Creating standout lawyers and law firms
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Creating standout lawyers and law firms

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Philadelphia Bar Association Law Practice Management Committee Presentation 7.15.10

Philadelphia Bar Association Law Practice Management Committee Presentation 7.15.10

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  • Innovation in leading is about breaking out of your old thought patterns and finding new ways of noticing information about your work, making sense of it, and deciding what to do about it. The easiest way to change your old thought patterns is by changing what you normally do and who you normally spend time with. Diversity in everything is the theme.
  • Thought patterns: There are lenses that we use to perceive, make sense of data, and make decisions about what to do. There are lenses that we use to manage conflict. Not everyone’s lenses are the same. Differences re good. Key is knowing how to use multiple lenses and which lens to use under which circumstances. Where do you see yourself? Strengths? Weaknesses?
  • What makes someone a standout? Success against all odds? Seeing threats as opportunities. Knowing one’s strengths and how to leverage them. Willing to grow and develop weaknesses into strengths. Ability to see failures as learning moments. Resilience and tenacity.
  • Spend some time figuring out your values and principles. They are what will drive you toward any goal. Circle top 10 values on Individual Values Slide, Worksheet Section I, and Vision of Future slide for 5 minutes.
  • Handout. Describe in detail your values, principles and what you want your future to look like. As you describe your vision of your future, make sure to connect your values and principles, which are strong motivators or driving forces to get you to your vision.
  • In pairs, figure out what the opportunities and threats in your external environment are; i.e., what matters to you or your firm. Use the questions and ideas on slides 11-15 as prompts to add information to poster/slide 16. Ten minutes.
  • Looking at poster or slide 16, spend 5 minutes in pairs coming up with answers for yourself.
  • Build on the data you uncovered when you were thinking about motivation: values, principles, and vision to answer these questions for yourself.
  • Goals are the fit between my strength and my clients’ or employers’ need. For example, if I want to develop more business from client X by getting more of Client X’s work in the door and I know that I am losing work to another firm, I might decide to do that by strengthening my relationship with client x and asking what it would take for client x to give me more work. If I want to advance my career from associate to partner and I know that I need to get the vote of partner Y, do I know what it will take for Partner Y to vote in my favor and do I have a plan to develop what it will take? Spend the next 5 minutes identifying your goals and list 2-3 on slide 23 or on the action plan on your worksheet. Then we’ll share goals and see whether others in the room might be able to help you achieve those goals.

Creating standout lawyers and law firms Creating standout lawyers and law firms Presentation Transcript

