Being an effective mediator is not unlike being a good therapist. Listening skills, the ability to clarify, restate, and even challenge what a client says is a part of being a good mediator.
Mediators, like therapists, do not take sides. Whereas therapy is designed to treat the symptoms of the problem, when the problem involves family, neighbor, employment, or societal conflict, mediation can help to resolve the problem, thus empowering clients on either side of the problem to move forward with their lives.
Choosing a mediator with a background in psychology means you have chosen someone who knows the value of listening with compassion and understanding. The art of impartiality and compassion is one that while learned, it is one that comes naturally to those who are drawn to the helping professions.
A good mediator, like a good therapist draws upon theory and practice in order to meet the needs of clients. Being stuck in one technique is ineffective when dealing with the complexities of human conflict.
A good mediator sees the clients as persons, and not simply a problem to be resolved.
Mediate: Problem Solved.