Lynn Vuketich Luther Discusses Top Leadership Trait In Thomson Reuters Legal Practice Management Feature
(Please note: this story is excerpted from “Practice Innovations: Leadership Insight From Law Firm Leaders.” Republished with permission.)
“The legal industry has seen a lot of changes to the way law firms operate, and more importantly, how they are managed since 2020. The pandemic forced many firms to change their technology, their processes and procedures, and their expectations related to people, productivity, and performance.
To this end, firm management was critical to their firm surviving and then thriving after the worst of the pandemic crisis had passed. In discussions with firm leaders, [Thomson Reuters reporter Sharon Meit Abrahams] learned good communication was the foundation of effective management over these critical few years. Leaders also had to push their firms to embrace change so the firms could see their way through to today’s post-pandemic environment.
[Ms. Abrahams] asked a handful of firm leaders to identify their most important communication skills and how they used those to influence others. The majority of the firm leaders to whom [she] spoke listed listening as their number one skill — underscoring that effective leaders know when they should talk and when they need to listen.
Lynn Luther, a member attorney at Eastman & Smith, . . . recommends 'taking the time to listen to those who may not be as boisterous in sharing their opinions.'
There are several ways you can enhance your active listening skills, such as:
- Paying attention to the speaker — make eye contact, face the speaker, and avoid distractions.
- Listening for the speaker’s main points — do not get sidetracked by minor details.
- Asking questions to clarify — show that you’re paying attention and that you care about what the speaker has to say.
- Summarizing what was said — check your understanding and make sure that you are on the same page.
- Responding appropriately — offer support, provide feedback, or simply say thank you.
Active listening is a skill that takes practice. The more you do it, the better at it you’ll become, and the more influence you will have as a leader.”
Lynn Vuketich Luther exclusively concentrates her practice in representing management in labor and employment matters. “I provide employers with efficient, common sense solutions to effectively manage their workforces without burdening business operations.” She regularly lectures at seminars designed to educate clients and organization members on various aspects of employment law.