First of all let’s acknowledge the challenges and frustrations inherent in your role. You knew it wasn’t going to be easy – but this?
There are good days and bad days but it’s a tough role. More than anybody else in the firm, you know the number of issues that need addressing and the scale of the challenges your firm faces. There are rewards, sure. But it can be a lonely place and you feel the weight of decision-making on your shoulders.
I hope you’re proud of your achievements. Perhaps you’ve initiated a process to review your strategy or looked at merger partners or recruited some talented partners or Finance/BD professionals. Whatever those achievements are, when the going gets tough (which it will), replay those positive thoughts!
I say this because I’m aware that most of you are probably lawyers who have been especially trained in analysing detail and seeing things in black and white. Management is rather more grey! There’s hardly ever a right or wrong – never a perfect solution. So it helps to see the glass half full – not half empty! Achievements and opportunities, not failures or problems!
Those who get on top of the role seem to have more focus. They pick three or four initiatives and do them really well, rather than having a list of 92 projects, many of which fizzle out. Change is hard and needs more energy than we might think. Partners and staff need to be reminded of where you’re trying to sail the ship. Plus they’re human beings (on a good day!) and need more support in whatever changes you’re seeking to introduce.
If you were in industry, you’d have had loads of training in leadership and you’d have an executive coach – someone you could talk to in confidence to guide you through the challenges and support you.
Sherwood PSF Consulting is a specialist coaching firm in the legal profession. Most of us are lawyers and we’ve won awards for our work. We have five fully trained coaches and have coached 100’s of partners over the last 10 years, most of whom were in management positions.
For a free one-off consultation, please get in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org