  • LEADING YOUR SOLO AND SMALL FIRM BY CREATING STANDOUT LAWYERS AND LAW FIRMS © Susan Letterman White, J.D., M.S. July 2010 Design and Implement Innovative Business Strategies ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539 Philadelphia Bar Association Law Practice Management Committee July 15, 2010
  • Leading is facing challenges
    • We have default patterns for facing challenges and advancing toward goals
    • Where are your strengths and vulnerabilities as a person who advances goals?
    • Get out of your own way.
    ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539
  • Heroic Leader’s Journey
    • Innocent: See no problems
    • Orphan: DIY
    • Martyr: Others first
    • Wanderer: Looking for something better
    • Warrior: Solve problems by battle to win
    • Magician: Solutions emerge
    ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539
  • STANDOUTS ARE...
    • Motivated to succeed with a clear vision in mind;
    • Aware of their opportunities;
    • Aware of who they are, what they do, and how they do it; and
    • Innovative in setting goals and creating action plans to transform vision into present reality.
    ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539
    • It all starts with values and vision.
    Motivation ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539
  • Are you Motivated?
    • Values, principles, and vision are what motivate people to do anything and give people the emotional energy and tenacity for strategy work.
    • Where are you now? or What is your current situation?
    • What do you want to be? or What do you want to change?
    • What will be different if you take charge?
    ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539
  • Individual Values List
  • Vision of Future
    • Values
    • Principles
    • Vision
    • ______________________________
    • ______________________________
    • ______________________________
    • ______________________________
    • ______________________________
    • ______________________________
    • ______________________________
    • ______________________________
    ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539
    • Where are my opportunities and what are they?
    Environmental Scanning ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539
  • Environmental Scanning and Scenario Planning
    • Evaluating the Current Context
    • What is happening in my or my firm’s external environment that matters to me?
    • It matters to me if it presents an opportunity or threat.
    • A threat may become an opportunity if I understand its significance differently.
    • Broad understanding is an outcome of diversity in noticing and thinking.
    ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539
  • What matters to me?
    • What does my employer or target employer want or need from me?
    • What do my clients or target clients expect, want, or need from me?
    • What do my resource suppliers expect, want, or need from me? What do I want from them?
    • Supply and demand of right-fit talent
    • Where is the work and what special talents are needed to do it?
    ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539
  • Employer or Target Employer
    • Who or what?
    • Immediate Supervisor, Law firm, Law School, Corporation, Governmental Entity, Not-for-profit?
    • What does he/she /it/they expect, want, need?
    ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539
  • Employers expect, want, or need…
    • To satisfy their clients, so…
    • What do their clients or customers expect, want, or need?
    • You are a resource (a source of talent) for the employer to create whatever their clients seek.
    • Are you the right person with the right talents?
    • Who else is in the external environment of your employer/target employer that might be the right person with the right talents?
    ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539
  • Clients
    • Clients want collaborative relationships, reduced fees, predictable fees, value billing based on outcome.
    • Clients view of value:
      • Deepest legal knowledge and skills, matter of highest risk and impact, lighter supply, price-insensitive
      • Significant legal knowledge and skills, industry and client business expertise, matter of high importance, moderate risk, moderate supply, moderately price sensitive
      • Routine, repetitive, or relatively uncomplicated legal matters, high supply of talent to supply the needed service, efficient process expertise, low risk, highly price sensitive
    ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539
  • Where is the work? Type of Work?
    • Globalization: cross-jurisdictional expertise and international footprint
    • Multi-lingual lawyers
    • Where are the developing markets? Latin America, China, India
    • Cultural competencies/cross-culture communications
    • Crossing industries and disciplines: JD/MBA, JD/PhD, JD/MD
    ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539
  • CLIENT NEEDS AND WANTS
    • Collaboration
    • Reduced costs
    • Cost predictability
    • Strategy skills and knowledge
    • Client Need
    • Law firm models
    • Balance of power in firms
    • Who /how to train lawyers
    UNCERTAINTIES TECHNOLOGY FACTORS
    • Added value and freebies
    • Trained lawyers
    • Know my business
    • Client need
    • Used for delivery of services
    • Can change service to product
    • Improves communication internally and externally
    • Coming out of recession
    • Globalization
    • Developing Markets in Brazil, India, China
    • Economic Factors
    • Economic Factors
    • COST OF LEGAL EDUCATION
    • AVAILABILITY OF JOBS
    • JOB SECTORS
    • Political Factor
    • Political Factors
    • Political Factors
    ECONOMIC FACTORS ECONOMIC CLIMATE MY PERSONAL OR FIRM LEGAL LANDSCAPE CONTEXT MAP
    • Schools turning out combination degrees
    TRENDS
    • Where can I get training?
    • Demand for Efficiency
    • Bi and Tri Lingual
    TRENDS
    • GCs Strategy Advisors
    • GCs follow Star lawyers who are part of team
    • Trend
    • Trend
    ©1996-2009 THE GROVE ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539
  • What does map tell me?
    • Where are my best opportunities?
    • What do clients want and how can I help to produce that?
    • Where am I vulnerable?
    • What do I know?
    • What do I think?
    • What should I be paying attention to?
    • What is unclear and possible?
    • What are the opportunities?
    • What are the threats?
    ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539
    • Who are you?
    • What do you do?
    • How do you do it?
    Identity Analysis ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539
  • Identity Analysis Individual
    • Why am I a lawyer?
    • What are my driving values and principles?
    • How do I fit with my employer or employer of my dreams? (or might I fit?)
    • How do I fit with my clients or clients of my dreams? (or might I fit)?
    • How do I distinguish myself from others?
    • What are my strengths and weaknesses?
    ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539
    • Infuse innovation to create goals and action plans that standout.
    Goals and Action Plans ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539
  • What are your goals?
    • Business Development
    • Career Advancement
    • Personal skill development
    • Each requires a different strategy with a focus on different critical issues
    ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539
  • Goals: The Fit
    • What do I/we intend to be and do, for whom, where, and how?
    • The value I/we intend to offer our client is/are….
    • The value I bring to my firm/organization is…
    • This is where I/we want to see myself/group go…(vision)
    • This is how I am/we are different from our competitors and offering what our clients want.
    • This is my career/our business and how I/we want to run it.
    ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539
  • ACTION PLAN ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539 GOAL (What do I want to accomplish?) ACTION (How will I make it happen?) TIME FRAME (When will I take the action?)
  • Iterate: Intelligent Experimentation
    • Evaluate periodically
    • What is getting your closer to goal?
    • What is not working and needs adjustment?
    • Adjust, try again, evaluate
    ©Susan Letterman White 2010 LettermanWhite.com SusanLettermanWhite@gmail.com 610.331.2539