Mindfulness & Body Language

Greetings from the 'Land Down Under'!

While traveling in Australia, primarily for holidays, those who know me know I always manage to do some work too! With that said, last week I gave a talk at Southern Cross University's Lismore campus which was also broadcasted to two other campuses (hooray for technology!).

The topic was on basic nonverbal verbal communication- how to use it properly and also how to identify certain gestures used by others. I will not go into the specifics other than emphasizing I speak from the perspective of identifying gestures as it not being definitive but rather based on my understanding of nonverbal communication from my experiences, my research and the research conducted by others. Be weary if those who say, "Liars do this," or "When someone does this, it means that."

While giving the talk and speaking with people afterwards, it is always fun to see how they will stop mid sentence to re-arrange their arms or their posture and laugh while saying "oops". Although this particular talk was for a general audience, I am a firm believer that regardless of our roles in conflict resolution including as mediators, negotiators, ombudsman, or coaches we must be aware of what it is we are doing. Do you turn towards each party while they are speaking? Do we rest our head on our hands if we are not interested in what is being said? Do we notice the person touching the back of their neck during each time a certain topic is discussed?

When looking at nonverbal communication while engaging in the particular work you do in conflict resolution, the following might help when looking within:

1) Are you aware that you are encoding a nonverbal message?

2) Is the message being decoded they way you intended?

In the process of identifying the nonverbal messages of others, ask yourself:

1) Am I picking up the nonverbal cues of the party(s)?

2) Am I doing it accurately?

3) If yes to either of those, what do I do next?

I plan to right more about this in future posts, so hopefully you find this of interest to yourself and our field!

Enjoy, and for now- G'day!


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Podcast Series: #4 JAMS Foundation Grants


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Episode #4


JAMS Foundation Grants




Join host Jeff Thompson and guest Jay Welsh of the JAMS Foundation as they discuss the recent grant to study diversity in Conflict Resolution field as well as an overview of the JAMS Foundation Grants Program.

Next episode: Richard Rubenstein

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"What's Happening" September 20th, 2010



Is the Conflict Specialist a leader?
Ran Kuttner- Parallel to the emergence of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) as a field, in the last few decades there is a growing body of literature on “Leadership” as a separate field with a set of skills and traits that can be taught. This is not the only resemblance to the ADR field; themes advanced in leadership literature and trainings have a lot in common with those advanced in ADR:

1. The shift away from hierarchical structures
2. Globalization and the understanding of human interconnectedness,
3. Giving priority to communication and collaboration rather than placing the individual who pursues to advance his own understanding of the preferred outcomes.
4. The importance of collaborative problem-solving, the ability to suspend judgment and appreciate diverse views, the constructive role of conflict, teambuilding, consensus-building, etc.
5. The understanding of the leader and the conflict specialist as supporters, setting the conditions for others to thrive.

Leaders are encouraged to implement skills that are in many cases akin to those advanced by conflict specialists. Much has been written in the ADR literature on the intersection of management skills and conflict resolutions skills, exploring how the ideas and tools taught and implemented by the conflict specialist can assist managers in their work...
[
Read more]


NPR Job Posting Highlights Duties of News Ombuds
Tom Kosakowski-
National Public Radio is soliciting applications for the position of Ombudsman. This is one of the most high-profile News Ombuds in the U.S., and not the type of position for which there is often a public search. The job posting highlights the similarities and differences between Organizational Ombuds and News Ombuds.

POSITION DESCRIPTION:The primary role of NPR’s Ombudsman is to “explain NPR to the listeners and the listeners to NPR.” The Ombudsman investigates complaints and acts as an independent reporter between listeners and NPR. S/he is the arbiter of fairness, balance and accuracy in NPR’s news reporting.
Cops Called To Sto-Rox High School When Mediation Goes Bad
Shouting, Pushing Breaks Out During Group Session With 12 Girls
STOWE TOWNSHIP, Pa. -- Police officers were called to Sto-Rox High School after reports of a large disturbance and a fight involving female students Tuesday morning.


