The mediator has control over the process the parties take to negotiate. In countries where mediation is the norm, generally mediation takes a day. It is important to realize that while there is a structured plan for the day, the process is flexible. This allows the mediator to adapt the mediation to the parties’ needs.

A typical schedule will be:

the mediator and the parties introducing themselves,

the mediator explaining the process and nature of mediation,

opening statements,

private sessions with the parties to explore the issue,

brainstorm solutions and offers,

begin negotiating between parties and

possible set out the terms of the settlement.

The mediator doesn’t suggest potential offers or solutions, but does have the discretion when and how offers are made. This is so every interest and possible solution is placed between the parties to maximize potential benefits for all parties.