Leaders need followers infocus 290208p65 by lindash


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                                     Leaders need followers
                                                    Tips for team performance
                                                         Creating Effective
    “Success in law firm                                 Followers
                                                         These strategies can be implemented
    management can be
                                                         to improve the level of followership in
    attributed partly to how                             your firm.

                                                         1.      Role Definition
    well the leaders lead,
                                                         2.      Training
    but probably more
                                                         3.      Effective use of performance
    importantly is how well                                      reviews

                                                         4.      Organisational structure and
    their followers follow.”                                     culture
    Those people who make the most                       When it comes to maximising the
    effective followers share a number                   performance of a legal firm, much of the
    of characteristics.                                  focus is placed on leadership. This
    1. Self Management - Followers                       often involves enhancing the leadership
                                                         skills of the existing leaders - partners    If people are enthused about their work,
    have the ability to exercise control
                                                         and associates - as well as instilling       they constantly seek better ways of
    over their work and are
                                                         leadership values in all other staff.        doing things and service their clients -
    comfortable operating without
                                                                                                      whether internal or external - with their
    supervision.                                         This emphasis on leadership has
                                                                                                      best efforts. This situation would
    2. Competence and Focus -                            resulted in some losing sight of the
                                                                                                      indicate effective leadership and
    Followers master the skills that will                people they are supposed to be
                                                                                                      followership is in place.
    benefit both their careers and the                   leading. Success in law firm
                                                         management can be attributed partly to       If developing the quality of followers in
    firm for which they work.
                                                         how well the leaders lead, but probably      your firm will be beneficial, the first task
    3. Values and Goals - The values                     more importantly is how well their           is to identify the desired characteristics
    and goals of effective followers are                 followers follow.                            of those in a follower role. The nature of
    aligned with those of the                                                                         legal practice is such that most people
    organisation. Satisfaction is gained                 Whether or not your firm has successful
                                                                                                      will very likely have a leadership role
    from accomplishment.                                 leadership and followership will be
                                                                                                      and follower role during different times
                                                         demonstrated in a number of ways.
                                                                                                      of the day as well as at different points
                                                         It may be that you have a highly             during their career.
                                                         cohesive team whose members
                                                                                                      Even when one has subordinates one
                                                         understand and enjoy the role they play
                                                                                                      still has bosses.
                                                         in achieving the overall goals of the

                                                                                                         in focus FMRC LEGAL NEWSLETTER 1
Characteristics of Effective
Those people who make the most
effective followers share a number of

1. Self Management

Effective followers have the ability to
exercise control over their work and are
comfortable operating without
supervision. They are confident they
have the requisite knowledge and skill
set to perform all tasks asked of them.

More importantly, effective followers
understand their role in the team and
how their actions benefit the
organisation as a whole. They take an
active interest in the overall well being
of the team and do not focus on the
hierarchy that may be in place.

This mature approach is justified by the
knowledge that the achievement of
team/firm goals will benefit them as
individuals. The difficulty for some
practitioners is that they can feel
uncomfortable having self managing
                                             3. Values and Goals
subordinates as the pressure to
perform as a leader is a burden they         The values and goals of effective
would prefer to do without. Managing         followers are aligned with those of the
these leaders (your followers) is            organisation.
another challenge.
                                             Satisfaction is gained from
                                             accomplishment. Effective followers will
2. Competence and Focus
                                             be committed to achieving a particular
Effective followers master the skills that   goal.
will benefit both their careers and the
                                             These goals may be large or small,
firm for which they work. This will
                                             varying from successful outcomes in a
involve attending courses and
                                             litigation matter to completing all the
conferences relevant to their current
                                             word processing in the 'In' tray. It is not
and future roles with a view to make
                                             the size of the goal that is important, but
themselves a more effective member of
                                             the commitment to achieving it that sets
the team.
                                             people apart.
High levels of competence also allow
                                             A high level of commitment can be
for these people to have responsibility
                                             contagious. Where others in the team
delegated to them. They are able to
                                             share goals and values, these high
identify potential problems and present
                                             levels of commitment inevitably build
formulated solutions for the
                                             motivation and morale.
consideration of the team and leaders.

Effective followers are aware of
strategic issues as they relate to the
firm and are a valuable resource in
planning and growth.

Creating Effective                            leadership ability. In such a situation, a            understandings of the operations
Followers                                     well defined role for the leader is                   of a legal practice
                                              essential. For example: if a leader's role
Creating effective followership can be                                                              goal alignment
                                              is defined as being one to motivate
difficult. In many firms, a leadership role                                                         leadership and teamwork - the
                                              others, the leader will likely react toward
such as associate or partner is the                                                                 roles people play in them
                                              followers as if they need motivating.
definition of success. Leadership skills
are taught and encouraged while               A more effective role for the leader           3. Effective Use of Performance
followership is not. This gives the           would be to:                                   Reviews
impression that those in a follower’s                set firm goals and strategies           Performance reviews can be used to
role are just along for the ride and the                                                     emphasise the firm's commitment to
real difference is made by those at the              monitor performance and
                                                                                             team contribution and the role of
top.                                                 timelines of the team
                                                                                             followers. This can be achieved by
Practices wanting to perform at a higher             achieve consensus among the             applying the same evaluation criteria for
level should espouse the notion that                 team                                    leadership qualities to followership
effective followership is essential for              communicate enthusiasm                  qualities.
organisational success. These                                                                For example, encourage performance
                                              Similarly, the role definition of those in a
strategies can be implemented to                                                             in terms of self-management, technical
                                              follower's capacity would involve:
improve the level of followership in your                                                    knowledge, acceptance of responsibility
firm.                                                having a thorough knowledge of
                                                                                             and overall team/firm contribution.
                                                     how their actions contribute to
1. Role Definition                                   the final outcome of a matter           4. Organisational Structure and
The distinguishing feature between                   and the overall objectives of the       Culture
followers and leaders is the role they               firm
                                                                                             The culture within the firm and the
play as opposed to their level of skill,             having the capacity and desire          organisational structure will have a
intelligence or ability. Providing well              to work as part of a team               significant bearing on the effectiveness
publicised role definitions will contribute                                                  of people within your teams.
                                                     creating congruence between
significantly to ensuring an 'us and
                                                     personal and corporate values           Practices that have an inclusive
them' mentality is avoided.
                                                     and goals                               approach to all members report
Often leaders in a firm are solicitors                                                       significantly higher levels of team and
                                              Having defined these roles (note - these
who have assumed a leadership role by                                                        individual performance. Such a culture
                                              are not job descriptions), it is essential
virtue of their legal skills and seniority                                                   encourages people to push the
                                              that they become part of the firm culture
as opposed to their individual                                                               boundaries of their ability. This in turn
                                              rather than just something to which you
                                                                                             creates motivation to increase skills and
                                               pay lip service. The importance of
                                                                                             accept greater responsibility.
                                              these roles can be conveyed to all in
                                              the firm through training and by               Delegation is a significant way of
                                              example.                                       encouraging the right sort of behaviour.

