Special THANKS to Velsoft for creating this introduction video.
To view a similar video as well as download a free soft-skills course, go to www.softskillsforlawfirms.com
Define Soft Skills
Who, What, When, Where and Why
How to Start
A sociological term relating to a person's "EQ" (Emotional Intelligence Quotient), the cluster of personality traits, social graces, communication, language, personal habits, friendliness, and optimism that characterize relationships with other people. Soft skills complement hard skills.
• Also know as behavioral competencies, interpersonal skills or people skills.
• • It has been suggested that in a number of professions soft skills may be more important over the long term than occupational skills. The legal profession is one example where the ability to deal with people effectively and politely, more than their mere occupational skills, can determine the professional success of a lawyer.
(Giuseppe Giusti, Soft Skills for Lawyers)
• • • • Increasingly, over the last two decades, it has been recognized that when IT Professionals acquire soft skills, better relationships are built between IT and the other business units within the enterprise, fostering alignment. A key element of IT Professionals building these relationships is their
ability to communicate
suggested that communication is a measurable and improvable type of intelligence, "CQ" (Communication Quotient).
, it has been
• • Back-2-Back Drawing – Round 1 – Experience receiving direction without non-verbal cues.
– Communication – Collaboration Back-2-Back Drawing – Round 2 – Person is allowed to ask yes/no question
How does your drawing look?
Other Potential Drawings:
– What was it like to give directions?
– What was it like to receive directions without being allowed to ask questions?
– Why do you think the pictures in the room are so different?
– Do you think the people receive or perceive the same instructions the same?
– What’s stopping you from asking questions?
– Do you know your teammates well enough to communication effectively?
types are is an effective are valuable offer these effective?
time to offer?
to incorporate some soft skills training at your firm?
• • • • • • Staff Assistants Paralegals Attorneys Clients YOU
• Seminars/Workshops – Practice Groups – Client Teams – General Group Session • Online • Informal Meetings • Retreats
• • • Relevant Consistent Part of Overall Firm Goals and Objectives
• • • • • • •
Firm Personnel Local Companies Customized Courses Online Courses/Videos Books Web ILTA !!!
See Resource document for additional information on the above resources.
– Provide an environment that fosters growth (personally and professionally) – Best Employees want to get better and weaker need opportunities to get better.
– Increased job satisfaction and morale – Reduced turnover – Increased capacity to adopt new technologies and methods •
– Increased efficiencies in processes, resulting in financial gain.
– Enhanced company image – Increase the goal of achieving company goals and objectives
• • • • •
Now we understand
never seems to happen!
• • • • No centralized training department Core competencies have not been clearly defined Absence of leadership and direction has results in lack of focus and continuity Lack of time and resources
“Developing Effective Client Service Teams: A Whole New Approach”
Peer to Peer Magazine, Professional Development Issue, August 2005 by Theresa Lundquist, Perfect Access Speer
• Focus on Collaboration • Utilize the expertise of the various people within the firm • Draft an outline and get the approval of management • Focus on Collaboration
Move toward training and education that is Strategic
Human Resources Assistants Staff Info. Technology Litigation Support Legal Support Services
Change Management Team Building Time Management Critical Thinking
Attorneys Paralegals Practice Group Management Library Resources Word Processing
to put together a Soft Skills program Six month plan Main focus on Collaboration Training that is Strategic
Resources Guide upload with PowerPoint
Tips Videos Weekly Monthly
Group Meeting 5 th month Online Course
Dale Carnegie Dale Carnegie Local EAP (Employee Assisted Program)
Velsoft Online Training
Small Seminars with various groups Accounting, Business Development, Human Resources, IS Department 1 st Month One group per month
Mind Tool Exercises
Members from previous group help with next group.
Who Moved My Cheese
2 nd Month Group Discussion Wiki (Remote Offices)
Choose several people to help with next session.
Online Course 4 th month
Mind Tool Exercises
Toast Masters Based on Interest (New Associates)
Exercise Online Course 3 rd Month Practice Groups Mind Tool Exercises (Request 15 minutes)
Depending on interest ask an attorney to speak on future topics.
look at potential programs • • • • Associate Boot Camp Attorney Mentoring Program – Communication Skills – Listening – Time Management Assistant Mentoring/Team Program Certificate Program for Staff Training
Our focus has been on the attorneys • • Associate Boot Camp – Organization – Time Management – Working with Your Assistant (Courtesy, Respect, Communication, Team Building) Attorney Mentoring Program – Communication Skills – Listening – Time Management – Commercials - Movies – Seven Steps to Getting a “Date”
Our focus has been on the attorneys • Various Attorney Lead Presentations – Generation: Can’t We All Just Get Along – One Minute Manager Meets the Monkey – Lessons from an Irate In-House Counsel – Fixed Fees: Historical look at Law Firms – Commercials - Movies – Seven Steps to Getting a “Date” – Social Media Sessions
• • • • Get Started!
Keep an Eye on the Future… Don’t make it Hard! Build Team Work!!