Problem Solving for One Update

Here’s a problem solving for one update from Australia.  The below item is excerpted from the Victorian Association for Dispute Resolution (VADR)’s website (


On 20th May, John Cleary, a family dispute resolution practitioner from Relationships Australia Queensland (RAQ) spoke to a fascinated audience about a pilot family coaching project he undertook for RAQ over a three year period. Unless court-ordered (and even then), mediation often, even usually, fails to proceed, usually leaving one party in the situation where they don’t know what to do next. FRDP John Cleary has created an adapted an original and exciting adaptation of Tidwell’s 1992 Problem-Solving for One, the first systematic conflict coaching model to be developed in the world. Although John’s model applies specifically to the family context, the method is flexible and capable of being applied to many areas of ADR such as workplace, education and ombudsman work. Early evaluation indicates high levels of client satisfaction.

John Cleary has been an FDRP and family mediator with Relationships Australia Queensland for 16 years. During his time at RAQ he has trained and accredited many colleagues, acted as the FDR program leader for a few years and now clinically supervises a dozen or more FDRPs in Relationships Australia. He thought about solo client issues for several years before coming up with his own innovative adaptation of Tidwell’s Problem Solving for One.

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2 Responses to Problem Solving for One Update

  1. john cleary says:

    Relationships Australia Queensland today began the first training of six family mediators in a three day PS-1, locally called FDR41. The mediators are all seasoned practitioners with over 6,000 hours of practice experience between them. This training is a first in Australia closely watched by other state Relationships Australia organisations. The five pathways innovation discussed above is the key innovative tool plus the use of three genuine client sessions for study. The organisation and the clients a have been generous and the expectation is that FDR41 will now grow exponentially given that there are 46 mediation RAQ colleagues and fourteen Relationships venues eager to refer. The service will be voluntary and generally fee based.

    John Cleary


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