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Building a Successful Peacemaking Practice

July 19, 2016

Having a peacemaking practice is only as good as people know about it. So as much as it is necessary to have the associated practice skills, marketing one’s practice is important too. Trouble is, many good peacemaking practitioners just don’t know how to get the word out about their practice.

In June (2016), I provided a 90 minute workshop at the annual conference of the Association of Family and Conciliation Courts (AFCC). AFCC is “the premier interdisciplinary and international association of professionals dedicated to the resolution of family conflict.  AFCC members are the leading practitioners, researchers, teachers and policymakers in the family court arena.”

The workshop I provided was called, Building a Successful Peacemaking Practice with Attention to Three Details. Those details included; how to determine the services you provide; how to differentiate your service from others; and how to get yourself known to your potential clients.

I just received the evaluation from the workshop I provided. My overall average score, summing up all the scores gave me 91%. You can view the entire evaluation and breakdown of scores and read the comments here.

If you need help building and learning to market your practice, it would be my pleasure to be of service. I am available on a consultation basis or to provide workshops.  It would be my pleasure to see your peacemaking practice an unbridled success!

I am Gary Direnfeld and I am a social worker facilitating the positive growth and development of people and services.

Gary Direnfeld, MSW, RSW

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Gary Direnfeld is a social worker. Courts in Ontario, Canada, consider him an expert in social work, marital and family therapy, child development, parent-child relations and custody and access matters. Gary is the host of the TV reality show, Newlywed, Nearly Dead, parenting columnist for the Hamilton Spectator and author of Marriage Rescue: Overcoming the ten deadly sins in failing relationships. Gary maintains a private practice in Dundas and Georgina Ontario, providing a range of services for people in distress. He speaks at conferences and workshops throughout North America.

If your relationship is faltering, then set it as your priority.

Read: Marriage Rescue: Overcoming ten deadly sins in failing relationships

  1. Hi! Gary, I have been a subscriber to your posts and appreciate the thoughtful, yet intelligent messages that you share for families, and as a peaceful practitioner they are priceless and encouraging. My story is that I am a former litigator that practiced in the family court system in the state of Pennsylvania. Over the years, my observation was that the adversarial system tore families apart, and it became very hard for me to consciously spend most of the precious hours of my day in a war zone. After taking a mediation CLE and subsequently 40 hours of basic mediation and 40 hours of divorce mediation, I decided to make the transition to a peacemaking practice. Transitioning slowly, I have been exclusively mediating since October 2015. I am reaching out to you today after reading your post on building a successful peacemaking practice and would be interested in attending a workshop or seminar, it seems that there is little guidance out there for the solo practitioner trying to spread the message of peace for families. Most of the marketing advice I receive is from other litigators and it doesn’t quite apply to mediation. Do you publish a calendar of events or offer web based seminars? Do you recommend other resources for this career path? I would love to learn more about helping families find my practice and educate them on more peaceful options. I look forward to hearing from you! Dawn

    Dawn L. Clement Attorney – Mediator 484-888-8833

    Date: Tue, 19 Jul 2016 18:14:20 +0000 To:

    • Hi Dawn.

      Thank you for your thoughtful comments.

      Like yourself, I switched to a full time peacemaking practice in January 2015 and never looked back.

      I have always been good at marketing my social work practice and since January 2015 have applied the same strategies to building my peacemaking practice. I have also since participated with Woody Mosten in providing a training to others who are seeking to build their practice. I offer consultation and more recently have begun offering practice building workshops directly myself.

      As per all my workshops (22 from April to June), I go where I am invited.

      It would be my pleasure to offer you consultation services. If there were a group in your area interested in bringing me in for a day or two or three, it would also be my pleasure to provide a workshop. You are only 8 hours down the road!

      FYI – Here is a link to the evaluations from the Building Your Peacemaking Practice workshop that Woody Mosten and I provided in Toronto (you can scroll through the individual feedback forms):

      Click to access woody-gary-workshop-evaluations.pdf



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