Kara Dodson is quoted in a Bloomberg Law article about the rise of coaching in law firms. “We have many requests for coaching with a focus on business development, time management, and executive presence, but another consistent theme is a desire to alleviate the stress inherent to the practice of law.” Dodson agrees that in today’s world “coaching is seen as a powerful development tool for high potential lawyers.” She also adds that “lawyers are great at problem solving—the coach is there to make it stick.”
Large law firms are expanding their coaching capabilities by hiring their own full-time coaches and/or by sponsoring the coach training and accreditation of members of their existing teams (especially within their talent and BD teams). In parallel, the use by law firms of external coaches is also increasing.
More and more law firms are adopting coaching as a critical developmental tool to support their people. Some firms are building coaching cultures to optimize organizational and individual performance. But what does it take to develop a coaching culture? Take our 12 question quiz to assess whether your firm has a coaching culture.
Last year, we at Volta set out to understand how law firms are using coaching. Through our Coaching Insights Survey, we asked law firms in the Am Law 200 and beyond to share what they are doing coaching-wise. Of the Am Law 200 (ranked by revenue), no fewer than 123 law firms use coaching, with a high number of those being in the first 100. In our second article to mark International Coaching Week, we share some of what we discovered:
In The Volta Coaching Insights Report, we reflected on the fact that coaching (in the sense of executive coaching) eludes a universal definition. Many attempts have been made to define the term “coaching” but the reality is that is often applied to various different - but similar and overlapping – disciplines, namely mentoring, counseling and (one-on-one) consulting. Our research leads us to the conclusion that these terms are sometimes misunderstood and/or used interchangeably.
Steptoe announces the launch of their Talent Sponsorship Program, a program designed for diverse associates at the firm to enhance and expand upon the professional development opportunities that all associates receive. The program also aims to ensure that the firm maintains a talented group of diverse attorneys that may potentially advance to senior levels at the firm. Volta Talent Strategies will support the program by providing one-on-one coaching to each participant.
The use of coaching by law firms is undoubtedly increasing. This executive summary of the Volta Coaching Insights Report captures key findings and data points from our survey and subsequent research.
In the first article, we reviewed the research on Mindset and how it impacts the legal industry. So how can law firms reconcile the psychology of a Growth Mindset with the realities of their organization’s business needs? Here are some ideas to start a conversation to help your firm move toward a Growth Mindset.
I spend the majority of my workweek in conversations with law firm partners and associates. Again and again in our coaching sessions or in other conversations, common themes emerge… I have come to the conclusion that that these seemingly disparate themes and sentiments actually have a common thread. It’s “Mindset.” This article is the first of a two-part series. In this article, we explore the research on Mindset and its impact on the legal profession specifically.