• Styles of Mediation

Lol Sorensen utilizes techniques from a variety of mediation styles including the following:

  • Collaborative: The “collaborative negotiation” model was developed by Roger Fisher and William Ury in Getting to Yes (Houghton Miffin Co., 1981). Mediators using this approach help the parties negotiate more effectively by teaching them to:  Separate the people from the problem; focus on underlying interests, rather than their negotiating positions; and create options that satisfy all parties’ needs.
  • Transformative: In the Promise of Mediation (Jossey-Bass Inc., 1994), Baruch Bush and Joseph Folger write that during conflict people tend to revert to a weakened and self-absorbed state. The goal of transformative mediation is to help parties shift from this state to one of relative strength and responsiveness.  Bush & Folger call the state of strength “empowerment,” and responsiveness to the opposing party “recognition.” Empowerment and recognition are the two central concepts in transformative mediation.
  • Distributive: In distributive bargaining, the parties compete over the distribution of a fixed sum of value. Mediators in such negotiations assist the parties by teaching them the principles of distributive bargaining and engaging them in a rigorous process of case evaluation and risk analysis.
  • Evaluative: To assist the parties with their risk analyses, mediators frequently are asked to provide opinions on how the dispute would be decided at trial. Lol has broad trial experience in many areas of the law which enables him to provide useful opinions to the parties and counsel.

Most mediations require the use of all four techniques of dispute resolution. Lol Sorensen is an expert in these and other techniques.

Santa Barbara Courthouse entrance