Learning & events

Online Masterclass series : Assessing suitability and preparing for mediation

with Franca Petrone

2, 5, 9, 12,16 and 19 March 2021 | 11.00am - 12.30pm AEDT | Online

Assessing suitability and preparing for mediation Effective preparation significantly increases success and satisfaction in dispute resolution processes. This Masterclass Series will extend your knowledge and develop and refine your skills in assessing suitability and preparing for mediation. Designed for those who have completed mediation training and wish to develop a practice and those keen to refresh their approaches to preparing for mediation. Each of the following Masterclasses will focus on essential knowledge and skills needed to establish trust and build rapport; assess suitability; manage expectations; assist in preparation; make appropriate referrals and ultimately craft a process that meets the participants’ needs.


Lesson Plan

Tuesday 2 March| 11am–12:30pm AEDT
Session 1 | How preliminary meetings enhance dispute resolution processes

This first session will focus on the purpose of preliminary meetings and what the mediator is doing during those meetings. Participants will consider the legislative and National Mediation Accreditation Schemes (NMAS) requirements around preliminary meetings and develop and understanding of the significant impact that effective preliminary meetings have on dispute resolution processes.

Friday 5 March | 11am–12:30pm AEDT
Session 2 | A framework for assessing suitability and preparing participants for mediation

In this session, you will be given a framework for the preliminary meeting and be engaged in exercises that allows you to practice the skills and generate the types of questions that you will find most helpful during this stage.

Tuesday 9 March | 11am–12:30pm AEDT
Session 3 | Factors to consider in assessing suitability and making referrals

Building on session 2, you will be involved in discussing various case studies in both small and large groups to assess suitability and make appropriate referrals. Options to manage issues of safety and power dynamics based on information gleaned from preliminary meetings will be discussed.

Friday 12 March | 11am–12:30pm AEDT
Session 4 | Preliminary meeting simulations

You will choose a fact scenario relevant to your area of interest and will have the opportunity to conduct a preliminary meeting or play the role of a client in a preliminary meeting, with time for small and large group debrief and questions.

Tuesday 16 March | 11am–12:30pm AEDT
Session 5 | Responding to challenges and getting commitment

Not all people come to dispute resolution processes voluntarily. This session will focus on organising and preparing for preliminary meetings and responding to challenges. You will be involved in a second preliminary meeting simulation so that everyone in the series has the opportunity to experience the role of both mediator and client in a preliminary meeting.

Friday 19 March | 11am–12:30pm AEDT
Session 6 | Preliminary meeting simulation with coached feedback

This session will provide the opportunity to conduct a preliminary meeting in your area of interest with a coach acting as client and providing you with real time feedback and an opportunity for one on one discussion after the simulation.


About the presenter

Franca Petrone

Franca has a background in law and over 25 years’ experience providing dispute management services in a broad range of areas including commercial, personal injury, workplace and family. She provides training and coaching in conflict management and mediation for various universities and other organisations in Australia and the broader Asia Pacific region.

Franca's practice includes mediating and conciliating in a number of South Australian and Federal courts and tribunals. She is on various mediator panels and is a restorative engagement facilitator for the Office of the Commonwealth Ombudsman and Catholic Church under their Towards Healing program.

Franca was inaugural Secretary and a founding Director of the Mediator Standards Board (MSB) (2010-2013) and Project Officer, Review of Standards (2013-2015). She is Chair of the Law Society of South Australia (LSSA) ADR Committee and a member of both the LSSA and AAT Mediator Accreditation Committees.

Franca has been providing training and coaching services to the Resolution Institute (formerly LEADR) since 1995 and has consistently received excellent feedback from training participants about the value she brings to the training offerings


Timing: Please note this session runs from 11am–12:30pm AEDT

Technology required: Zoom application, PC/laptop/tablet/smartphone, Internet connection, sound/speakers or a headset and an in-built microphone.