules dictate outcomes but rules hardly address the real and underlying interests, wants, and needs of both parties. That can only happen when people are willing to negotiate conflict resourcefully.
The human condition of our times is one that calls for a meeting of minds supported by durable and robust agreements.
I specialise in Mediation, Assisted Negotiation, Alternative Dispute Resolution and the implementation of Conflict Management Systems in the Sectional Title environment in Cape Town.
My passion for Conflict Management comes from the exponential effects that enhance lives, communities, workplaces, and society in general. That comes around to further enrich all of us.
What a great way to contribute to a slightly better world!
When times are tough, constant conflict may be good politics, but in the real world, cooperation works better. After all, nobody’s right all the time, and a broken clock is right twice a day
~ Bill Clinton, 42nd President of the United States.