Subject matter expertise in mediations and arbitrations is most definitely a plus. Setting forth your arguments to a person who is a novice on the subject matter you are disputing is fraught with danger. It is easy to misinterpret what the true significance of a fact might be. It may negate focus on a way to resolve the dispute by means other than a cash settlement due to a lack of understanding of the business.
While many mediation and arbitration services fill their panels with lawyers and ex-judges, sometimes one or the other may not be the right fit to move the parties towards resolution. Sometimes judges can be invaluable in getting a party to respect the process. At other times, judges, who were able to command parties to settlement discussions in their courtroom, do not have that authority in a mediation. A lawyer or other professional may be more appropriate for the mediation. Our mission is to provide mediators, who may be lawyers, judges, or industry experts, who are familiar with the issues presented in your dispute.
"You can't teach a kid to ride a bike at a seminar" is a book with a definite message. There is no substitute for experience. No amount of instruction can take the place of experiencing balance. At EMA, our mediators have "been there, done that". They continually hone their skills in achieving that delicate balance of "airing out" a dispute, while moving parties toward neutral ground where resolution can occur.