                                                                                             Have the courage to push work down to
                                               2. Training
                                                                                             subordinates. Provide assistance where
                                               There is an assumption that                   necessary and allow them to learn from
                                               leadership has to be taught and that          the experience of others.
                                               following is simply a matter of doing
                                               what you are told. Providing training         Similarly, the involvement of members

                                                to all members of your team will             of the team in strategic planning and
                                                enhance overall performance. For             goal setting for the firm will quickly build

                                                those in a subordinate role, the most        commitment and enthusiasm in those
                                                effective training that will improve         you require to be committed and

                                                their levels of followership are             enthused.
                                                courses which increase their
                                                 understanding of and motivation
                                                 toward the firm's goals and
                                                 objectives. Such courses may

                                                                                                in focus FMRC LEGAL NEWSLETTER 3
                                                                                                             Presenter Sam Coupland
                                                                                                             Sam is involved in all facets of
    Associates – Building Skills for                                                                         practice management consulting,
                                                                                                             working with lawyers to grow and
    Partnership workshop                                                                                     develop their practices.

The one day intensive workshop to equip the next generation                                       Sam presents at all FMRC Legal
of your firm’s leader with the skills now. Reap the reward early                                  programs and is the key presenter
by having associates lead, manage and build a productive                                          at the Law Society of New South
practice. Participants will focus on:                                                             Wales Practice Management
                                                                   workshops. He has extensive experience with the issues
Maximising performance                                             facing firms of all sizes through his consulting activities and
                                                                   practice management workshops.
•      How associates in leading edge firms are
       staying ahead of the game                                   Prior to joining FMRC Legal, Sam was a member of the
•      The importance of profit                                    consulting division of a Big 4 accounting firm. His role was to
•      Better approaches to tactical and strategic                 find solutions to improve efficiency and productivity and
       management                                                  oversee the implementation of change.
•      Understanding the profit drivers in a legal
       practice                                                    FMRC Legal - provides training, research and management
•      Understanding cost of production, profit margins            advice to law firms. For the past 30 years it has been a major
       and price                                                   centre for training Australian and New Zealand solicitors in
                                                                   legal practice management. Today we act for major national
Marketing and practice building                                    law firms, mid-sized, boutique and progressive small firms.
•      Effective engagement management
       Measuring satisfaction levels
       Building and gaining client loyalty
                                                                    Registration TAX INVOICE
•      Managing and selling delegation                              Please register me in the following:
•      Business promotion and profile building
                                                                    o Brisbane:           Thursday, 17 April
Bringing out the best in your people                                o Melbourne: Monday, 21 April

•      Managing and motivating your team                            o Sydney:             Thursday, 24 April
•      Defining excellence performance
                                                                    YOUR INVESTMENT
•      Reward systems that align with the firm’s and
       personal goals                                               $660 each or $1650 for 3 people from your firm. (including GST).
•      Developing a vision and engaging others
Developing strategies and implementing change
•      Assessing and understanding current                          Name
       performance levels
•      Adopting a strategy appropriate to your firm that            Name
       will maximise opportunity
•      Making an impact in their firm                               Postal Address

Lawyers wanting to take the next step to partnership and            Telephone                                              Fax
those making their way to Associate level.
Brisbane      Thursday 17 April                                     o I enclose a cheque (made payable to FMRC Legal Pty Ltd)

Melbourne     Monday 21 April                                       OR please charge my credit card Amount $______________

Sydney        Thursday 24 April                                     o Visa                o Mastercard                     o American Express
9am to 5pm (coffee from 8:30am)
YOUR INVESTMENT                                                     Card No.

$660 each or 3 for $1650 people from your firm.                     Name on card
                                                                    Expiry date
6 MCLE points in NSW, 6 CPD points in Victoria
Subject to specific requirements of relevant State rulings.         Signature on card

VISIT US @ www.fmrclegal.com                                        CVN No.
Workshop Co-ordinator FMRC Legal Pty Ltd                            (Located on the back of your card, printed on the signature strip, provide last three digits)
(ABN 80 083 010 075)
Level 2, 332 Kent Street, Sydney NSW 2000                           TAX INVOICE
telephone 02 9262 3377 facsimile 02 9262 6749                       Once completed this form constitutes a tax invoice from
e-mail all@fmrclegal.com                                            FMRC Legal Pty Ltd ABN 80 083 010 075


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