Have you read Adam Grant’s book: Give and Take yet? I wrote about the book in my blog: Want to get ahead? Try this.

At the time I had not read the book. Now I have finished it and I have created groups of lawyers to read the book chapter by chapter and report every two weeks on what their take aways are from each chapter on client development and mentoring.

Let me share some examples of what lawyers have said about chapter 1. These are only a sample of what they wrote:

One lawyer wrote:

  • Share knowledge and tips for success at each opportunity I can (whether in a formal setting or not);
  • Think of client’s needs before my own – give existing and potential clients options – for example, if I know a particular lawyer that has an expertise that our firm does not offer, or specializes in deals of a smaller size on a regular basis, I will consider referring the client to that lawyer for the particular discreet task – this will stretch existing goodwill and likely increase my role as a trusted advisor to the client.

A second lawyer wrote:

  • “Being a giver is not good for a 100-yard dash, but it’s valuable in a marathon.” Be encouraged. Reputations are built over time and it’s better to be a giver!
  • Givers at work strive to “be generous in sharing time energy, knowledge, skills, ideas and connections with other people who can benefit from them.” Keep on investing in clients, pro bono work, associates and networking.

A third lawyer wrote:

  • Chapter 1 does usefully confirm for me that I should continue a client development practice that I’ve sometimes engaged in but always have done so with some doubt – that is, sending clients books;
  • On the mentoring front, I think I do spend meaningful time giving guidance to the young lawyers who do work for me (e.g. detailed feedback on written work, explaining the context for what we’re doing etc.) but I realize I ONLY do that for the young lawyers who happen to do work for me (there’s a bit of quid pro quo element in other words); I’ve resolved to seek out opportunities to do more of the same for young lawyers in my group who haven’t necessarily worked for me and may never do so.

I could go on and share many other thoughts by the lawyers in my Give and Take groups. I highly recommend the book and the value you will find reading it and sharing your thoughts with other lawyers. If you want to join one of my Give and Take groups, send me an email.