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David Douglas
Feedback digest by David Douglas, 13 Jul 2018 This Feedback Digest is based on more than 21 feedbacks from mediations, initially submitted in September 2009. Bill is consistently rated by independent market research in the top category of UK commercial mediators. That research refers to him as “one of the greats”, and “strongly recommended for major commercial mediations”. Bill is said to be “charming, well informed and easy to deal with”. “He is right at the top of his game, is extremely patient and hard working and pushes both sides very hard” in a manner that does not cause upset. He has a “lighter touch” than other mediators but “remains focussed on the real issues in the dispute and where a compromise may be needed”. Clients regard him as “a superb mediator”: he has “obvious intelligence” and an ability to remain “calm and in control in a crisis”. Clients applaud his ability to “identify and deal with the real points in contention and to defuse them”, and assert that he “brings a practicality to a problem and creates an atmosphere where clients trust him implicitly”. Clients note that he is “skilful, tenacious” and “very analytical”, demonstrating a professional and commercial manner. “He listens and encourages in equal measure” and very quickly grasps the position of both sides to a dispute and helps them to find a way to settlement. Clients report in particular on the following: - His effectiveness – “I do not believe that a settlement would have been achieved without your skilful, persistent and patient intervention” and “I am certain we would not have got there without your very significant contribution”. - His commitment to the process – clients often refer to his “professionalism”, and the fact that he never gives up. “Your tenacity was much appreciated and was a major contributory factor in resolving the matter”. There are frequent references to his being “very well-prepared” and “on top of the issues”, with “meticulous preparation and attention to detail”. - His ability to handle volatile and intense disputes effectively – Clients are “particularly impressed by his ability to handle high emotions”. He is “known for doing remarkable things with extremely tough cases”, is “known to get results”, and noted for his “patience and flexibility” - His diplomacy, judgment and skillfulness – “Very skilful and highly focused shuttle diplomacy”, “skilful handling” - His ability to test parties robustly where necessary, without alienating them, is remarked on. Clients note his “excellent risk analysis and reality-testing” skills. Clients refer to his “robustness”, and “lawyers praise his ability to sustain dialogue, bring people together, and challenge parties without embarrassing them” - His process management skills are also noted – a “firm and assertive” approach, and a “strong ability to keep things moving”, whilst remaining “sensitive” to parties needs and tolerances, and “dealing with everyone fairly”. - His effective combination of a strongly commercial approach - “commercial flair” is a phrase clients use - together with “an assured reading of the law”. - His experience – “very experienced, and it showed”. - Linked with this, clients also note his relaxed manner – He is “calm and confident”, and “a pleasure to work with”. Perhaps above all, clients consistently note the high levels of trust which Bill engenders amongst clients (“firm, calm, courteous and trustworthy”), and through this his ability to create a foundation on which serious negotiations can take place. His is also regarded as a pleasure to work with - “an engaging personality”, “an extremely clever and engaging mediator who builds up a good rapport with the parties”, and “charming, sensible and realistic”. Comments in italics are all direct quotes from clients or independent market research.
This feedback digest was last updated 16 March 2015.
by David Douglas, 20 Sep 2021

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