Civil Negotiation and Mediation Blog

Preparing for Mediation: The Checklist

Posted by Nancy Hudgins on Mon, May 14, 2012
pre-mediation checklist

Here’s a checklist for preparing for mediation.  This checklist is based on the premise that since you know that more than 98% of cases do NOT go to trial, you’ll set aside the time to maximize your ability to both claim the most value and create the most value for your clients at mediation.  Many of these items will seem like second nature to you, but cut me a little slack, and I’ll see if I can provide some value to you.

  1. Listen to your client
  2. Review the facts and law
  3. Gather documents
  4. Calculate damages
  5. Draft the mediation brief
  6. Match the mediator to the case
  7. Evaluate your BATNA and their BATNA
  8. Appraise the Zone of Possible Agreement
  9. Prepare visual aids and distributables
  10. Role play: have a colleague take your side while you take the other side’s side
  11. Create value (with strategies to make the pie larger)
  12. Exploit your differences: trade items of lesser value to you but greater value to the other side
  13. Strategize for the joint session
  14. Script your moves
  15. Line up your negotiation strategies
  16. Anticipate their negotiation strategies
  17. Assess the best “process” for mediation success
  18. Adjust your attitude to be positive
  19. Prepare your client
  20. Check in with the other side or the mediator or both prior to the mediation

Now you’re good to go.

For a downloadable version of this checklist, with more detail, click here.