We created this podcast series to offer members of the ADRhub community another interactive opportunity to get the lastest news including research, trainings, jobs, conferences and books.

This podcast series will offer both audio episodes as well as video and allow you to download each episode so you can listen and view them on the go.


More News, Events, Articles & Jobs
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Podcast Episode #2


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Episode #2


Mediation Business Summit



Join host Jeff Thompson and guest Amanda Bucklow (yes again!) as they discuss upcoming Mediation Business Summit taking place, online, September 16 through September 21st.



Upcoming episodes include William Mercer on Spirituality and Mediation; The JAMS Foundation Grant Program; and Richard Rubernstein of the Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution at George Mason University.



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Never forget




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Conflict Resolution For Kids


I found this today and thought it would be a fun read for those mediators out their with children!

From
www.Babble.com
Recently, my friend's four-year-old had a preschool classmate over for a play date. All was copasetic until his pal grabbed a much-loved toy helicopter and took off across the living room...

1) Make a Plan
If talking doesn't work, break all the toys.

2) Redirect
Are you really angry with him for taking the toy or are you really upset about the Big Bank Bail Out, or the Mortage Crisis?

3) Have Realistic Expectations
Mikey not really be in the mood to say sorry... especially since there is a distinct smell coming from his diaper.

4) Focus on Feelings & Relationships
"So it you sound like you are really angry about the blocks being knocked over. It also sounds like having a relationship with Mr. Elephant is important to you."

5) Obedience Isn't The Goal
"Say you are sorry because I said so or I am taking away Mr. Elephant. 1... 2...."

Ok, thats my attempt at humor. The title of the tips are real but I added in the comedic descriptions.
Read the real article [here].
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New Podcast Series!


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London based commercial mediator Amanda Bucklow* joins host Jeff Thompson as they discuss the story revolving around the proposed mosque to be built near Ground Zero in downtown Manhattan.

This episode includes President Obama's approach as described in Lee Jay Berman's blog post [read here]; John Turley's comments in regards to the Archbishop in NYC offering 'mediation' [read here] as well as other comments.

Listen above or download the mp3 at the bottom.

* Amanda's blog is considered a 'must read' by Jeff Thompson. Visit her blog 'The Mediation Times' [here].

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New Podcast Series



London based commercial mediator Amanda Bucklow* joins host Jeff Thompson as they discuss the story revolving around the proposed mosque to be built near Ground Zero in downtown Manhattan.

This episode includes President Obama's approach as described in Lee Jay Berman's blog post [read here]; John Turley's comments in regards to the Archbishop in NYC offering 'mediation' [read here] as well as other comments.

Listen above or download the mp3 at the bottom.

* Amanda's blog is considered a 'must read' by Jeff Thompson. Visit her blog 'The Mediation Times' [here].

Download by clicking the image below:


read more "New Podcast Series"

Blogging on the go!

This is a pic of my iPad and the new wireless/bluetooth keyboard I just purchased to type longer blog


postings. That's if I ever actually type a long blog posting!

Of course the point of buying the iPad is for it's mobility, size and lack of keyboard but for longer typing and traveling, now (I think) I do not have to bring my laptop along with me. I have a trip coming up in a couple weeks so lets so how it goes according to plan!

Now my blogging on the go is much easier as I downloaded an app titled BlogPress and as you can see below, the keyboard is very sleek and super portable- like the iPad!



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National Academy of Distinguished Neutrals

Did anyone else know about this? Is there a need- especially when we have IMI, CPR-ADR, & JAMS among others?

Here's one answer:

“Most long-standing ADR organizations charge corporations thousands of dollars in fees simply for access to a list such as ours,” commented Darren Lee, Executive Director of NADN. “We believe that companies should seriously consider whether such ‘payments to the middle-man’ are money well-spent..."

Any readers out there part of the panel?

