CURIOUS HOW COACHING CAN HELP?
LOOKING FOR THE RIGHT COACH FOR YOU?
YOUR GOALS: Where you are now? And where do you want to go?
REALITY CHECK: I’ll provide you with unbiased and straightforward feedback based about your situation and the challenges you are facing and the options and actions that are there for you to take.
FRESH PERSPECTIVE: Leave the call feeling positive and motivated with increased clarity about your situation and with steps to implement.
OBLIGATION FREE: I offer these free sessions because the only way to learn about coaching and to choose the right coach for you is to experience a coaching session. It also gives me a chance to learn how I can help.
The truth is everyone I meet with for a free session leaves with an enhanced sense of optimism and with greater clarity. It is always time well spent.
HOW COACHING WORKS
More than anything, coaching is about creating space and time amid the busy flow of life for deep thinking followed by action. As a coach I help hold this space for my clients, promote their inner discovery, and encourage goal setting, planning and action. Coaching is about learning in doing. It is about imagining what is possible, charting the course forward and discovering from the journey.
Coaching happens in conversation. Coach and client meet, and through the vehicle of powerful conversations, complex ideas and situations are explored, goals are set, action is planned, and valuable feedback is given. The foundation of the relationship between client and coach is trust. Both parties must feel they may speak freely and in the security of absolute confidentiality.
Coaching supports the development of new skills and improved performance in areas related to business development, professional development, leadership, client relations, strategic planning, client teams and practice group management. My clients appreciate the confidentiality and the respectful and attentive support that coaching provides.
Some examples from my practice include:
Working with lawyers to manage the challenges of pre-partnership years and attaining partnership.
Helping lawyers develop their rainmaking skills to expand their practices and bring in more interesting and fulfilling work.
Coaching lawyers to get back in control when they find themselves struggling with challenges such as time management, organization and procrastination.
Coaching lawyers on career decisions and professional development.
Coaching works best when a client is motivated and working towards something. I will only work with a client if I am confident that coaching will be valuable for them to develop professionally.
WHEN TO USE A COACH?
Are you a mid-career lawyer? A senior associate or junior partner? These are times of growth and opportunity. They are also when many of my clients are starting families. Coaching can help you maintain focus on your priorities and continue to advance these amid the day-to-day pressures.
My clients’ goals fall into four broad areas: practice management, business development; career development; and leadership.
For example, you may wish to work with a coach to:
- progress towards income or equity partnership
- hone your rainmaking skills
- become more efficient and productive at work
- develop your leadership skills – delegation, mentorship, and teamwork
- plan and take action to grow your legal practice
- make a successful transition to more fulfilling work
- have a thinking partner to bounce ideas off – confidentially – and hold you accountable
Coaching is valuable because of the forum it provides to discuss opportunities and challenges — completely supportive, 100% focused on your needs, and entirely confidential.
As one client recently commented: “I appreciate the way Allison can pick up on what’s bothering me and allow me to let it out. In law, we’re so restricted in terms of confidentiality, so it helps to be able to talk to someone.”
Senior Lawyers and Law Firm Founders
Are you a senior lawyer or the founder of a law firm?
As a senior lawyer, you may have successfully established a busy legal practice that has grown beyond your capacity to serve it. In some cases, a change in the make-up of your team has left you short-staffed, or it may be that you have been mostly going it alone.
You might be thinking about dialing back your practicing or transitioning to another related area of work. You are aware that it is time to make a change, and you are seeking coach support in gaining clarity on the change and how to carry it out.
As a senior lawyer you may also be wondering ‘what’s next?” Having grown your practice, built a client base and more, you may be feeling slightly adrift. Coaching can help you to explore this question and get recharged and refocused on new meaningful pursuits.
For law firm founders, launching and growing a law firm can be enormously rewarding and comes with many challenges. You are an entrepreneur and a lawyer. You balance the demands of leading the business and practicing law. In my work with law firm founders, we might discuss recruitment, business development, finances, and leadership all in one coaching session. More than anything, you need a thinking partner to help you strategically and swiftly navigate the challenges, make decisions, and plan practical steps forward. As your coach, I can be a confidential and trustworthy sounding board who will provide honest feedback and hold you accountable.
“Allison helps me work through the challenges of leading my growing firm. She provides guidance on leading the team, growing the practice, managing the clients and more. She also connects me with other advisors and resources as I need them. We meet twice a month and each time I have an agenda ready of the many points for us to discuss. I always come away with my questions answered and a plan to carry out.”
– Founder of a California employment law firm
Confidentiality in the client-coach relationship is paramount. As a Professional Certified Coach (PCC) and member of the International Coaching Federation (ICF) I am a signatory to their ethical requirements including the obligation of confidentiality. You can learn more about the ethical obligations of ICF Certified Coaches on their website.
What is the recommended duration for a coaching engagement?
I tailor the coaching program to the individual needs of the client. Clients meet with me for 60, 75, or 90-minute sessions once or twice a month and, in some instances, weekly.
I am also in touch with clients between sessions by email, a messaging app, and communication through my private client portal.
In most cases, I contract with clients for an initial three-month engagement. This is generally the minimum amount of time needed for a client to achieve their objectives for coaching.
Many of my clients choose to continue with coaching for six months or more.
Some clients have attained the results they were after in just a few sessions. Others have continued coaching for years as they have greatly appreciated the ongoing support and benefits of coaching.
The bottom line? My clients are in the driver’s seat. In my coaching practice, I support my clients when and as often as they choose.
WHO’S IT FOR AND WHAT TO EXPECT
The results of coaching arise from the effort and focus clients give the coaching process by setting goals, observing, planning, taking action, trying out new ideas and approaches and most importantly, learning throughout.