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Mediation of conflicts, negotiation of interests and peacemakers to create a win-win situation

Mediation of conflicts, negotiation of interests and peacemakers to create a win-win situation

Text: Zhang Shumei, Chen Zhenji “Ming Pao”

(Hong Kong News) The TV series “Second Reconciliation” reproduces how mediation resolves various disputes. In some cases, after mediation, the two parties shook hands and made peace, easing tensions. When there is a conflict in real life, what is the benefit of asking a “peacemaker” for help? How to rebuild a broken relationship?

Recourse to court relationship turns hostile

“When there is a conflict, if you talk directly to the other party, you will inevitably get angry and just discuss who is right and who is wrong, and who is responsible. It is easy to get stuck.” Su Wenjie, chairman of the Hong Kong Mediation and Arbitration Center who has been an accredited mediator for 15 years, pointed out that the mediator As an independent and impartial third party, without deciding who is right and who is wrong, he will find a solution that everyone accepts, so as to calm the whole thing down.

The mediator in the TV series is like a professional “peacemaker”, resolving disputes over water leakage and noise, complaints about food delivery delays, and commercial disputes among neighbors.

Su Wenjie pointed out that in real life, mediation is also applicable to many fields, such as labor disputes, dealing with work-related injuries at home; traffic accidents, car collision insurance matters, etc.; in terms of interpersonal relationships, it is mostly family mediation, dealing with campus and workplace Disputes, such as when a couple divorces, and the two parties disagree on child custody, visitation rights, alimony, etc., family mediators can intervene to help both parties find the best solution for the child’s growth based on the interests of the children.

When the dispute persists, many people immediately think of going to court. Su Wenjie, who works as a lawyer himself, said that the courts have certain restrictions on handling disputes. The waiting list for judicial cases is generally longer, and the cost of hiring a lawyer is relatively high. In comparison, mediation requires less time and money.

Both parties relieve doubts and reduce disputes

“(After mediation) the relationship between the two parties can still be maintained. In court, one side must win and one side loses at the same time. The relationship between the two parties is very hostile; Adversarial, and the end result is a win-win solution.”

He cited a workplace mediation case as an example. A hearing-impaired employee refused to renew his contract after expiry. He thought it was disability discrimination by the employer and criticized the employer on social media. The employer believed that not renewing the contract was purely a business decision, not discrimination , accusing the other party of defamation.

“Employees are not granted contract renewals, and they intuitively think that the other party is discriminating, and immediately write some radical remarks in the eyes of the employer on social media, which damages the employer’s willingness to communicate. The employer immediately accuses the other party of defamation, and his focus is no longer on explaining the whole thing. Things, the two sides quickly went to the point of pointing fingers at each other.”

Later, the two parties sat down at the mediation table, and the employer had the opportunity to explain the reasons for not renewing the contract, and the employee could also express his difficulties. Although the employee’s contract was not renewed in the end, the employer was willing to help him write a letter of recommendation, pay him a payment in lieu of notice as appropriate, and also assist him in changing jobs within the organization. ruling”.

deal with emotions first

Su Wenjie noticed that the relationship between the two parties has improved significantly during the whole process, because the doubts in the bottom of my heart have been relieved, and disputes have been reduced by jointly establishing a plan. “The spirit of mediation is to find a solution that everyone accepts. Negotiate”.

But reaching a settlement at the mediation table is anything but easy.

“Controversies between people are mostly dominated by emotions.

Especially in family mediation cases. If the mood is relieved,

In fact, there is a lot of room for discussion.”

When dealing with these cases, mediators often use soft communication skills to deal with emotions first, and then deal with matters, allowing both parties to express their inner concerns, and then help them establish a feasible solution.

The reason why conflicts occur is usually because both parties only see things from their own point of view and hold their own opinions; the mediation process makes both parties think differently, try to stand on the other side’s point of view, and understand each other.

Sometimes verbal expressions are too direct and forget to consider the feelings of the other party, which will cause estrangement. For example, the sentence “Don’t even think about leaving work if you don’t finish today’s work” may not be wrong in content, but there is something wrong with the way of expression; The difference is almost the same, but it can greatly change the other party’s perception.”

Therefore, when the mediator repeats the content of the two parties, they will avoid using negative words and use neutral or positive words so as not to affect the atmosphere of the peace talks.

