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This one- or two-day event on Solution Focused mediation is an experiential and practice based workshop which will provide a sound framework for understanding and using Solution Focused techniques in Mediation and Dispute Resolution.

This course will develop an understanding of the solution focused approach and the practice skills needed to apply it.  It will support mediators in helping disputing parties (clients) to define achievable goals, set tasks, build autonomy and measure progress.  The workshop will also explore the various available options when practitioners feel stuck or experience setbacks in the work with parties.

Ideally, this solution focused mediation workshop takes place over two days. It can also be presented over one day, but that gives less time for consolidation and practice (typically, we do case-work on day two). The group will be actively involved in setting the pace and the programme, particularly on day two. The first day covers Solution Focused thinking and practice in some depth and the development of SF skills. The second day will be used to expand these skills and apply them in mediation, using case examples supplied by the attendees.

The workshop can also be broken down and presented as a series of two hour sessions weekly, over a period of 6-8 weeks.

Contents

  • Introduction and expectations
  • What exactly is Solution Focused?
  • How working in a Solution Focused way is more effective
  • (Outline and brief history of the Solution Focused approaches)
  • Conflict dynamics, emotions, thinking and behaviour
  • How the ‘solution’ becomes part of the problem
  • Changing the focus: from problems to solutions
  • Defining the working relationship
  • Turning problems into goals
  • Breaking down harmful beliefs
  • Setting up the milestones, scaling and measuring progress
  • The miracle question and other devices
  • The initial consultation, reframing, challenging and normalising
  • The use of presupposition, recognising and amplifying change
  • Finding exceptions to the problem
  • Identifying and building on client resources
  • Treating each session as unique
  • Follow-up sessions and progress
  • Eliciting reports of positive change
  • The relationship: Customer, Complainant or Visitor?
  • Tasking and homework assignments
  • Planning for ‘setbacks’ and keeping the progress going
  • Enhancing client autonomy.

Objectives

This course is designed to enable attendees to:

Develop an understanding of the solution focused approach
Practice the skills needed to apply it
Learn how to help parties define achievable goals
Identify what is already working in disputants’ lives
Set tasks to build client (and mediator) autonomy
Measure progress and help the client identify with it
Provide a plan for when you are ‘stumped’
Anticipate the setbacks which can result in frustration or failure.

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