As this is the last episode of 2018, take inventory of your business development achievements of the past year.

When certain information does not get shared, your firm becomes a black box firm. It can be a quick and very slippery downward slope from any initial break in communication.

Responsibility needs accountability. In your business, holding yourself accountable is validated by getting more responsibility. When your stakeholders observe and benefit from your efforts, they will trust you and give you more to do.

The remaining 40% of your success quotient is power-driven by your effectiveness. By leveraging your smarts, your effectiveness ensures that you add value, provide exemplary client service, and maximize your profitability. You control how you demonstrate your effectiveness to others.

You start with a goal that you want to reach. You then articulate and communicate your goal’s intent to your listeners. The way you communicate your intentions deeply influences how your listeners will act and react. When you leverage your intent effectively, your listeners will clearly receive your direction, and will act accordingly. But sometimes your communication efforts backfire and you are not perceived the way you want to be seen.

You may prevent yourself from embracing change, because you do not see the business case for implementing change. Or you may be a strong proponent of the adage if it isn’t broken, don’t fix it. Perhaps you are really challenged in making decisions. When you resist change, you hold yourself back from moving forward, experiencing opportunities, and displaying your leadership abilities. It is time to break your default tendencies to resist change and take risk.

It is a given that it can be very frustrating and disappointing not to win, whether your effort is on winning a proposal for new business, court case, leadership position, or any other goal you set to achieve. To win and experience are deeply entwined. You do not lose by not winning.

In a necessary and long overdue need to right the balance of power and decency, a daily spotlight has been shone on the integrity of organizations, both public and private and that of individuals, regardless of celebrity status. As it should. You always want to promote a culture of integrity at your firm, full stop.

A law firm alliance is a collaborative innovation that has varying levels of intimacy, exclusivity, and binding allegiances. If your firm is looking to service a client in a jurisdiction where you do not have an office, and may need counsel on a regular basis but not so frequently or critically that you would merge with a local firm, consider joining an alliance. An alliance is a viable option for building relationships with other counsel and sharing referrals without having to jump into a formal arrangement that could prove too costly, binding or, simply, unnecessary.

Happy new year! And what better time than the new year to commit to investing in your associates. Your associates are fundamental to the success of your law firm. They should always be top of mind and have access to and gain benefits from your firm’s support and guidance. A key mainstay in running a prosperous business is to build trust with your clients through the service your firm provides. This trust is assisted by developing and leveraging your associates.