Random Wisdom

Getting things done with three wishes

As a lawyer coach I have had the privilege to coach many inspiring lawyers over the years. They are all very generous about sharing their practice and productivity tips with others. This Sunday I wanted to one of my recent favorites with you.

The three wishes practice:

This comes from a lawyer, who I will call Anne, who has a specialized personal injury practice. Anne has a dedicated legal assistant who helps keep her on track. Last year Anne went through a personal transition that threw her off her game. She fell behind in her work, and was feeling like her communication with her assistant wasn’t what it used to be. To get communication flowing again with her assistant and to ensure she was able to keep her practice in good shape she established a practice habit she calls “three wishes”.

How it works:

In the morning Anne asks her legal assistant what are your three wishes for today of the things you want me to get to? Lawyers are notorious for dropping administrative balls because other “more urgent” matters take precedence. With the “three wishes” practice Anne’s assistant has the opportunity to communicate about the important actions she needs Anne to take that day. For example it might be that she needs Anne to review and sign a letter that needs to go out, to return a phone call that came in the previous day, or to confirm the date and time for a client meeting the assistant is trying to set up. Whatever the assistant’s three wishes are, Anne will ensure those are three tasks that get taken care that day.

The three wishes practice was a huge hit in Anne’s office. Now some of her colleagues have taken up this practice too. The three wishes practice brings some fun into the daily routine that both the support staff and the lawyers enjoy.

About the author

Allison Wolf

I am the founder of AWAL and one of the most senior coaches for lawyers in North America. I have helped countless clients over the past fifteen years, develop thriving legal practices and before that served as director of marketing for award-winning law firms. My specialty is uncovering the thinking traps and gaps holding clients back and helping them acquire the mindsets, skills, and habits for growing successful and rewarding legal careers. After a career in legal marketing and business development with law firms in Beijing, New York, and Vancouver, I was trained as a coach in 2004 at Royal Roads University and now coach clients from across North America. You can reach me at allison@shiftworks.ca or learn more about my coaching practice from the coaching section of the Attorney With A Life Website.