Whether you are an in-house lawyer or working in a law firm, whether your team is consisting only of your assistant, a colleague and a trainee or you are team leader for several handfuls of lawyers, you need to ensure that they perform as a team where the outcome is greater than the sum of the individuals´ contributions. You can start by reading one of the multitudes of books on the subject, but I bet that was not high up on your list of New Year´s resolutions for 2015. Or you can start by taking the seven steps below which I am certain will improve the performance of your legal team. I have tried to distil the most important points for you (based on a couple of those books, plus experience).Build a team through work, not through team-building activities.
What would you do if you wanted to build a great football team? Yep. You would get them to train and play as much football as possible. River rafting and speedboat trips are very nice and if you invite your legal team to one of them, it can show your appreciation for their work. But they are useless for team building (unless you want to have speedboat racing as a side business). Great teams are built by doing work together, communicating about the work, finding productive roles for all members, learning each others´ strengths (and how to compensate for each others´ weaknesses), and dealing with conflicts.Communication does most of the trick, and it is a two-way street
Give clear information and instructions. If in doubt, don´t be shy to ask the recipient of your instructions to repeat them back at you to make sure you have understood each other correctly. To quote George Bernard Shaw: “The single biggest problem with communication is the illusion that it has taken place.” As lawyers, we are in the business of preventing that things go wrong, so asking to repeat your instructions is just good legal procedure ...Zum vollständigen Artikel