Search Mediators Near You:

I think I am successful, but am I significant?

The first entry in a series of occasional Dear Diary postings by New Zealand
mediator, Geoff Sharp, designed to highlight those lonely mediator moments
that all of us experience as we go about our daily work . . .

26 July 2005

Dear Diary

I think I am successful but am I significant?

Today all my insecurities came out to play.

After a long session they removed their dark suit coats from the back of their chairs, walked over to where I was wiping the board and said “. . . thanks Geoff – not sure what you did, probably we didn’t need mediation, probably could have got there ourselves but, hey . . . it was fun . . .”


Can’t they see I didn’t just do the money – that was the easy part after I stayed connected with them when they were being difficult and after I subtly created doubt in their obdurate minds without offending them.

Come to think of it…I even planted the seed that grew into the outcome (hey, it was so my idea!!), without them thinking I had made an uninvited mediator’s proposal.

And another thing, why on earth can’t they identify the defining moment of the day when I persuaded them to step away from the cliff after they had all but held hands and jumped off.

Too needy? . . . okay, couldn’t they at least recognise all that paddling under the water I did when it all went wrong this morning- the caring questioning that set the tone early on, the eternal optimism through out that created the right vibe – seems a long time ago for them but it was just a couple of mediator moves back for me.

Yep, sometimes its only my Mum who’s really there for me.

So what I did I say to the guy putting on his coat?

You tell me what you would have said by using the ‘add a brief comment’ link below.


Geoff Sharp

Geoff Sharp is a Commercial Mediator from Wellington, New Zealand. Geoff works in the Asia Pacific region, including New Zealand, Malaysia, Thailand and Pacific Islands. He is a mediator resolving business problems. He is a fellow of the International Academy of Mediators and mediates complex and hotly debated litigation covering… MORE >

Featured Mediators

View all

Read these next


Empathy – Video

This article and corresponding video showcase a panel on empathy and conflict resolution. Panelists included Cinnie Noble, Ken Cloke and Eileen Barker for Edwin Rutsch and the Center for Building...

By Lorraine Segal

ODR and Multiparty Consensus Building – from Cyberweek 2022 (video)

This session, from Cyberweek 2022 ( features Stacie Smith, Jan Martinez, Gina Bartlett, and Colin Rule discussing how technology has changed multiparty facilitation (and the work of the Consensus Building...

By Janet Martinez, Colin Rule

Riding the Conflict Resolution Highway

Envision you are about to travel on a journey from a place of conflict to a place called resolution.  As with any journey, there should be steps taken to ensure...

By Steven Goldman

Find a Mediator