Mediator Roles and Function

Facilitator – Convening, referring and moderating the
Meeting in a neutral and evenhanded manner.
Communicator – Through probing, questioning, restating and summarizing, mediators clarify poor communications and ensure that each disputant understands what the other is saying.
Educator – Teaches process by instructing the parties in how to negotiate more constructively. Teaches substance by helping the parties become more educated about their dispute, their respective interests and the other side’s perceptions about the problem.
Reconciliator – Using techniques that manage destructive emotions to reconcile and refocus the disputants.
Resource expander – If an expert in the disputed subject matter, the mediator may provide insight that can assist the disputants in overcoming an impasse.
Reality Tester and Devil’s Advocate – As an objective, neutral sounding board, the mediator can prevent disputants and their advocates from dangerously over crediting their own points of view.
Guardian of Details – In the heat of imminent resolution, disputants often overlook the details necessary for the implementation and durability of the agreement. A mediator will monitor the details and bring to the disputants’ attention to issues that many impede implementation of an emerging agreement.