One of the leading law firms in India was looking at carrying out a series of programs for its Senior Associates and Associates to skill up and promote desirable behaviours and competencies in their day to day interactions, at their workplace.
Founded in the year 2014 by Sujata Chaudhri, the firm is into creating dynamic legal solutions, provide advisory, litigation, enforcement, and prosecution services in all areas of intellectual property law.
Phase 1: Diagnosis and stakeholder understanding
To be able to diagnose the problem well, a series of stakeholder meeting / calls were organized between the client and L & D team of Catalyst. We identified behavioral challenges as the epicenter of the variety of challenges being experienced in everyday interactions. We kept ourselves utmost vigilant while participating in the calls to study the interactions with the principal, chief operating officer, head of HR and other team members.
While gathering the information, aspects like the style of working for each member, hours of working, age and tenure in SCIP, reporting, freedom and decision making, communication within the team and with skip level was kept in mind for both associates and sr. associates. The entire exercise was done to understand where we currently are and what we wish to achieve post the interventions and at which intervals we will analyse the success of the program.
Phase 2: Consolidation of findings:
After capturing the first hand experiences from various stakeholders, the concerns diagnosed were segregated under two different boxes as:
Most of the Sr. associates in spite being extremely proficient, lacked leadership skills and connect with the team. The challenges were both simple and grave in nature as understanding self, delegating task, instilling sense of ownership in the respective team members, communicating effectively and giving structured as well as clear feedback was lacking.
The team of associates is young and dynamic. Some of the team members have joined straight from campus. In spite of having an attitude to work hard, they seem to be confused with the things happening around and don’t muster up the courage to clarify their doubts or share their opinion / ideate/initiate. This not only led to weak commitment as well as communication gap, distraction, delay in keeping the deadlines but also led to fear of escalation and spoiling their brand.
As most of the associates are new in the team, they need basic corporate work culture grooming, discipline and ownership towards the assigned task. They need to understand the importance of behaviours in the career growth graph.
Phase 3: Solutioning and implementation:
The entire journey needed a multipronged approach, hence we finally decided to design a series of group coaching session of 4 hrs for Sr. associates and classroom session for the associates.
For senior associates, a series of learning programs were crafted and we began with a Psychometric test tool Lumina Spark starting with the group of 5 senior associates to create self awareness followed by action plans. For associates, the journey consisted of experiential session and classroom training with customized content followed by action learning projects. This was closely tracked by internal mentors and reviewed within a definite time period.
- The training was conducted by industry experts and coaches using the Psychometric tool Lumina Spark. Participants were encouraged to reflect and bring deep insights about creating a manager tool kit and understanding different styles of communication.
- Next, after 15-20 days we conducted a stakeholder meeting to sense the vibes between both the groups and also to sense if there are any other loose threads. To design and align the next session we needed enough evidences of the practices adopted from the first session, hence a call with content team was organized further.
- In the course of 3 months, we worked on delegation, goal setting, feedback & motivating team, handling difficult conversations in supportive & sensitive manner with the first team. Simultaneously, we focused on business communication , corporate etiquette, workplace civilities, general courtesies in social engagements with the other team.
- In course of the program, live case studies were taken from the clients, routine examples related to internal communication to show gaps were entwined to generate real time feedback and adequate connect with the session. The principal of the firm also went through Lumina Spark based coaching during the course of the program.
It’s been 3 months with the team and we are able to achieve the milestones set and impact of the program is visible in the organization. We have been receiving overwhelming feedback from every participant. We have another 3 months left to go to ensure the program reaches its intended outcome.
This program established the fact that it’s only the journey based program that provides the opportunity to incorporate continuous changes bases on data and insights gathered and leads to sustained impact.