Train-the-trainer programs are typically two days, in addition to the trainees taking the skills training course we teach at your firm. First, they learn the key teaching points for each segment of the program. Then, they do “teachbacks” (a common way of teaching train-the-trainer sessions) where they teach parts of the training to an audience that includes Susan and their peers in the train-the-trainer session and everyone provides feedback on their teaching. This enables the trainees to learn the content and the training techniques (facilitation of the skills exercises). Without this kind of practice through teach-backs, train-the-trainer sessions are not effective.
We teach the trainers the content of the program and are available to assist them in co-teaching their initial session prior to the end of our involvement with the firm as trainers. For example, if we conduct two skills training sessions, the trainees learn the material in the first workshop, then take the train-the-trainer session, and following that we have them help us teach segments of the second skills workshop in your firm. If we are not able to do the training sessions in this manner, we are available for telephone or WebEx coaching for the trainees prior to the first training session they conduct. In addition, the trainees have unlimited access to our two online LPM courses to continue to refresh their memory and skills for teaching within their firm. Our goal here is to ensure that your trainers are armed with sufficient skills to carry this initiative into the future.
This course also includes our trainers creating a training workbook for the trainees covering the program we have customized for you. The training workbook provides training tips, content examples and other information and provides them with our entire presentation deck for their use. We are giving your trainers the right to use our intellectual property invested in this program, so there is limited, if any, need for our trainers after this program. We teach the substantive content, the examples and how to use the exercises to teach the LPM skills.
LPM coaching sessions serve as opportunities to help participants implement LPM techniques in their actual matters. Depending on how comprehensive the change they want to make in how they manage their matters, participants can learn all or some parts of LPM through their coaching sessions. LPM tools and techniques are intermingled with the coaching sessions.
A by-product of the coaching program is that it may be used to develop success stories to encourage greater buy-in and with client and matter teams using LPM practices. In some cases they are used at Firm retreats and other meetings. This approach can also be used to complete an after-action-review of (i.e., “reverse engineer”) a matter.
Our approach to legal process improvement is based on our experience that lawyers do not like theory and want practical approaches they can apply immediately. Lawyers tend not to like business concepts that are over-complicated. We help them see that process improvement is a simple, but essential, approach and that it can be implemented initially without a major cultural overhaul so they don’t reject it as jargon and not applicable to their work. We help them gradually understand and accept process improvement techniques to integrate into their work. Further, we draw on our experience in data analytics and help lawyers see how improvements can be measured and how legal process improvement ties into their profitability or other performance metrics.
All of our programs in legal process improvement (LPI) start with an overview of process mapping. This is the most common process improvement technique used in the legal arena. Two key benefits of a process mapping session are (1) it allows everyone to visualize how they deliver their service – some of the greatest “ah-ha” moments often happen during a mapping exercise – and (2) it provides the opportunity to gather input from all those who are typically involved in a specific type of matter – all voices are heard in a mapping session.