My pick is that in the months ahead mediators everywhere may need to reinvent themselves to ensure they match their offering to the shifting sands of the mediation market in these uncertain times.
Depending on what your market is doing and your unique skill set, it may mean a subtle tweak of emphasis or an extreme makeover.
And you may feel a need to up-skill in a particular area - gain more substantive knowledge - especially if you are in a mature market like California where increasingly gatekeepers are picking mediators only if they have a practice specialty or niche.
But my hunch is that for the rest of us, mostly it will be about working out who the go-to-guys are we need to be infront of.
For instance, in my patch, I'm picking a dramatic increase in disputes around commercial property and leases, land development JV's and of course insolvency and credit recovery.
And, if I'm right, I'll need to reconnect with the bag-men from the late '80's/early '90's, but remember Geoff, you should dig the well long before you need a drink - so you had better be not just starting out on all this.
So, if my market is changing on me, how do I chart a new course? How do I get to my next mediation niche?
SWOT Analysis a technique for understanding strengths and weaknesses and for looking at the opportunities and threats you are facing. You will need to ask these kinds of questions of yourself.
What advantages does your mediation practice have?
What do you do better than anyone else?
What unique or lowest-cost resources do you have access to?
What do people in your market see as your strengths?
What factors mean that you get the next mediation?
What could you improve?
What should you avoid?
What are people in your market likely to see as weaknesses?
What factors lose you jobs?
There's even a worksheet for you from Mind Tools...
More litigation = More mediation?
That's a train, stupid