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HOW TO CHOOSE AN OMBUDSMAN

HOW TO CHOOSE AN OMBUDSMAN

Qualities of a Good Ombudsman

Ombudsmen come from many different backgrounds and have varied life experiences. A good Ombudsman has the right mix of acquired skills, training, education, experience and natural abilities to resolve the specific dispute. An experienced Ombudsman will probably have many of the following qualities:

• Overall "people" skills.
• Good verbal and listening skills.
• Thinks "outside the box."
• Helps people work together as a team.
• Impartial and neutral.
• Respect and politeness.
• The ability to gain confidence.
• Knowledge of the mediation and ombudsman process.
• Balanced approach to control of the process.
• Initiative.
• Trustworthy.
• Keeps information confidential.
• Ability to remain calm under pressure.

The most important skills and abilities include impartiality, the abilities to communicate, and ability to define and clarify legal rights issues. It is advisable to interview several Ombudsmen before selecting the best Ombudsman for your conflict situation.