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BUILDING A TEAM Why Doré Law Group Takes a Systems-Based Approach
Recently, one of my most important clients told me something very gratifying. They said, “I’ve never been more confident in your team than now. It’s clear that you have built a system structured to help your clients through their problems.” That statement went right to the heart of my philosophy on team building, which was already on my mind. The law firm had just lost a key attorney to an extended health issue, and I was concerned about our ability to serve her clients. New associates with less experience had to be plugged into her roles, and our experienced lawyers had to spend more of their valuable time on training. The client’s comment reminded me of a set of business truths I’ve discovered over my 40 years in business:
effort. Our legal services are delivered more efficiently (increasing profits) and consistently (better client service) when we follow those systems. Just as importantly, new employees can learn their jobs more quickly when they have a system to guide them. Around the time my client praised our team, I was reading “Quiet Leadership: Six Steps to Transforming Performance at Work” “I’ve developed a systems-based approach to building my team and managing the business because I think constructing thought-out systems to guide our team members is worth the extra time and effort.” by David Rock, which confirmed much of my thinking. If your team isn’t going in the direction you hoped, Rock’s steps might give you some new ideas. I liked the first two best: Force your employees to think about what they are trying to accomplish, their level of enthusiasm and commitment, and what alternatives there are to get there. Focus on asking your team questions instead of giving them answers. Maybe they will surprise you with a new solution, but certainly you will be training them to think and problem-solve on their own. STEP 1: THINK ABOUT THINKING
STEP 2: SPEAK WITH INTENT
Be succinct. Don’t confuse your team with long explanations, but instead clarify with statements that are “short and sweet.” Be specific and generous. A kinder, gentler approach often prevents your employees from getting defensive and blocking your efforts to help. As a former engineer, I find it hard to avoid jumping into problem-solving mode immediately, and as a lawyer, it’s almost impossible to limit my words. I grew up thinking of leaders as the ones giving orders, but I’ve found that to succeed in building a system that doesn’t need me to constantly grease its wheels, it’s best to help others improve their own thinking first. It’s a strategy I’m still practicing.
1. No one wants to be a slacker.
2. Everyone is capable as long as they’re enthusiastic and have a questioning mind.
3. Leadership is more about asking
good questions than giving the right answers.
I’ve developed a systems-based approach to building my team and managing the business because I think constructing thought-out systems to guide our team members is worth the extra time and
-Carl Doré, Jr.
281.829.1555 • 1
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