A great read if you are creating a business or a law firm is the Disney Institute book titled “Creating Magic” by Lee Cockerell. Early on Disney executives learned that if your company’s competitive advantage was based on products and services alone you were at risk. Products and services can easily be duplicated. I believe this is true of a law firm as well. You get quality service by creating a caring, respectful, people-centered culture within your firm. Measuring client satisfaction was a far better business metric than any of the old financial measures that were being used. The division or law firm with the highest client satisfaction also had the best performance. They almost always were set up as a high performance team with a focus on leadership. I expected to see this in a high performance firm but I was really surprised to see the clear benefit in a single team. In a firm that had one division (say the Worker Compensation team) set up as a high performance team and the others not, there was a better ROI (Return On Investment) from that high performance team.
Several years ago Catalyst started applying the principles of “high Performance” teams to law firms. We started with strategic planning and ended with a balanced score card and a positive work culture. Today we see more and more law firms following that lead and implementing high performance in their firms.
One of the unique concepts discussed in the “Creating Magic” book was called RAVE (Respect, Appreciate and Value Everyone). It makes no sense to have a job position that is not important. Everyone in the business is important, has a valid role to play and is qualified. Once a person becomes a member of the team it makes no sense not to respect them (their role, their family and personal needs, and their lifetime goals), appreciate them and to value them.