Frequently asked Questions
Here I show you a list of questions often posed by clients and definitely worth answering. Maybe you have a question about mediation, contract management or conduct of negotiations? Then do not hesitate to contact me.
Is it basically possible to say that mediation is better than a trial?
Yes, that is almost always true. You save time and money. The procedure is confidential. Mediation demonstrates its qualities best when the focus lies on the relationship between the opponents. That occurs almost always in the business section, be it between customer and supplier or between colleagues. Mediation offers big opportunities. However, it does not make any sense, when one part is actually not interested in an agreement. But that happens very rarely.
How comes mediation became more and more important during the last years?
The new mediation law, passed in July 2012, regulates that the mediation has to be considered before civil court action. This is to bring together the parties as well as to find a mutual agreement. The mediation’s success rate of 80% surely got about.
What is the difference between a trial and mediation?
The judge decides by virtue of legal or contractual claim basis. The facts of the case are arranged to fit to it. The parties’ interests do not matter at all. The mediator, however, focuses on exact these needs and interests. Based on these, the participants elaborate solutions with the help of the expert. A mediator does not provide his own elaborated solutions. The parties are not forced to arrange with a judgment but they decide themselves whether the developed solution is beneficial for everyone.
How can mediation agreements be legally established?
The enforcement is less important, as the result are based on agreement. However, there are possibilities to get an enforceable title.
Am I at risk not to demand rights during mediation, because they are unknown to me?
For economically important issues especially, I recommend that consultants, e.g. lawyers or tax advisors, assist the parties and check the agreement. If required, they can also take part in the mediation sessions. If a party is not advised appropriately, the mediator is obliged to point out that the agreement could be examined by an external consultant.
How much does mediation cost?
The costs of mediation are typically calculated from the amount of time needed. Hourly rates or daily rates are common. For mediation leads to results quickly, you have to invest notably less money in the proceedings as compared to a lawsuit or arbitration. In addition, cost related to alienated clients, failed projects or quarrelling departments can be avoided.
Is it possible to include mediation already in the contract with regard to future conflicts?
Yes and you should! In case of a dispute it is often difficult to agree on the way of conflict resolution. Thus unwanted practices get a chance. Boilerplates for conflict management through mediation can be found here.
What is the main case of application of your commercial project support?
A medium-sized company has got a job, which exceeds the usual dimensions. It is crucial to implement it successfully. Ideally, it is considered as soon as possible – already when designing the contract – that the essential aspects are regulated properly. The implementation of the project in the company itself is also a crucial part of the foundation of success. Often, external support is unfortunately only thought of when there are already claims of or against the contract partner and when the overview gets lost. Professional contract management and claim management are often worth their salt.
Are you also available for dealing with fundamental business processes?
Yes, if they match my core competences, namely contract management, contractual risk assessment, commercial project management, negotiation management and conflict management. The basic attitude and the aspects of the mediation process lead to creative and consent based further development even in this field of work and they are superior to many other basic approaches. The basis is built upon the knowledge and the experience of the employees which have to be enhanced efficiently.
What has to be conveyed in a good workshop for contract law?
It has to be practice-oriented. It has to be conveyed which regulations really matter and how they have to be arranged. It is easy to redesign a draft contract, given by the client, with many words so that it is impeccable. But how will the client react to that? The whole trick is rather to change the crucial aspects with only a few comments, so that the risks – as far as they are not avoidable – are reasonably divided and limited.
How do your negotiation workshops differ from others?
My understanding of negotiations is strongly influenced by the mediating attitude and the principle of the Harvard concept for negotiations. I am convinced that negotiation results which have a winner and a loser (so called “win-lose” results), in the long run always lead to a “lose-lose” result. You always meet twice and even allegedly more powerful market players are in a mutual dependency with their partners. It is worth it for every party to achieve “win-win” results through the use of creative methods for finding solutions. Only in so doing successful long-term partnerships can be established.
Why do I need a workshop on conflict management?
There is an impressive survey by the KPMG on the expenses that are caused by conflicts in companies. Lost clients, bad project results, dismissals, fluctuation costs – to name only a few examples. Conflicts are like tumors which eat away at the results of companies as well as at the mental constitution of all participants. It is a huge profit for companies and for every single one to have ways and means of avoiding the emergence of these tumors, of arresting their growth and finally of removing them.