One of the most difficult things in life is ascertaining who you can trust and who you can’t. It’s not only a young person thing, where lack of experience may be an issue. Consider two incidents which one of our directors came across recently where people have put their trust in others only to be badly let down.

In the first of these a group of hard working well qualified volunteers employed a highly paid professional to run their organisation for them. Within two years the professional had literally run the organisation into the ground and ruined what was, for some of them, their life’s work.

In the second case a landlord paid for a management company to oversee a house he was letting out. For a significant percentage of the monthly rent the local agent was charged with dealing with any problems that the tenant might have. However it transpired that the agent was part of a larger management company and, instead of dealing with issues locally sent all problems to a head office which was situated a hundred miles from the property. This ultimately meant that, despite the best efforts of the landlord himself, the tenants went into the winter months without heating or hot water.

In both of these cases  the tenants were left feeling that they had been cheated, not just of their money, but of their trust and faith in fellow human beings. Recovering that feeling of loss and of being cheated is very difficult and it may never go away completely.

In such cases, mediation gives aggrieved parties the opportunity to explain, without hindrance or embarrassment, exactly how they feel and to share the sense of loss and disappointment with those whom they feel should be held to account. Not only can very cost effective mediation help in the healing process but additionally there is the strong sense of both achievement and bringing about a lasting solution.