If you speak without considering the other person’s feelings during a conflict, or if you only look at things from your own perspective, you will only be deadlocked.

Social Worker Li Qianting

Social Worker Li Qianting

Su Wenjie, Chairman of Hong Kong Mediation and Arbitration Center

Untie the knot

Reconcile and mediate grievances

The two sides reached a consensus, does it mean that the event ended perfectly?

In many cases, disputes are resolved, but the knot is hard to solve, the relationship between the two parties has not been fully repaired, and the heart is left with permanent trauma.

Gu Dezhao, who played the role of the founder of the Hong Kong Mediation Center in “Reconciliation in the Future”, has a dialogue: “What most people are doing is mediation. What I hope to achieve is reconciliation.” This is the central idea expressed by “Reconciliation Mediation”.

Li Qianting, a registered social worker, pointed out that reconciliation is a mediation method, often called reconciliation mediation, which is mostly used in schools and social welfare circles to deal with interpersonal conflicts and help repair relationships. “The concept is very similar to mediation, but our focus is not only on resolving disputes, but also on reaching a settlement in the relationship between the two parties.”

Victims fear reprisals

If the conflict occurs with someone who is unknown or has a shallow relationship, mediation is the best result; but if it is a long-term relationship with classmates, friends, neighbors, etc., “reconciliation” becomes important. “For example, conflicts in schools, classmates know each other, It may be in the same class or at the same level, and they meet every day. If the grievances and grievances cannot be resolved and the relationship can be repaired, it will have a great impact on study and life.” To reconcile and mediate, one party needs to sincerely apologize, and the other party needs to learn to forgive.

Li Qianting shared a school bullying case. Three students bullied a classmate from Form 1 to Form 3. They made fun of the victim, sent him to do errands and did not pay after shopping. Once they played in the classroom, causing the victim to be injured. The bullying incident was revealed only after being sent to the doctor.

The victim was fine, but the parents were shocked when they heard about it, and immediately called the police, “Looking back at this incident, the victim was bullied for 3 years, which is a long-term injury; but if the police deal with it, the perpetrator may be sentenced to ordinary assault at most. Or the Superintendent’s warning.”

This is just a punitive justice, that is, using punishment to pay for wrongdoing, but in the process, it fails to effectively deal with the needs and feelings of the victim, making the victim even fear of retaliation, so they are often in a state of panic. After discussing with the school, social workers and parents, it was decided to try to deal with it through reconciliation and mediation.

Participation of both parties in expressing appeals

At the beginning, the three perpetrators had a frivolous attitude and failed to truly recognize their mistakes; but when the victims expressed their grievances, their parents felt angry, dissatisfied, and even blamed themselves for their negligence and incompetence, which caused insomnia and affected their daily lives, and the perpetrators really realized what happened Serious impact.

She pointed out that the three people witnessed and heard the harm suffered by the victims and their families, which made them ashamed of what they had done, and they reflected on what they had done, and finally sincerely apologized to each other, and at the same time received corresponding punishment as a warning.

“After the victim accepted the apology, he was referred to a social worker for counseling, which strengthened his self-confidence and social skills, and gradually became cheerful.”

She said that reconciliation and mediation is one of the ways to solve the problem, and she hopes to give the parties one more choice and deal with the conflict with a positive attitude. “Different from the mediation meeting, the two parties first meet to express their positions and appeals, and then meet separately when necessary; the reconciliation meeting will first have the host meet with both parties separately to understand the incident, including the impact and harm suffered by the victims. The attitude of the perpetrator, the remorse, and the willingness of both parties to reconcile.”

After the assessment was considered appropriate, a meeting was arranged for the two parties, with the aim of creating a platform for both parties to express themselves. “We advocate the concept of ‘reconciliation and justice’, and hope that both parties will participate in the process, so that victims can express their feelings and appeals.”

misleading teens

Adolescents often make mistakes, and they may not understand the serious impact of them. Therefore, they need to recognize their mistakes; and the victim needs to be healed by expressing his feelings. For example, long-term bullying has caused huge psychological trauma, and it is easier to let go of it during the confession process . “If the victim dare not face it, dare not reconcile with the other party, and choose to escape, the results may not be ideal.”

Regain the relationship – Conflicts between classmates not only need to resolve the grievances, but also repair the relationship, otherwise it will have a great impact on study and life.

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