Home Concepts Strategy Coaching in Legal Institutions The Good, the Bad and the Non-Billable: The Reality of Coaching Lawyers

The Good, the Bad and the Non-Billable: The Reality of Coaching Lawyers

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First of all, I found a passion for this niche.  I realized that lawyers really need the kind of assistance that I can provide, I got in touch with the qualities that make these clients great, and I became present to the larger value for society in serving these clients.  There are many lawyers out there who are very kind, caring and committed to excellence. They want to be good bosses, serve their clients well and make a difference in their communities.  Yet, these kinder, gentler, scrupulously honest lawyers are often the ones who have the most trouble with business development.  They don’t even like the word sales because they think it connotes manipulation and taking advantage of people.  These are the type of high-integrity, well-intentioned people whom we want to see in leadership positions in the law and in society at large.  Once I found that I really liked and cared about these people, it became a lot easier to focus on this niche.

Second, I discovered that I can do the deeper level coaching that I love with these lawyers.  It often just takes a little while to build up to it.  Before I started working with this niche, most of the clients I attracted were already interested in creating insights and breakthroughs. From our first coaching session, they were already on board with personal exploration. Many of the lawyers I work with take some time to warm up to this type of inquiry.  For example, a client may be trying to create a reputation in a specific area of the law and wants help with messaging.  Our first few conversations will likely be fairly technical, writing an elevator pitch, figuring out how to approach potential clients or referral partners, evaluating the content of a website, etc.  Although, to my way of thinking, much of this isn’t really coaching, I have learned that it is a way for me to develop trust and credibility with the client.  Their marketing efforts start yielding better results, and I am their partner in that process.  Within a few sessions, we can often begin to address more fundamental issues like the context with which they view the world and how that is getting in their way.

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