Make Smart Decisions by Fighting Confirmation Bias

If you are reading this, you are probably an investigator. It may not be your job title, but if you are a lawyer, auditor, doctor, HR business partner, manager, executive, etc., a big part of your job is investigatory, requiring you to arrive at well-reasoned, fact-based, modern decisions, guidance or recommendations. You regularly make searching, systematic inquiries based on examination of relevant facts, data and information. How do you determine what is relevant when you investigate? It's likely that you unconsciously select or rely too heavily on information you already agree with and pay little or no attention to data [...]

How to Handle Professional Setbacks and Move Forward

How to Handle Professional Setbacks and Move Forward It feels like 1994 all over again as the world revisits the O.J. Simpson criminal trial in the television series "The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story." The often poignant series chronicles the case focusing primarily on the lawyers who tried it. I was a litigation attorney during this period and vividly remember flash points from the news of the murders on June 12, 1994, to the Ford Bronco low-speed car chase, to the verdict on Oct. 3, 1995, when all of the employees at my firm gathered in [...]

When It Comes to Your Career, Avoid Fallacy of ‘Sunk Costs’

In a recent episode of the television show "Better Call Saul," the titular lawyer who has scrambled and struggled to earn a living decides to call it quits with the law right after being offered the best opportunity of his life with a prestigious firm. He thought that was his dream, until it came true. His friend reminded him of how hard he worked to pass the bar exam and then asked a pivotal question: Why abandon practicing law after working so hard to get established? He responds by explaining the fallacy of the sunk cost. "It's what gamblers do," [...]

By | 2016-06-03T16:26:57+00:00 March 24, 2016|Categories: Career Coaching, The Legal Intelligencer|Tags: , , , |

Emotional Preparation Leads to Better Results

In the daily life of a lawyer, events are scheduled that require varying degrees of preparation. Going to court, conducting a negotiation or mediation, interviewing a prospect, meeting with a boss or employee about performance and successfully marketing your services all require attention to detail. Every lawyer has an approach to the technical/action side of the task and focuses on effective, proficient preparation. Perhaps a checklist outlining areas to research, documents to review, or bullet points for discussion will be created in the process. An element that is often ignored and can greatly improve outcomes is emotional preparation. We are, [...]

By | 2016-06-01T17:51:22+00:00 July 10, 2014|Categories: The Legal Intelligencer|Tags: , |

A Coach Goes To Court

The intersection of a dual career - coaching and practicing law -was experienced dramatically when I argued a case before the Commonwealth's highest court; the Pennsylvania Supreme Court. Lawyers train for argument before this court as athletes prepare for the Olympics. Despite receiving notice of the assignment only a month before the appointed day, like most lawyers, I was essentially training for it throughout the course of my twenty year career in law. I had one month to read the relevant cases, of which there were many, read the briefs, of which there were many, and then craft and rehearse [...]