I thought I had posted this story about business development here at this blog few years ago, but cannot seem to find it in the archives. So here it is (I hope for the first time). I have copied and pasted this story of mediator collaboration from a listserv message I wrote in May of 2003. Time flies, doesn't it?
In the early '80s, I observed a good lesson in collaboration versus competition. Back then, several lawyers including myself recently had been trained in mediation; we'd all received training at the same Center in Marin County. Many of the trainees were from Sonoma County, one county north of Marin, in northern California; I was from the Bay Area but was close friends with several of them so knew how this all unfolded.
The Sonoma group had a meeting and decided they had two options: they could compete with each other, or they could all together promote the concept of mediation knowing there were enough clients for everyone. They chose the latter option, collaborated on many activities such as public education talks, and when I left California a