motivation

Being a Lawyer Can Be Lonely—But It Doesn’t Have to Be

When I was a young lawyer, I mentioned a hobby of mine in front of my boss, something I did in my free time. My boss, the managing partner of the firm, narrowed his eyes and said, "free time? You don't have free time. Your time is my time." I heard those words over 20 years ago and they still reverberate in my ears as freshly as if just spoken. It was true. He had the power, as did all the partners, to transform my weekend by dropping something on my desk at 5 o'clock on Friday, due on Monday. [...]

A Novel Way to Create Change in the New Year and Beyond

In the early days of 2019, you may be asking yourself, with respect to the previous year, what just happened? What kind of year was it for me? How do I want this year to be different? What changes might I want to make? In practice, coaches don't look backwards much. We steer clients from ruminating to focusing on what's possible. Instead of asking a client to look back and think about why they responded in a particular way, we will ask how they can think about it differently or what they can do in the future for a better [...]

Mentors, Mentees and What to Wear for a Successful Career

I reconnected with an early mentor recently when an old piece of business brought us back together again. At the time we worked together, I appreciated his guidance—he showed me how to improve my writing, cross-examine an expert witness, pick juries and so much more. In hindsight, my gratitude has deepened. Like an invisible hand, he continued to guide me through situations that occurred long after we ceased working together. With great mentors, you can access their advice in many instances without even asking because their philosophies and logic are so deeply embedded. The night before our first jury trial [...]

Networking: Why Is It So Important and Can You Get Better at It?

Networking has been defined as "a supportive system of sharing information and services among individuals and groups having a common interest." That doesn't sound so bad, does it? Support? Sharing? Interests in common? Why then, do so many professionals shudder at the very mention of the word? And is networking that important? Are there ways to get better at it? To get answers to these burning questions, I turned to attorney Jennifer Lynn Robinson, CEO and founder of "Purposeful Networking," a speaker and networking trainer who presented at a recent event hosted by Women Owned Law at Post & Schell [...]

Cycling Through Life’s Career Highs, Lows and Uncertain Times

You know the feeling—you just got a new job, client or case and you're all charged up. Ignited by the challenge, you are optimistic, goal oriented, focused and excited. During a phase like this, you are unstoppable and always looking for what's next. But, what happens when that feeling abates? When the opportunity is no longer new and the exiting aspects have given way to feelings of disenchantment? It turns out that all through our lives we are always moving through a cycle of renewal, according to Frederic M. Hudson, an author and thought leader in the field of managing [...]

The ‘Philly Special’: A Lesson in Leadership, Teamwork

On the field of life, leadership and team work look a lot like they do on the field of sports. It's all about creating a culture where diverse opinions are actively encouraged, dialogue is ongoing and no idea is ridiculous. On the field of life, leadership and teamwork look a lot like they do on the field of sports. It's all about creating a culture where diverse opinions are actively encouraged, dialogue is ongoing and no idea is ridiculous. This is especially true when intense competition drives the need for innovation, which by its nature involves risk. Trying novel approaches [...]

By |2018-02-22T12:16:29-04:00February 21, 2018|Categories: The Legal Intelligencer|Tags: , , , , , , , |

Grit: The Secret Ingredient of Success in Your Career and Beyond

The first time I heard the word "grit" was in the title of a 1969 movie, “True Grit,” the story of 14-year-old Mattie Ross, who hires Rooster Cogburn, a tough, aging, alcoholic U.S. Marshal to track down her father's murderer and goes with him on the quest. Set in Arkansas circa 1873, they journey to Oklahoma to find their man, and encounter significant obstacles along the way. Mattie Ross has been described as stubborn, headstrong, determined, willful, courageous and independent. While she hires Cogburn because "they tell me you're a man with true grit," her character demonstrates her own grit [...]

By |2018-01-19T15:00:20-04:00November 30, 2017|Categories: The Huffington Post, The Legal Intelligencer|Tags: , , , , , |

Stress Is On the Rise: Take Steps to Manage It

The other day, I began typing the word "coping" into a Google search and before I could even finish, Google began to populate search results which included coping with Hurricane Harvey, coping with the mass shooting in Las Vegas, with sexual harassment, with grief, with panic, with the death of Tom Petty and coping with a loss by your favorite sports team, just to name a few. For people I know and those I coach, the world now feels like an especially scary place. Many things that were once considered bedrocks of our society and political system are changing and [...]

Visualize a Path to Action to Achieve Your Goals

How do you decide what to pay attention to in a world where an onslaught of images and messages is constantly delivered by way of a myriad of devices along with an ongoing scan of ­in-person threats, opportunities and attractions our brains must prioritize every ­second? How do you maneuver around the minutiae of everyday life and keep your focus trained on aspirations and ­achievement? One answer is to train your brain to navigate past the noise and focus on what is important. Our brains are wired to filter information through the "reticular activating system (RAS)," located in the brain stem [...]

Lawyers and Marketing – What You Need to Know and Didn’t Learn in School

Last year, I read a post on LinkedIn titled, "Why Don't Law Schools Teach the #1 Factor for Success?" It was authored by Cole Silver, director of client relations at Blank Rome, and a perusal of his profile revealed a wealth of solid, crucial advice for lawyers on how to thrive regardless of layoffs, mergers and firm closures. Because marketing is a huge stumbling block for lawyers I coach, I asked Silver for an interview. Silver's role at Blank Rome was created to drive revenue, coach and train lawyers on how to acquire and retain clients, bring the client's voice, [...]