Written by Graham Perry

Graham Perry M.A. Cantab FCIArb Experienced Arbitration Lawyer | China & Chinese Business Affairs | Public Speaker/Lecturer

23 May 2022


B is unsettled. She senses that things are not right. To her way of thinking – based on her training – the Tribunal is composed of equals. The Chair may lead but the Chair does not impose. Equally the Wingers are not submissive always going with the flow. There is a constructive interaction, she has been taught in her training, so there has to be a balance between being too quiet + being too active.
However B senses that in this arbitration the dynamics of the Tribunal have been upset. The Chair, C, seems to be following rather than leading. The initiative has been seized by A, the other winger. He is confident, experienced, knowledgeable which is fine with B as she is on a learning curve. She is pleased to have the opportunity to have access to his accumulated know-how + familiarity with the arbitration process.
But there is a ‘But”. To her inexperienced + uncertain ways, A is imposing rather than suggesting. He is presenting outcomes without going through the process + taking it step-by-step. B is uncomfortable. She has a keen sense of right and wrong + distinguishes between initiative + clear thinking on the one hand +, pressure and
 assertive suggestion on the other hand.. She is becoming uncomfortable. She knows things are not right. But what to do?
She reviews the options – speak to the Chair privately; speak to A privately; speak to the Association privately. She rejects all three and instead makes a call to her friend in London – someone she can trust and upon whom she can unload her concerns.
The Friend is now placed in a difficult position. He wants to help. He recognises B as an arbitrator in the making – fair, reasonable and objective. He listens carefully, interrupting only to understand the narrative. He knows this is a significant conversation – not simply in terms of B and her dilemma in the arbitration but also in relation to privacy and confidentiality.

EPISODE 4. 24 MAY 2022



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