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Posts made in August 2018

Develop the Right Morning Routines

Being productive means making every minute count. One of the best ways you can do that is to start each morning right, laying the foundation for energy, focus, and savvy time management all day long.

That’s why many of the most productive leaders have morning routines in place—structures and rituals that allow them to get things accomplished before other people even get out of bed!

There’s no one “right” routine, but there are some basic guidelines and suggestions you can consider.

Formulating Your Morning Routine

Manage your creative energy. One of the first things you should do is take a self-inventory: When are you most energized? When are you most focused and creative? If you tend to be more creative in the morning (as many of us are), be intentional about blocking off that time on your schedule, using it to get creative work done. Schedule meetings, phone calls, and administrative tasks for later in the day, when that creative energy starts to wane.

Prepare for the next day. Another important step is to take the last 10 minutes of each work day to prepare for the next morning. Draft a to-do list, and lay out any papers or materials you’ll need. Be ready to hit the ground running as soon as you get into work.

Give yourself a break from email. This one is hard to do, but it’s worth it. Emails (and social media messages) can drain your energy, overwhelm you, or simply distract you—so put them off for a few hours until you get some work done. Turn off your notifications. Save email until noon if at all possible.

Take care of your body and mind. Always leave room in the morning for the basics of good health—eating a nutritious breakfast and taking a few minutes for physical activity. Yes, this may mean waking up a little earlier, or getting to work a little later—but it will pay off in the form of energy throughout the day, allowing you to get a lot more accomplished.

Be positive. Another thing to consider is spending a few minutes each morning on something that brings you joy—allowing you to start the day with a positive outlook. This can yield more patience, more focus, and heightened problem-solving abilities. Consider just a few minutes each morning meditating, doing yoga, reading a good book, or listening to music that you like—whatever gets you into your “happy place.”

Good Mornings Yield Good Days

Of course, not every morning is going to go smoothly. Things happen, and fires need to be put out. But it’s worth having a basic routine in place so that you know what a productive morning looks like, and can aim for it whenever possible. Ultimately, building these disciplines can help you get a lot more done, all day long.

Another way to get more accomplished? Work with an executive coach. We’d love to consult with you and help you reach your professional goals more efficiently. Contact Loeb Leadership Development Group to learn more.

Advancing Your Career for Attorneys

It is important to distinguish yourself among colleagues in your firm, especially for attorneys seeking to advance their careers.  Given the competitive nature of the industry, building networks and collaborating is part of the recipe to advance within your organization, but is there more?

As the legal industry continues to transform at a rapid rate, now more than ever, attorneys need to stretch themselves to advance in their career. Here are a few suggestions to help establish your path to success.

Make Plans

First and foremost, it is important to have a master plan. Create a timeline for career benchmarks and set realistic timelines to monitor your progress. Your plan may include:

  • Short-term goals (one to two years)
  • Medium-term goals (three to five years)
  • Long-term goals (10+ years)

Some short-term goals may include establishing relationships with at least three to five senior associates or partners within your firm. Reach outside your firm by participating in industry networking opportunities.  Take initiative to learn new skills and programs; asking questions is a good thing. Small steps of engagement can provide the confidence and familiarity to build the required skills for higher level assignments.

Medium-term goals can include client development and networking, building leadership skills by mentoring a junior associate, or take initiative and discuss with the partners opportunities to engage in higher level work within your practice area.

When designing your long-term goals, the seminal question that needs to be asked is what is the path to partnership, and is that a path I want to travel? It is not uncommon during the course of your career to consider lateral opportunities, in house positions or alternative career paths within your firm.

Planning your career requires ongoing monitoring of your progress and reevaluating your goals. It is not meant to be a blueprint you create and set aside. You can and should revise it as needed, consulting it frequently but tweaking it as your interests change. It is not meant to be prescriptive, rather it should provide you with some basic sense of purpose.

Get a Mentor

Having a mentor who can guide you along your career path is an invaluable relationship. Someone who has been through similar challenges, and who has experienced the highs and lows of practicing law can provide relevant career advice.

It’s important to find someone who can help you develop your legal skills, and help you navigate political and institutional hurdles. It may take some effort in identifying the ideal mentor, but don’t settle for someone who may not be the right fit. A good mentor can provide good insight and perspective on the internal dynamics within a firm and can anticipate potential blind spots.

Seek Opportunities

Ultimately, promotions aren’t going to be given to you; they must be earned. That may require volunteering for additional responsibilities and seeking leadership opportunities within and outside your firm.

Meet People

The way to stand out and brand yourself is by meeting people. Get to know the individuals in your office. Take them up on invitations to socialize during non-working hours. Sign up for professional conferences and networking events, and become involved in local legal organizations—often, that’s the best way to build out your professional network.

Hire a Coach

Coaching is a great way to raise your self-awareness, focus on emotional intelligence, prioritize goals and challenges, and elevate your leadership skills. With the guidance of an executive coach, you can develop your interpersonal strengths to complement your already established intellectual expertise.  At Loeb Leadership Development Group, our coaching services are designed for attorneys and legal industry professionals who are ready to be the best they can be. Let’s talk today about your goals; reach out to Loeb now!