Taking stock

The end of the year presents a natural opportunity to take stock. If all is likely to be well, we’re eager to take stock and celebrate the good news. If we’re not so sure, and can avoid or delay taking a careful look, we may do so.

One reason that we may be reluctant to face the fact that our business or our family is not faring as well as we would like is that we suspect that we won’t have options to improve the situation. Why look closely at the rocks ahead if we don’t know how to change course?

Various professionals can help with various challenges: a structural reorganization or buy-sell agreement can help a business. A geriatric case manager or an elder law attorney can help a family.

A mediator is a different type of professional. A mediator works with the parties involved in a challenging situation to help them reach decisions that will serve their needs. Making fundamental decisions about how a family will care for an aging parent or how a business will — or won’t — pass on to the next generation is an often essential first step before other professionals can create a plan to achieve the family’s priorities.

Knowing that there is a way to change course can empower us to look at the rocks ahead and then act while we can.

Posted in Basics of Mediation and Conflict, Monday, December 31st, 2007

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