The Perfect Protégé

Our ninety (90) minute Perfect Protégé training is designed to complement the firm’s efforts to accelerate the on boarding and early development of 1st year associates. Our goal is to provide the practical skills that help a 1st year’s speed to productivity.

The Perfect Protégé approach to associate development is directed to helping 1st years understand the answers to each of the following core questions:

How do 1st year associates get in the pathway of sustained senior attorney investment? What do top performing 1st years do (though not asked) to add value?

  • What deposits must 1st years make into their ‘trust account’ with each senior associate and partner in their practice group?
  • What are the derailment patterns of 1st years that get off to slow starts?
  • How do you identify and capitalize on ‘mentoring moments?’
  • Learn how to deliver current value and signal ‘future value’ to partners?
  • Learn how to feed the personal and organizational relationships that serve as additional sources of sustenance and affirmation?

The Indispensable Associate

Today’s associate does not want to be a spectator to top performance. They deeply respect the contributions of top performers but struggle to better understand the pathway to top performance that leads to permanent membership on key client teams.

Our ninety (90) minute Indispensable Associate training is directed to the career development needs of associates. The goal of this training is to give associates the tools needed to produce the competencies that drive their value to the firm and clients – competencies to include analytic skills, relationship building, communication, leadership, problem solving, career ownership, and client development.

With respect to such competencies associates must be able to:

  1. Actually picture the competency as it is exemplified day to day in the law firm setting and
  2. Learn to produce the ways of working, ways of relationship building and ways of self-investment that reflect the proficiency with respect to the competency – understanding what top performing associates do when no one is watching.

The Competency Workout® strengthens existing competency frameworks by identifying the sources of know-how, energy, and confidence that enable top performers to undertake their work in a way that signals value to colleagues and clients and sets forth how associates self-invest and ripen their ‘work experiences’ into the competencies coveted by today’s law firm.

Building Organic Relationships With Colleagues and Clients

This ninety (90) minute training is designed to examine what top performers actually to establish and cultivate strong relationships with colleagues and current clients.

  • Finding ‘likeness’ with colleagues and clients
  • Active relationship investment
  • The role of self-assessment in relationships
  • Building a brand that attracts advocates
  • The role of powerful shared experiences

The Diverse Attorney in the New Normal

This two (2) hour training sets forth the market (internal and external) market factors that will shape the diversity narrative and the career trajectory of today’s diverse attorney.

  • Re-thinking an aging diversity narrative
  • The ‘diversity endgame’ that empowers diverse attorneys to achieve top performance
  • The diverse attorney as ‘lead actor’ in their career outcomes
  • The dynamics of partner/client conversion
  • The mindset of the top performing diverse attorneys
  • The business partnering imperative

Client Development for Senior Associates

Many very gifted senior associates ‘make partner’ yet find that they are lacking the full complement of client development skills needed to become successful partners. Our client development training and planning tools are designed to orient senior associates to the ways of working and ways of relationship building needed for long term client development success.

Our client development training for senior associates provides training and tools that:

  • Allows for a realistic assessment of an attorney’s client development ‘starting point’
  • Helps attorneys identify high value client development opportunities
  • Contains a clear set of well-defined goals, timetables and accountability; and
  • Creates opportunities for co-investment and cross-selling

The Engaged Partner (Re-Charging the Partner-Investor)

It is impossible to have a successful mentoring or associate development program without engaged partners. Our Engaged Partner training is designed to reflect today’s ‘partner reality’ yet empower partners with the tools to increase their levels of engagement and be a meaningful resource to associates. For example, the traditional mentoring model has in many instances underperformed for the reasons set forth below:

  • Partner Demands – The productivity demands on partners are increasing and partners prefer to make their discretionary leadership investments in associates with whom they ‘find likeness’ and perceive to be top performers.
  • Compatibility Risk – Compulsory relationships may yield compliant participation but rarely result in the active and sustained investment of mentoring deliverables that associates need.
  • Expectation Disconnect – A lack of clarity around the “ingredients” of mentoring success often leads to disharmony between what “associates want” relative to what partners can (and should) “reasonably give.”

Our Engaged Partner training examines partner demands, compatibility risk and expectation disconnect, providing partners with practical strategies they can deploy to increase their levels of engagement in and impact on associate development generally and the mentoring relationship specifically.

Client Development Strategies for Partners

Our ninety (90) minute ‘Client Development Strategies’ training is designed to set forth the practical client development and engagement strategies of top performing law firm partners. Our trainers have been general counsel and have designed a training that offers a view of client development from the ‘client’s view.’

This presentation allows attorneys to distinguish between the attributes recognized by in-house counsel as true differentiated value attributes from those that are viewed as attributes that are merely ‘points of parity’ with incumbent elite attorneys. We examine the need for each attorney to develop a compelling ‘Value Story’, one that clearly sets forth how that attorney’s efforts actually contribute to the commercial and operational outcomes of clients.

The Perfect Pitch

We deliver sixty (60) minute training on the ‘perfect’ pitch (an examination of the anatomy of the ‘perfect pitch’); take the audience ‘inside’ a law department strategic plan, and conduct an interactive exercise that allows attorneys to examine the extent to which they truly project differentiated value to firm and prospective clients.

This Perfect Pitch training grows out of our work with law departments and reflects the ‘client perspective’ on the effective pitch.

The Personal Journey Experience

Partners are the custodians and stewards of firm culture. It is in their stories that associates more clearly see their possibilities – believing they are tied to an organization committed to their long term success.

The Personal Journey Experience? is designed to provide an environment for earnest presentation, one directed to the following three (3) core goals:

Focus on Commonality of Experience

Helping associates understand that firm leaders “have been where they (Associates) are”, confronted many of the similar challenges, had (and have) similar needs and aspirations.

Sharing Practical Strategies

Communicate the practical strategies leaders deployed to progress professionally and at the same time lead purposeful personal lives. Exposing associates to “setbacks”, “turning points” as well as triumphs are particularly important in “humanizing” firm leaders.

Power of Relationships

Communicate the importance of establishing and making a continuous investment in the personal and professional relationships that are a source of sustenance throughout one’s career.

The Client Empathy Advantage

Empathy is at the core of an associate’s communication and client service skills – the ability to sense the emotions of those around you and calibrate your communication accordingly. This is a skill wholly independent of raw intellect, yet a powerful source of differentiation for the associate.

In this training associates will learn how to:

  • Gauge the emotional tone of a room; as opposed to being ‘tone deaf’
  • Anticipate unstated needs; the capacity to hear unvoiced questions
  • Account for the performance objectives that impact client behavior
  • Link their self-awareness to client empathy and attunement

The Dynamics of the Investment Called Feedback

We are trained to believe that subject matter expertise, analytic and synthesis skills are at the core of associate value. The role and mechanics of feedback, however, is generally viewed as an important ‘must have’ but otherwise unremarkable as a training topic.

We believe feedback is best viewed as a discretionary investment. Consequently, learning how to attract this investment is a core skill set for all top performing associates.

In this session, we examine:

  • The skills needed to provoke timely, high quality feedback
  • Effective delivery and receipt of negative (and positive) feedback
  • Tools to help balance control, responsibility for quality and autonomy of assignee
  • Leveraging prior experiences
  • Developing a reliable ‘feedback loop’

For additional information on this training please contact us.