Wondering if you qualify? Read the qualifications [here].

Admittedly it is probably a pet-peeve of mine but I found this in the qualifications section (bold added by me):

Only attorneys in good standing with their State Bar associations are generally considered eligible.

From the press release:

"Membership to the Academy is by invitation-only, with a strict peer-nomination vote and extensive client interview vetting procedure, intended to ensure that only the top 5% of qualifying practitioners in any state are invited to join the “ADR All-Stars” roster."

Who is doing this vetting process and what are their qualifications? Read about the executive committee [here].

At least they are using the word All-Star and not 'certified'!

Full press release below:

(Press Release)

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The National Academy of Distinguished Neutrals (NADN) is a new national association whose membership consists of mediators and arbitrators distinguished by their hands-on experience in the field of civil and commercial conflict resolution. NADN was established in 2009 following a conference of the committees of 5 regional ADR (Alternative Dispute Resolution) associations from Florida, California, Georgia, North Carolina and Tennessee.

As of August 2010, the association has over 600 top-tier ADR attorneys and judges confirmed as charter members across more than 40 states, making it the largest online roster of experienced neutrals in the nation. Membership to the Academy is by invitation-only, with a strict peer-nomination vote and extensive client interview vetting procedure, intended to ensure that only the top 5% of qualifying practitioners in any state are invited to join the “ADR All-Stars” roster.

The Academy’s newly launched website at www.NADN.org is certain to make life easier for litigators, corporate counsel, legal staff or business owners - anyone, in fact, who wishes to avoid the ever-escalating cost of litigation. NADN.org allows visitors direct access to the panel of experienced ADR attorneys and charges no referral or administration fees whatsoever. Nor does the Academy take any percentage of the neutrals’ mediation or arbitration fees - a traditional industry-wide surcharge which often gets passed on to the parties in terms of elevated rates.

“Most long-standing ADR organizations charge corporations thousands of dollars in fees simply for access to a list such as ours,” commented Darren Lee, Executive Director of NADN. “We believe that companies should seriously consider whether such ‘payments to the middle-man’ are money well-spent. Our approach has been quite different. Firstly, we sort the wheat from the chaif - identifying the mediation or arbitration attorneys who are most widely in-demand amongst litigators within each state. Secondly, we’ve invited these experienced neutrals to join the Academy and publish their bios, case expertise and calendars online. Then we stand back and get out of the way - allowing direct contact with the members through the website, keeping costs to a minimum for all parties.”

Website visitors are able to quickly find a suitable neutral by identifying their preferred state, dispute type or other preferences. They can then review a roster of the most highly-rated local neutrals, all of whom welcome direct enquiries. A large majority of members also publish their availability calendars online for the benefit of clients, allowing visitors to “call-or-click” to make direct contact with the members’ office staff.

“Since the launch of the Florida chapter of NADN in 2006, we’ve heard from literally hundreds of firms saying how useful they find the websites, particularly the online-calendaring functionality,” said Mr. Lee. “We’ve made it very simple for visitors to make direct contact with resolution experts on our roster, using the Neutral Search tool. More than 22,000 attorneys, counsel and legal staff have scheduled their mediation appointments online with our charter members across Florida, California, Georgia, North Carolina and Tennessee over the last 2 years.”

Likely due to the current economy, an increasing number of corporations are seeking to mediate or arbitrate disputes, rather than launching expensive litigation. “All of our attorney-mediators are able to assist corporate counsel with pre-suit mediations. We also have over 80 and counting of the nation’s most experienced commercial arbitrators, all of whom are available to oversee arbitrations directly between in-house counsel, if the matter demands a binding decision.”
The Academy is set to expand the roster of recognized neutrals into 2011, including formal new chapters already underway in several states including Texas, Illinois, New York and Washington.

For further info regarding the National Academy of Distinguished Neutrals, please contact Darren Lee, Exec. Director (director@nadn.org) or visit www.NADN.org/about
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