In Part 1 of this Law Practice Manager exclusive interview special for International Women’s Day, Professional Life Coach Lakeshia Ekeigwe reveals her insightful observations about women in law firms.
In this second part, Lakeshia describes how she works with individual women lawyers and law firms to effect positive change.
How and where do you work with your clients?
I have clients literally around the world. I work with lawyers and law firms virtually via Skype or phone and in person depending on the type of work we are doing together.
How often do you work with an individual and over what period?
The sweet spot for working with me is nine Sessions; three times per month over three months.
How do you work with your clients to effect change?
Interestingly, the work I do with firms and individuals follows a similar formula. I work with both to help clarify their vision, values & voice; business and revenue goals; cultural identity or personal brand and establishing and protecting their reputational capital.
I facilitate the Coaching Attorneys Leadership Development Program (CALDP) which is a high engagement, deeply interactive process framed in the principles of emotional intelligence which takes a person-centered approach to leadership and professional and personal development specifically for lawyers and legal professionals.
The process includes ongoing coaching and consulting support for lawyers at literally every stage of their career, from senior partners to mid-level associates.
How do you work with clients who want to change their career?
I have had several clients who hired me because I specifically was not a life & business coach suggesting a “career change.” I actually believe it is unkind and unfair to do so.
Lawyers spend so much of their lives working extremely hard to become a lawyer. Most embody specific qualities that made them want to become a lawyer in the first place, like a sense of justice and fairness; a love for the law; a desire to help others. I would never suggest they simply walk away from what they worked so hard to attain.
When I work with clients, my first question is what do you love most and least about being a lawyer. I have found the stress and pressure many lawyers work under can cause them to lose sight of what they love about their work. Understanding that, I support them to working at doing more of what they love about the practice of law and less of what they dislike.
Once they get clear on that, they may desire a practice area change or need to change the firm or company they work for which may, in fact, be a source of deep unhappiness for them.
Then I suggest they add in things that are personally important to them to fill their lives with inspiration, happiness and joy, such as creativity, art, music, travel.
What changes have you seen effected as a result of your work?
My process is called Rapid Clarity Coaching. I help clients get really clear, really fast about what they want in their life and business. Some of the results my clients have experienced are:
– Promotion from senior associate to partner
– Establishing their own firms
– Securing high level positions (one client is currently a sitting City Manager in a large US metro area)
– Increased revenue and salaries
– Lower attrition rates
– Attracting dream clients and not working with problem clients who don’t follow advice, pay late or don’t pay at all
– Working in ways that reduce stress and increase joy
– Increased personal happiness
Thank you Lakeshia. Please share this post with your network, and if you are affected by any of the issues in this post, please get in touch directly with Lakeshia. Comments are welcome.