Meet Bec, the Everyday Mediator

When others run away from conflict, I am drawn towards it, to dissect, analyse and overcome the everyday misunderstandings that lead to simmering tensions and raging disputes. I have always been a peace maker. I am always the one to try and find common ground, to negotiate and find a way to please everyone.

Working as a litigation lawyer this sometimes baffled my more adversarial colleagues. Don’t get me wrong, I can and do advocate fiercely when it comes to the crunch, and I can defend my position until the bitter end; but wherever possible I like to find a consensus and only fight over what is really in dispute. I would rather deliver a concise, laser-focussed argument about the things that really matter than spend half my time in petty point scoring and one-upmanship.

I became a lawyer in 2003, working first at a plaintiff personal injury firm and later at a generalist firm. I defined myself as a litigator – it didn’t really matter what the dispute was, I’d litigate it.  After moving to Melbourne from Sydney, in 2011 I went to work at State Trustees, where I was working with vulnerable Victorians, fighting to protect not only their assets, but their dignity and wellbeing.

A lot of the work I was doing at State Trustees was in and around will disputes. Our clients were often grieving over the death of a loved one, while at the same time doing battle over the estate. I believe I saw the best and the worst of people in those cases. Anger and pain radiated off those clients, and underlying that was often a feeling of helplessness and futility. Many clients felt there was nothing they could do to protect and preserve their loved one’s memory, or indeed to control what was happening to them. They were stuck on a merry-go-round of lawyers, courts and expert reports.

What people want during conflict

What I learned during my years as a litigation lawyer was that:

  • Most people want to be heard;
  • Most people want to have their experiences and feelings acknowledged and validated; and
  • Most people want to feel in control of their future.

Mediation gives them this opportunity to have all of this and more. Finally, here was something I could do to help relieve the tension felt by parties to court cases. Instead of having their cases drawn out for another 6, 12, 18 months, here was a way to short circuit the whole process.

And that is how I fell in love with mediation.

Rebecca is an excellent communicator

Rebecca is an excellent communicator, she understands situations/explanations quickly and is able to explain in detail and in layman’s terms where she can value add, help you resolve a situation, be totally impartial, and able to bring a swift conclusion to a difficult situation bringing a win-win to both sides.

Marsha Byron, Owner, Designer Showcase

Your first step should be contacting Rebecca

If you think that a mediator could help you reach a legal resolution (and reduce your stress while saving legal costs) or a court orders you to mediation, your first step should be contacting Rebecca. Then the process will flow and your situation gets resolved.

Melinda Samson, Owner, Click-Winning Content

 

An awesome web guide

[The Handy Guide to Mediation] is an awesome web guide that will answer many questions about Mediation. It is an excellent resource for those who have a mediation scheduled or planned as a phase in their legal matter.

 

 

 

 

James E. Novak, Defence Attorney, Arizona USA

A breath of fresh air at a difficult time

Bec, can I say a massive thank you for all that you have done during what has been a rather difficult time for me. Having met and discussed the stages of mediation with you was a breath of fresh air. You were very calm and thorough, and made me feel that I was on track in terms of the whole mediation process. You helped me to be more effective in calm and meaningful communication, highlighting what I had been doing right, and guiding me through area’s that I didn’t know and needed assistance and advice with.

You have helped me to promote and encourage better dialogue and attitudes between [my former wife and me].  I would happily recommend you to anyone who is going through the separation and mediation process, and wish you all the future success that you deserve.

Jason Hanmer