I help people to have difficult conversations.  My role is to make sure that both, or all, voices are heard and understood and that we find a way forward that is fully thought out and agreed.  I work hard to ensure that mediation is fair and systematic.  I also help people find solutions.

Mediation is unfamiliar to many people.  The process works like this:

Pre-mediation – I meet both parties individually (a party can be more than one person, for example two people from an organisation) to hear their perspectives and answer any questions about mediation.  This discussion usually lasts about an hour.

Joint session – We meet together.  I begin by asking both parties to say what needs to be dealt with and what they would like out of mediation.  This helps to set the agenda for the rest of the session.

Explore the issues – We then discuss things in detail.  It is important that each person hears what the other has to say and that disagreements are not swept under the carpet.  We need to fully understand the sources of conflict before looking for solutions.   I sometimes spend time with each party separately.

Consider options – As we talk, possibilities for the future will emerge.  We call these ‘options’ and I help people to consider them in detail.  If one option is not acceptable, we look for another, and so on, until we have genuine consensus.

Record agreement – If a way forward has been agreed, I put this in writing to make sure that all the details are clear and agreed.  Where lawyers are present they will help with this.

It will be clear from this brief overview that mediation can be quite time-consuming.

  • Commercial and business disputes are generally dealt with in a single day. This allows us to find a practical solution and produce a clear, written outcome. Generally solicitors or other advisors are present
  • Workplace mediation typically lasts a morning or an afternoon.  It is usual to have a review, 6-8 weeks later, to ensure that things are running smoothly
  • In family mediation we generally meet 3 or 4 times, with each session lasting 1 to 2 hours.  This allows financial information to be gathered and options to be tested between meetings
  • mediation can be tailored to other settings on a case-by-case basis


Please call 07779 577019 for a free consultation, or email charlie@charlieirvinemediation.co.uk

Here is one client’s view of what worked in mediation and why:
1. having separate rooms – avoided awkward encounters
2. having a chance to explain my situation in detail – although I knew the mediator would not take sides, it was reassuring for me to explain the whole history (perhaps I felt less personal anxiety given the long history of the situation)
3. it was helpful to be on an equal footing – this helped me to cope with the accusations of bullying
4. the information on employment law provided during the mediation – this was important to decision making
5. the advice of the mediator from previous experience – e.g. over the probable reaction to an accusation of ….
6. the calm, unhurried way in which the mediation was conducted – important because of the very stressful nature of the mediation



I am a member of the Scottish Mediation Register

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