For several years the arbitration establishment has sought ways to bring new persons into the profession. If one can characterize these efforts, they have sought to make aspiring arbitrators acceptable to the parties through training, exposure and preparation.
In making these efforts, we must not overlook our responsibility to continue educating the parties about labor arbitration. We must recognize that the preparation of new arbitrators and the education of the parties are closely related. If arbitrators' fees and availability are in proportion to experience, then a less expensive and more available inexperienced arbitrator might be especially attractive to the small company also possessing only limited experience in arbitration. Ironically, it is in just such disputes between novices that considerable demands will be made on the arbitrator's competence. In these cases, he will be called on to be part teacher and part industrial judge. Where an inexperienced arbitrator in such cases handles his duties poorly, the parties might have strong second thoughts next time about selecting an inexperienced arbitrator, thereby eliminating a potential point of entry into the profession. It might be interesting, therefore, to learn what happens when two parties and an arbitrator share a common professional initiation.