- 24 (or 30 or 40) hours of training is all you need to become a mediator -- No, it’s not. [...] Beyond that first mediation training, it takes additional education and advanced training, including supervision by experienced practitioners over the course of dozens of cases, to develop the capacity to mediate effectively.
- Lawyers are already qualified to mediate by virtue of their profession and need little if any mediation training -- As a matter of fact, most people - and that includes lawyers - have little if any formal training in negotiation theory and skills, despite the fact that negotiating is something we all do daily. Moreover, the kind of negotiation that many lawyers are familiar with is traditional distributive, value-claiming bargaining and not the integrative, value-creating negotiation that mediation offers.
- Lawyers always make the best mediators -- Exceptional mediators come from a wide range of occupations and backgrounds. [...] No one occupation serves as automatic guarantee of mediation talent.
- Online training in mediation is a great way to get certified as a mediator -- Online training for mediators warrants a special caveat. I have said this before and it is worth repeating: online mediation training which purports to prepare students for face-to-face mediation is not worth your time and money.
- I can make big money as a mediator-right after I finish my 30-hour training -- No, you can’t. Can you succeed in a career in mediation? Yes. But it takes hard work, effort, a sound business and marketing plan, a little luck, and a substantial investment in time.
Fellow mediation blogger Tammy Lenski debunks one more:
- I’m a certified mediator -- You are, are you? Are you sure? Says who? [...] The certificate does not mean you’re certified. It means you’re certificated.
Related post: "Best Careers" Include Mediators.
As the field of Organizational Ombudsing matures into a profession, it will likely need to debunk the same myths. To wit:
- Training alone is not be sufficient to become an Ombuds;
- Lawyers [or any others] are not qualified simply by dint of their profession to be Ombuds;
- Lawyers do not make the best Ombuds;
- On-line training will not be the best way to become certificated as an Ombuds;
- New Ombuds generally don't make big money; and
- Certification is still a ways off.