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Outcome-focused leadership

7 April 2005

David Feeman believes that lawyers need to know what to do rather than how to become leaders.

Focused leadership inspires focused action
By having an outcome focused leadership one can build a plan to get there. He identifies three common outcomes that most firms strive for. These are 1) addressing overall internal law firm management matters; 2) generating more business; and 3) raising the bar on providing superior client service.

How then does one lay the foundation for outcome focused leadership?

  • Have the right people in command - This is critical and self explanatory.
  • Develop a "community" of leaders - By creating a leadership core which encourages interaction, law firm leaders will both enhance their strengths and learn from each other.
  • Provide the right training and support - Leaders need to be provided with the tools they need to succeed. Therefore, a customized mix of training, personalized leadership planning and ongoing individualized consulting for each leader should be implemented.
Three approaches to outcome focused leadership

Internally focused leadership
Such leadership focuses on building a more stable infrastructure and should concern itself with issues such as financial performance and structures, marketing and business development, internal operations, staffing, training, recruiting, performance, and the delivery of legal services.

Revenue focused leadership
Here the emphasis is on external drivers and issues covered include marketing, branding, selling, client relationship management and public relations. The challenge is to achieve the right mix of revenue-generating tools to produce the highest returns through, for example; building relationships with referral sources and enhancing potential client networks.

Client focused leadership
In a nutshell one must know one's clients and have systems and practices which respond to their needs in order to provide superior service to them.

The strategy of focus
The ultimate strategy is to give leaders the tools they need in order to find competitive advantages in an already demanding profession.

Full article on Law Practice Today

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