As a company, one of our biggest focuses is on employee empowerment. In fact, the word “empowerment” is in our company name! Over the years, we’ve written books about employee empowerment, been featured on podcasts about employee empowerment, spoken at national legal conferences about employee empowerment, and helped law firms all over the country empower their employees to step up, take ownership of their roles, learn how to make smart business decisions with confidence, and ultimately lead their firms towards improved productivity and profitability.
But why on earth would an attorney want to empower its employees? What’s in it for them?
For many attorneys—especially solo practitioners or those at the helm of a small law firm—the phrase “employee empowerment” triggers visions of “empowered” employees lined up outside their office doors, prepared to ask for raises or complain about being assigned tasks that weren’t part of their job descriptions.
We get that. We totally get that. The word “empowerment” has so many meanings and connotations these days, and the media tosses that word around so much that, when it lands, it sounds a lot like, “HEAR ME ROAR!”
But, in a business environment, “empowerment” is not so much a “HEAR ME ROAR” thing as it is an entrepreneurial spirit that, when leveraged properly, can lead to HUGE benefits for your firm.
So, what is employee empowerment?
What does an empowered employee look, sound and act like…and why does your law firm absolutely NEED one (or a few) to get ahead?
1. Empowered employees are entrepreneurial. They think and act like business owners, solving problems…not creating them, or complaining to you about them. Empowered employees step up and solve problems before you even know there WAS a problem.
2. Empowered employees save your time and support you, no matter what. They understand the stress that comes along with your position as the lead attorney, and do everything they can to take operational tasks off your plate. Having an empowered employee in your corner enables you to say “no” a little more, and reclaim some of your happiness, sanity and peace of mind.
3. Empowered employees act as if your firm is their firm. They say things like, “our clients,” and care about the success of your firm as much as you do. They don’t mind coming in early or working late. They think about your clients while they’re lying in bed at the end of the day. They care about your profit, productivity, calendar and systems…
4. Empowered employees are accountable. They uphold your standards in every decision they make. They feel trusted—are honored to BE trusted—and appreciate that you trust them enough to manage your time, money and calendar. They take their responsibilities seriously, and will NOT let you down.
5. Empowered employees protect your personal relationships. They want you to make it to your daughter’s dance rehearsal, your mentor’s retirement party, and even just your nightly family dinner. They want you to actually ENJOY your weekends, your vacations, the time you spend outside of the office pursuing your personal passions. Empowered employees want to free up your time and take care of business—not so they can demand a raise, but simply so you can relax and enjoy life a little more.
Employee empowerment is something you should truly value and foster at your firm…for all of the above reasons, and more. However, employee empowerment doesn’t happen overnight. Like most highly desirable things in life, it takes time to equip employees with the knowledge, tools and techniques they need to truly step up and lead (and for you to feel comfortable with them doing so). Our Team Empowerment Academy is a nationally-recognized leadership development and employee empowerment program that guides law firms and their teams through the process of empowering their teams. Our program is proven to generate real results after only 8-weeks. Ready to learn more? Schedule your FREE discovery session with our founder, Molly McGrath, by clicking the button below.