DID YOU COME OUT OF LAW SCHOOL DETERMINED TO GET RESULTS AND TO WIN AT ALL COSTS?
WERE YOU WILLING TO GET THOSE RESULTS EVEN IF IT REQUIRED INTIMIDATION, BULLYING AND THREATS?
DID YOU THINK THIS WAS THE WAY LAWYERS WERE SUPPOSED TO ACT?
AT SOME POINT DID YOU JUST GET DISGUSTED WITH YOURSELF?
This is where I find many lawyers ending up today in my coaching office. As attorneys we had to fight to get into law school, compete with others to get good grades and on law review, and finally fight to pass the Bar.
Then we end up fighting to get a job and pay our ridiculous student loans back. We finally end up at our desk one day fighting to find an error that our “adversary” overlooked and that we can ram down his/her throat. This is not a nice way to live and grow in our quest to help people in the legal system.
Many lawyers are actually afraid to learn and use negotiation techniques. They are afraid they will look:
- not effective
- willing to settle for a small amount
- lose their perceived superior position
- not aggressive
- not being a good adversary
These fears are causing attorneys to turn to alcohol, drugs, and all sorts of other techniques to self medicate themselves out of their awareness of what they are doing to themselves. Also they need to convince themselves they are not lonely and isolated in being angry, aggressive and pig-headed.
BUT THERE IS A SOLUTION!
If lawyers begin to perceive adversaries differently, a paradox shift can happen. Lawyer can:
- begin to see the other side as partners in solutions.
- to acknowledge that the adversary is a human being with all the complexity that humans have to deal with.
- that a win-win result may be the best solution for your client.
- that employing negotiations skills when appropriate is stress reducing.
- that a skilled negotiator is made and not born.
- that learning negotiation techniques broader an attorneys ability to serve each situation uniquely.
NOW THAT I’VE CONVINCED YOU TO LEARN A FEW NEW NEGOTIATION TECHNIQUES, STAY TUNED FOR NEXT WEEK’S BLOG!