CLP has interviewed these legal coaches in very different positions about what motivated them and how coaching has significantly influenced their professional careers.
Ms Eymers, may we ask you to briefly introduce yourself?
I am a specialist lawyer for labour law and family law, mediator and business coach, as well as partner in a medium-sized law firm in Hamburg. At present, I am mainly working as an in-house lawyer in the legal department of ADEXA-Die Apothekengewerkschaft and as a trainer in many workshops and seminars on the topics of negotiation, communication and personal development, and also as a lecturer in labour law. Colleagues may also know me from my well-visited blog www.inspiredlaw.de for lawyers or from my appearance on Instagram under @christianeeymers. Privately I live with my family in Hamburg, I have always been a bookworm and love movement, but above all I love people.
#1 When did you first become involved in coaching and why? Did you get to know coaching as a client?
When the Hamburg Bar Association offered coaching for its members many years ago, I tried it directly. And within an hour I had gained so much clarity that this kind of work did not let me go. Of course I knew many approaches from mediation. The coaching was a wonderful addition.
#2 What was it that particularly fascinated you? What do you see as the added value of coaching for lawyers in particular?
I am still fascinated by what we can trigger in people with the right questions, by changing perspectives and the focus on solutions. How we awaken their creativity and the courage to come up with their own solutions. As lawyers, we are used to problem-oriented work, we solve problematic issues and weigh up the risks involved in certain approaches. However, there is no generally applicable examination scheme for one's own life, professional positioning and development, for going one's own way. As a trainer I have met people in many coaching workshops who were annoyed by their situation. By the expectations and supposed expectations of their environment, the supposed immutability. And who then suddenly rediscover their self-efficacy and realize what they themselves can change. This glow in the eyes that is created in the process is just great. And that is something that even we lawyers can tolerate much more. Our industry in particular can show much more diversity. And that requires people who are brave enough to shape their legal lives themselves. People who decide what is important to them despite a lot of pressure from outside and who don't leave their values and personality at home in the morning.
#3 How do you use coaching today in your professional and/or private situation? In your experience, how and to what extent is coaching used by lawyers today?
I work as a trainer in seminars and workshops and love this work as a counterpart to legal advice. Of course, coaching has also changed my work as a lawyer. Through my blog www.inspiredlaw.de and my activities in the social media I notice that more and more lawyers are interested in coaching and I think that's great. I'm sure that this makes the industry more lively and provides something that I always wished for more in the first years of my career as a lawyer - more lightness and good humour.
#4 Your very personal tip for success:
From my point of view, the answer to this question begins with my very own definition of success. It is not worth chasing after the goals of others in this respect.
Personally, I have achieved my greatest successes by always daring to try something new and by persistently sticking to things that are important to me. Curiosity and perseverance, then.
And it is of great value to create a supportive environment. To exchange ideas with colleagues in order to support each other in staying on and growing.
Thank you very much.