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Supervisory & Leadership Skills in the Modern Law Practice

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ISBN: 9781556819919
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ISBN: 9781632814197
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Are you looking for a fresh new take on law firm management and associate training? In this book, law firm management issues, often neglected in law school, are brought to the forefront.

Supervisory & Leadership Skills in the Modern Law Practice shows you how to give your staff more effective feedback as well as teaching you the difficult delegation skills we all need to acquire. Paul Zwier recognizes the need for supervisory lawyers to improve staff morale, maintain effective firm organization, and ultimately increase firm profitability and give you the tools to do it.


"Supervisory and Leadership Skills in the Modern Law Practice presents a model for providing feedback and mentoring in the day-to-day workplace that should be useful for law firm partners and senior lawyers in any legal organization who work with junior lawyers. Zwier recognizes that lawyers are busy people; his model for feedback acknowledges the difficulties of finding time for training in the game setting and suggests timely and time-efficient ways of providing guidance. Most importantly, perhaps, Zwier demonstrates the intrinsic value to the law-practice group of taking the time to train junior lawyers, from a societal viewpoint, but also with a view toward profitability. Don't just read this book - do the things Zwier suggests and you will reap the rewards."

       — Michael H. Ginsberg, Esq., Jones Day

"Paul Zwier's book is essential reading material for law firm leaders who seek to develop young lawyers into mature professionals. He helps us rediscover the lost art of mentoring."

       — John G. Douglass, Professor of Law at the University of Richmond School of Law

Authors / Contributors

Table of Contents



Preface: Teaching Supervisory Skills is Essential in the Modern Law Firm

SECTION ONE: Developing Supervisory Skills in the Course of Client Service

Chapter One
Understanding the Developmental Stages of Expertise

Chapter Two
Delegating Assignments Effectively and Efficiently
Why Delegating Is Important and Difficult
Deconstructing Delegation

Chapter Three
Giving Feedback in a Learning Organization
       The Practical Limitations of Mentoring and Performance Evaluations
       What Form Might That Feedback Take?
       Principles of Efficient Performance Feedback
       The Four Elements of a NITA Critique
       Implementing the Principles of the NITA Critique
       Teaching the Method to Junior Supervisors
       Special Issues Relating to Feedback on Written Work
       Other Techniques for Teaching Editing

Chapter Four
Teaching Strategy While Managing Client Work
       Legal Theory
       Factual Theory

Beyond Supervisory Skills: Developing Law-Firm Mentors and Leaders

Chapter Five
Modeling: Teaching by Example

Chapter Six
       Formal Mentoring
       Informal Mentoring
       Reverse Mentoring
       Current Trends in Law-Firm Mentoring

Chapter Seven
Leading from Behind



About the Author