How to Prepare for Online Mediation

With the onset of Covid restrictions in the spring of 2020, mediation services are offered using online video conferencing. I’m pleased to be able to service all of Ontario with online mediation. The feedback I’ve had from clients is excellent, as there are many advantages to having your mediation sessions online.

There are a few things you can do to be prepared for your virtual mediation session:

  • Make sure you have your unique Zoom link ready. The most common reason that clients are late to the meeting is because they couldn’t find the email with the Zoom link. Find the email and have the link ready to go prior to your session.
  • Be comfortable. Your session will likely be 2 hours in length so get comfortable. Have a comfortable chair with adequate lighting and screen height. Grab a glass of water. Figure out a place where you can have a good view of your screen and sit comfortably for the entire meeting.
  • Test your set-up ahead of time. Your session is booked for a specific block of time so you don’t want to waste any of it trying to move around to get better lighting or figure out why your sound isn’t working. Set yourself up ahead of the meeting time and test it out by logging into zoom and doing a sound and video test.
  • Ideally use a laptop and not a smartphone or tablet. You’ll want a screen big enough to be able to see myself, the other party, as well as any documents we’re looking at – all at the same time. With a smart phone you’ll have to toggle between these screens and you won’t be able to see the other people talking at the same time as viewing the documents. Overall, the experience on a smartphone won’t seem like having a group meeting.
  • Have a private place. It’s a requirement in mediation that you have a place that is quiet and private. There should be no interruptions or outside distractions. You’ll also need to verify that there’s no one else that is hearing or watching the session.

Online mediation has allowed me to mediate for families all across Ontario. I’ve seen it be a great experience for all of my clients. Follow these simple tips to have it work well for you too.

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