Supervised coaching
client story

Empowering a coach to cultivate a leader

John was an internal coach for Karen. A senior associate in a mid-tier law firm, Karen wanted to become an equity partner. But positions were scarce – and competition was intense. With the next intake only a year away, I worked closely with John to help Karen become an ideal candidate.

Karen’s barriers to making partner

To get her across the line, John knew Karen needed to:

‘Grow the pie’ by attracting referrals and acquiring new clients

Think and act like a business owner – by adopting a more strategic approach

Promote herself to partners in other practice areas of the firm

Delegate work to junior lawyers to reduce costs and enhance the firm’s capabilities

Realising John’s coaching potential

After assessing Karen’s financial results, I coached John to help her set SMART goals and develop a strategy for winning more high-value work. I also taught him ways to instil an ‘owner’ mindset in Karen, which included seizing the opportunity to craft and present the practice group’s business plan.

Importantly, leveraging my expertise, John worked with Karen to create a networking map, identify gaps between herself and the partners – and forge relationships systematically.

But to be a truly effective leader, Karen also needed to focus on nurturing others.

Using the firm’s competency model, I supported John as he showed Karen how to identify opportunities for delegation, assess competencies and manage projects more effectively.

Karen made partner – this is why

Through my supervised coaching, John expanded his own coaching capabilities and positioned Karen as a top candidate. In the end, she made partner. And this was because she:

Moved from the mindset of a practitioner to a business owner

Became more confident in her business development skills, built a stronger internal profile and exceeded the financial expectations for partnership

Forged strong relationships with partners and clients, which helped her ‘grow the pie’

Mastered goal setting, priority planning and communicating her intentions to drive positive outcomes

Nurtured a team of motivated junior lawyers