Culture Change

The culture of law transcends location.  A law office in Johannesburg is often much like a law office in London or New York or New Delhi.  Old, tired models that didn’t work in the first place have been propagated around the world.

There is considerable research that shows that positive work cultures are more productive, have lower turn-over, and provide more satisfaction to those who enjoy them.  The billable hour has been shown to be harmful to the neuro-health of lawyers and a disincentive for clients to engage the services of a law firm.

What can we do instead?

Bringing together years of experience and training in organizational development, human dynamics, conflict resolution,  and many other skills, (see bio) Kim Wright offers a combination of training and consulting to redesign and shift the culture.

Culture Change begins with consultation and an exploration of values and goals and the models that can express them.  Some examples of workshops that can advance the work are:

-Stress Reduction and Time Management

-Alternatives to the Billable Hour

History of the Billable Hour
How Neuroscience Discourages Us From It
What are the Alternatives?
Practice Areas that Fit Certain Alternative Billing Methods
How to Transition from Billable Hours to Another Model
Business Models that align with Alternative Billing Models

-How can I be me & still be a lawyer?

Research shows that lawyers who can see the connection between their purpose and values and their work are happier.  This workshop helps lawyers to identify their purpose and explore ways to incorporate and integrate their purpose and the way they practice law.  Clarity of purpose can lead to a more focused lawyer.benefits-of-a-highly-engaged-workforce-3-638

Big firms worry that developing their staffs might be disruptive to the legal culture.  However, it can lead to a healthier, more productive legal culture, lower turnover, and higher satisfaction.

Alternate titles:  Purpose and Values, The Path to Being a Better Lawyer, What’s Purpose Got to Do with Being a Lawyer?  Practicing Law with Integrity, Purpose, and Joy

Participants:   Anyone who has ever been to law school

Past Offerings: This can stand alone or be a segment of several other workshops and I’ve presented it dozens of times, including for York Collaborative Lawyers in Ontario and the Roanoke Collaborative Lawyers.

Time:  Segments of this program can be incorporated into longer programs.   To fully present the entire workshop, it takes 6 to 8 hours.Native American elder in Medicine Wheel

Content:  Several studies have shown that purpose and meaning are important to enjoyment in the practice of law. This topic is an inquiry into purpose and values and how to apply them to law practice.  It includes a segment on the role of purpose in successful businesses; a segment which looks at neuroscience and positive psychology, including research into happiness; and several examples of lawyers who have followed their visions and purpose to create fulfilling and successful law practices. Participants work individually and in small groups to craft a purpose statement and to begin to design their own purposeful law career.

The program works on the external level: covering worldwide changes to legal practice and new practice areas, as well as the internal level: beginning a personal growth journey for each who take part in the program.

Lawyers develop a framework for thinking about worldwide shifts in the legal profession

  • to measure where existing mainstream practice is
  • to enhance their ability to develop integrative skills personally and within the profession
  • to access the knowledge, confidence, and courage to become a leader

Lawyers develop their emotional intelligence so that:

  • their insight into themselves is more profound
  • their leadership impact is understood
  • their skill at creating valued relationships is enhanced
  • their judgment is enhanced and they can use values to guide their decision-making

Leaders develop the practical skills of:

  • How to listen deeply to their colleagues and their clients
  • Shifting mindset from the Lawyer as Fighter, to Lawyer as Designer and Lawyer as Problem-Solver
  • Guiding developmental changes in their organization

Lawyers develop their emotional intelligence so that:

  • their insight into themselves is more profound
  • their leadership impact is understood
  • their skill at creating valued relationships is enhanced
  • their judgment is enhanced and they can use values to guide their decision-making