We’re often contacted by people who class themselves as trained mediators but they have a case which has gone wrong - or they don’t have the confidence to deal with it.
There’s a huge difference between attending a mediation awareness course to actually training properly in these skills.
The bare minimum requirement for any Civil Mediation Council (CMC) accredited training is 40 hours and successfully passing an assessment to demonstrate that you can effectively apply the skills you’ve learned.
Unfortunately, at the time of writing, mediation is an unregulated industry, so some training accreditation isn’t through the CMC or another actual professional mediation body.
Contrary to what many may believe, ACAS aren’t an accredited mediation body - they are conciliators , which is signficantly different - read our other blog here.
Our CMC accredited workplace mediator training is intense, tiring and challenging. Those who pass the full five day programme do so because they have demonstrated their skills and the required capability to go out there and mediate.
We’re approached regularly by organisations to conduct a half day mediation awareness course for their staff, which we do gladly - but having completed this, they won’t be trained mediators.
We even run a two day programme for managers, enabling them to have ‘difficult’ conversations with employees. They will learn some truly great techniques - but likewise, they still won’t be trained mediators.
Our internal mediator programme is three very full and intensive days - attendees are trained mediators but their skills are not assessed.
The final two days of our CMC accredited external mediator programme is purely about practical application of mediation skills - the things that really matter when people apply the skills that they have acquired in the first three days.
They are also thoroughly assessed to a high standard, ensuring they’re ‘safe’ to mediate!
Passing the assessment is a real achievement - it shows exceptionally high standards of proficiency.
These are invaluable life skills, which cannot be taught or learnt in a few hours or a day and anybody even attempting mediation without these skills can make things a whole lot worse.
We have to remember we’re here to help people in very difficult circumstances - the least we can do is to ensure we are equipped with the relevant skills to do so.
If you'd like to discuss how mediation skills can transform you and your organisation please feel free to access my diary and choose a time to suit - I'd love to chat!